- Kieran Darcy, ESPNNewYork.com
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NEW YORK -- St. John's coach Steve Lavin is on a major, major roll -- and he hasn't even coached a game at the school yet.
One day after receiving national letters of intent from four players in the Class of 2011 -- three of whom are ranked among the top 100 high school seniors in the country -- a fourth top-100 player signed to play for St. John's, and a fifth verbally committed to join the Red Storm.
Dom Pointer -- a 6-foot-6, 205-pound swingman from Detroit, and the No. 55 player in the ESPNU 100 -- officially signed with St. John's on Thursday afternoon.
And a few hours later, Norvel Pelle -- a 6-9, 200-pound power forward from Long Beach, Calif., and the No. 71 player in the ESPNU 100 -- verbally committed to come to New York City and play for Lavin.
On Friday morning, Pelle's committment became official, when St. John's received his national letter of intent.
The commitment of Pelle is particularly important, because he's a big man -- something St. John's desperately needed after signing several guards and wing players.
"It feels like a home away from home," Pelle said on ESPNU when announcing his decision. "Coach Lavin is a very smart guy. He's a very smart coach. I just loved the way he approached the situation."
Pelle and Pointer join a class that already includes 6-7 small forward Jakarr Sampson (No. 32 in ESPNU 100), 6-8 small forward Maurice Harkless (No. 41 in ESPNU 100), 6-3 shooting guard D'Angelo Harrison (No. 58 in ESPNU 100) and 6-4 combo guard Nurideen Lindsey (Redlands Community College) in this, Lavin's first full recruiting class at St. John's.
Lavin still has four scholarships he can offer for next season. But as of right now, ESPN has his Class of 2011 ranked as the No. 3 recruiting class in the country, behind only Kentucky and Duke.
"This class, which will become one of the largest signed in collegiate basketball, comprises the foundation of the St. John's program moving forward," Lavin said in a statement released by the school on Wednesday. "The arrival of the 2010-11 class, along with an elite returning talent in Dwayne Polee II, is the core group that will carry the Johnnies into the future."
Kieran Darcy is a staff writer for ESPNNewYork.com. Follow him on Twitter.
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