The St. John’s basketball team landed a massive commitment on Monday morning.
There is no better way to start the week like Mike Anderson and the St. John’s basketball program did on Monday morning.
The Johnnies got their guy.
Four-star forward Brandon Gardner made his highly anticipated decision to commit to the Red Storm after a long recruitment.
Gardner becomes the highest ranked recruit to commit to St. John’s under Anderson as the Word of God Christian Academy (N.C.) standout is slotted as the No. 71 player in the Class of 2023, No. 14 power forward, and No. 1 player in the state of North Carolina, according to the 247Sports Composite Rankings.
The previously highest ranked recruit to join the Red Storm in the Mike Anderson era was current freshman guard AJ Storr, ranked as the No. 92 player in the country.
Brandon Gardner is the first player to pledge his allegiance to the Johnnies in the Class of 2023 but Anderson and his coaching staff have eyes for a massive haul in the rising senior class.
Auburn, LSU, and Georgetown were the other finalists for the 6-foot-7 forward as he trimmed his list down to four schools prior to his announcement.
Gardner also held offers from programs such as Alabama, DePaul, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, North Carolina State, Oklahoma State, South Carolina and Wake Forest.
St. John’s basketball getting ideal prospect for its system
Brandon Gardner is a player that can dominate on the floor with his athletic ability and defensive prowess, a tailor made forward in the up-tempo system Mike Anderson runs.
Gardner, with a 7-foot-1 wingspan, has a tenacious motor and runs the floor extremely well with a jumping ability that allows him to rise above defenses for easy looks at the basket. The second jump that the newest Johnnie presents often catches the opposition off-guard, a vital aspect to becoming an elite forward at the next level.
ALSO READ: Aaron Wheeler finds home for Summer League
Other aspects of Brandon Gardner’s offensive game, specifically his shooting outside the paint, are still developing and improving but the potential is clear for him to become a force in the early stages of his career at St. John’s.
The Johnnies are just one of four Big East programs (UConn, Providence, DePaul) to have a commitment from a player in the Class of 2023.