St. John’s: Rasheem Dunn eligibility appeal approved by NCAA

Rasheem Dunn, St. Francis (Brooklyn) Terriers. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Rasheem Dunn, St. Francis (Brooklyn) Terriers. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /

St. John’s basketball got a huge upgrade on Friday. Transfer guard Rasheem Dunn’s eligibility appeal was granted by the NCAA. Dunn can play for the Red Storm immediately.

A few days removed from the NCAA’s decision to deny North Carolina State transfer Ian Steere immediate eligibility for St. John’s, Mike Anderson’s squad got some great news in regards to Brooklyn native Rasheem Dunn.

After Dunn, the 6-foot-2 transfer from Cleveland State had his initial eligibility waiver denied, the point guard’s appeal was approved based on new information in his case. Before making it back to the Five Boroughs, Dunn transferred from St. Francis (Brooklyn) to Cleveland State to play for Dennis Felton. Felton then was fired by the hierarchy at CSU.

Dunn told the New York Post’s Zach Braziller about his newfound eligibility:

"“I appreciate all the support I have received from St. John’s,” Dunn said in a statement. “I couldn’t ask for a better opportunity. It was worth the wait.”"

With Steere set to most likely crack Anderson’s rotation on December 18, Dunn gets the chance to join the starting five immediately and become a top-three scoring option behind junior LJ Figueroa and senior Mustapha Heron. The duo is averaging 20 points per game.

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While Greg Williams Jr. and Nick Rutherford have been a stable tandem in the Johnnies backcourt, they don’t offer the offensive upside like their Brooklyn counterpart. Rutherford is averaging 7.7 points (PPG) and 4.7 assists (APG) per game while Williams Jr. boasts a 3.3 PPG and 2.3 APG stat line.

The guards have accounted for seven of St. John’s 30 steals through three games. However, they’ve also surrendered 13 of the Red Storm 38 turnovers, roughly 34 percent. Dunn’s offense will be a welcomed addition to the backcourt. Over his two seasons playing in the Northeast Conference for the St. Francis Terriers, Dunn averaged 14.3 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 60 games.

The Carnasecca faithful should be excited to watch the explosive point guard who brings smart ball-handling, and a quality outside shot. His three-ball shooting could still use some improvement considering Dunn’s career three-point field goal percentage is 25.5 percent.

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Sitting at 3-0 on the very young season, the Johnnies will face-off against Vermont (last year’s American East Conference winner) on Saturday, which will provide Anderson and his coaching staff with the first real challenge. Dunn, if he’s ready to play, will be the Red Storm’s X-Factor moving forward.