Yankuba Sima

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St. John’s to lose center to transfer

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Yankuba Sima will transfer out of the St. John’s program, the school announced on Friday.

“I want to thank the coaching staff and the administration for all of their support since I arrived at St. John’s,” said Sima. “I enjoyed my experience at St. John’s, but right now I feel it is best for me to explore options that will be a better fit for me as I work toward my goals.”

“We wish Yankuba the best of luck,” said head coach Chris Mullin. “I know this wasn’t an easy decision for him, but we respect and understand it. He’s a good basketball player and a good person with a bright future ahead.”

Sima started 26 of the 34 games he played with the Johnnies, including eight starts this season. He was averaging 6.0 points and 3.5 boards this year.

St. John’s hires new associate head coach from Kentucky staff and lands 2015 center commitment


St. John’s continued to add pieces to its future on Monday as the school announced the addition of associate head coach Barry Rohrssen from the Kentucky staff. The Big East school also landed a commitment from Class of 2015 center Yankuba Sima.

Since the hiring of new head coach Chris Mullin, the Red Storm have made two strong local assistant coaching hires in Rohrssen, the former head coach at Manhattan and a Brooklyn native, and former Iowa State assistant Matt Abdelmassiah, a St. John’s graduate.

“Barry is a great addition to our staff,” Mullin said in the official release. “His experience in all facets of college basketball is going to be important for our program. He was a head coach and has participated in every role in the development of programs, so his guidance will be vital to our success.”

The Red Storm also landed a commitment from 6-foot-10 Class of 2015 center Yankuba Sima on Monday, as he announced his decision on Twitter. The three-star Sima also had scholarship offers from Baylor and Maryland and was one of the better available big men in the 2015 class.

St. John’s has also recently added Tennessee transfer Tariq Owens while they also continue to pursue five-star McDonald’s All-American big man Cheick Diallo.

Mullin hiring Rohrssen and Abdelmassiah puts them in tremendous position for Diallo. Both assistants were lead recruiters for Diallo at Kentucky and Iowa State, respectively, and both can now focus their efforts to bring the active defensive presence to the Big East.

CBT’s Recruiting Roundup: Senior point guard, center emerging, Kobie Eubanks a hot name after opening up recruitment

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Each Friday, College Basketball Talk’s Scott Phillips goes over some important news and notes in the world of college basketball recruiting. This week, senior point guard Traci Carter’s emergence from injury, senior center Yankuba Sima is emerging at center after moving from Spain and Kobie Eubanks is a hot name after parting ways with Baylor in November.

Traci Carter comes on strong

With a limited amount of guards left in the 2015 class, New Jersey native and senior point guard Traci Carter has generated a lot of recent interest from high-major programs. The 6-foot guard from Burlington Life Center Academy missed the spring and summer grassroots circuit in front of scouts and college coaches because of a torn meniscus and he’s finally getting a lot of looks this fall now that he’s healthy.

Cal, Florida State, Louisville, Manhattan, Memphis, Providence and St. John’s have all been involved, according to a report from Rivals.com‘s Eric Bossi. Since a lot of programs still need guards for next season, it’s easy to see why Carter would get a lot of hype.

Upon seeing him this fall, Rivals bumped Carter up to four-star status and he’s almost assuredly in the next set of 2015 national rankings. This will be an interesting recruitment to track, since it’s starting very late.

Yankuba Sima emerges as new senior center to watch

A native of Spain, Yankuba Sima is turning heads in the prep school ranks this fall as a 6-foot-11 center playing at Arlington Country Day in Jacksonville. Sima has already put up some prolific defensive and rebound numbers with the Spanish national team in the U18 European Championships.

(Canarias Basketball Academy)

The senior led the event in rebounding at 12.1 per game and was second in blocks at 2.1 per game.

That kind of production and the ability to change the game inside has led to interest from Arizona, Auburn, Baylor, Louisville and Maryland, according to Evan Daniels of Scout.com.

If Sima is intent on playing college basketball, he could immediately help a program because of his size and ability to rebound. His offense might take some time to develop, and that could prevent him from playing major minutes initially, but if he can defend, he’ll get playing time and would be a nice, late pickup for some of these teams that need another big body.

Kobie Eubanks a hot name in recruiting since parting ways with Baylor

Since opening up his recruitment in late November, 2015 shooting guard Kobie Eubanks has been a hot name, with many schools calling and asking about the high-scoring 6-foot-5 wing.

According to Evan Daniels from Scout.com, Boston College, Connecticut, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Iowa State, Louisville, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Oregon and Providence have all expressed interest in the Elev-8 guard.

With a complete scoring package and an extra year to refine moves and add strength, Eubanks is the perfect spring recruit for a high-major program looking for a guard that can give some punch. At the very least, Eubanks should probably be able to come in and score off the bench immediately.