STARTING FIVE: Sits Down With Freshman Phil Greene

Rookie Phil Greene begins his Red Storm career with a 'Starting Five' interview on

Aug. 11, 2011

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    QUEENS, N.Y. - Throughout the preseason, brings you a new weekly feature called "Starting Five," a five-minute interview with each of the nine new members of the St. John's men's basketball team as they begin their Red Storm careers.

    Head coach Steve Lavin's 2011-12 St. John's squad will feature the consensus No. 3 recruiting class in the nation, but will be the youngest in 104 years on the STJ hardwood and will rank among the youngest in NCAA Division I history. For Lavin, the 2011-12 group marks the fourth time in his career he has assembled a top three class - in 1998 and 2001 Lavin recruited the No. 1 class in the nation while at UCLA, and his 1997 class ranked second nationally.

    With one returning scholarship letterwinner in junior Malik Stith, the Red Storm will feature at least nine newcomers, a group comprised of seven freshmen, one sophomore and one junior. STJ will look to its highly-rated 2011-12 recruiting class - featuring six recruits ranked in the Top 100 in the nation - to assist in replacing 96.3 percent of its scoring and 97.8 percent of its rebounding in the coming season.

    A smooth, deft lead guard, the 6-2, 170-pound Chicago native Phil Greene scored 24.5 points per game with 6.3 rebounds, 6.0 assists and 3.0 steals to lead IMG Academy to a 35-16 record as a senior in 2010-11 and take squad MVP honors. Noted for his quickness and playmaking skills on offense and in transition, the floor general/shooting guard has the ability to get into the lane and pull up, or dish and create for others. A hard-nosed defender, Greene adds length and speed to "Chicago toughness" which gives him the ability to guard perimeter players. He participated in the NeXt All-American Classic on April 3 in Chicago, scoring nine points and partnering with future St. John's teammate Norvel Pelle to lead the Got NeXt squad to a 109-100 victory. Greene scored 11 points in the April 30 Chicago United Hoops Classic benefiting the Norm Van Lier Scholarship Fund, a contest which pits Windy City high school stars from the West Side against standouts from the South Side, like Greene.



    "Phil will be a valuable addition to our backcourt," said Lavin at the time of his signing. "He has a strong work ethic, and has displayed an aptitude for both scoring and sound decision making. His length, speed and quickness makes him a nice fit for our uptempo style of play."

    Fans can visit the new to make a deposit or request 2011-12 season ticket information, which will be available this month. Student Season Tickets are now available for $99, and order forms can be found on or at the Carnesecca Arena Ticket Office. Fans can join the Red White Club by visiting and clicking on the link to "Giving" to visit the all-new Red White website.

    Nickname: P.G.
    Favorite movie/TV show: "He Got Game" and "True Blood."
    Favorite actor/actress: Will Smith and Lauren London.
    What's on the IPod/IPhone: Drake and Lil' Wayne.
    Favorite food: Pizza.
    Favorite place to hang out on campus/NYC area: Times Square.
    Favorite subject: Math.
    Since coming to St. John's I've learned: My way around NYC.
    Greatest athletic accomplishment: Hitting 11 3-pointers in one game.
    Hero/Role model: Michael Jordan.
    Favorite athlete/sports team: Derrick Rose and the Miami Heat.
    Favorite St. John's athlete: Malik Stith.
    I came to St. John's because: The basketball program.
    The best thing about St. John's is: The students.
    Few people know that: I am a very funny person.
    One word to describe me on the court: "Heart."
    One word to describe me off the court: "Silly."
    St. John's basketball player that will surprise you this year: D'Angelo Harrison.
    After St. John's or my basketball career, I'd like to: Help coach.
    If I could have dinner with any three people (in history or today): Lauren London, Meagan Good, and Cassie.
    What do you want to accomplish this season: I want to win.
    What are your funny superstitions/pregame rituals: I have to do my own stretches.
    If I were president for the day I would: I will not have any taxes.
    If I was Coach Lavin for a day I would: Give the team a day off.
    The teammate that inspires me is: Malik Stith.
    If I could switch places for a day with any person (real or fiction) I'd be (and why): LeBron James because I would want to know how it felt to be 6-8, and be that strong.
    If I wasn't playing basketball, I'd be: Playing football.

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