God's Gift Achiuwa chooses St. John's

Updated: April 29, 2011, 3:42 PM ET
By Kieran Darcy | ESPNNewYork.com

[+] EnlargeGod's Gift Achiuwa
Courtesy ECCGod's Gift Achiuwa, the latest St. John's hoops player.
St. John's coach Steve Lavin has to hope his newest recruit is as impressive on the basketball court as his name.

God's Gift Achiuwa -- a 6-foot-9 power forward and first-team juco All-American from Erie (N.Y.) Community College -- is the ninth player to commit to the Red Storm for next season. St. John's has the No. 3-ranked recruiting class, according to ESPN Insider's top 25.

The Nigerian native, whose father is a minister, chose St. John's over Washington and Cincinnati.

"I am excited to come to St. John's and New York City. I really like the coaching staff and the way St. John's plays. They are a running team and that's what I like, fast paced basketball," Achiuwa said. "I also like the winning tradition of the new coaching staff. They came into the St. John's program and turned things around in less than a year. I think that's a good indication that the program is on its way back."

Achiuwa averaged 22.3 points, 13.1 rebounds and 2.2 blocks for Erie last season and adds some much-needed size to the wing-heavy recruiting class. He will have two years of eligibility with the Red Storm.

"Gift is a talented frontline player who possesses tremendous size, strength, speed and skill," Lavin said. "He is an ideal fit for our baseline-to-baseline attacking style of play."

God's Gift (20) is the third of six children born to Eunice and Donatus Achiuwa of Port Harcourt, Nigeria. He has one older brother, Promise, and two younger brothers, God's Will and Precious. He also has one older sister, Grace, and one younger sister, Peace.

Kieran Darcy covers college sports for ESPNNewYork.com.

Kieran Darcy is an ESPNNewYork.com staff writer. He joined ESPN in August 2000 after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, where he played four years of JV basketball.
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