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Red Storm’s Lavin: ‘At Least’ 9 Big East Teams Tourney-Bound

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St. John's coach Steve Lavin hangs out with Boomer & Carton. (WFAN/Al Dukes)

St. John’s coach Steve Lavin hangs out with Boomer & Carton. (WFAN/Al Dukes)

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NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – What a rush it’s been for Steve Lavin’s Red Storm, who won their sixth straight game and beat their first Top 25 team away from the Garden on Saturday.

Lavin joined WFAN’s Boomer & Carton Monday morning to break down St. John’s resurgence in the mighty Big East.

Led by Dwight Hardy and his Big East player of the year credentials, the Red Storm have knocked off six ranked opponents this season and all but secured themselves a berth in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2002.

“As the players are growing more comfortable, what we’re doing offensively, defensively … then the breakthroughs happen,” said Lavin. “But really, we had seen the incremental progress all along the way.”

LISTEN: St. John’s Lavin talks tourney, turnaround with Boomer & Carton

Lavin left the broadcast booth in April to take over the St. John’s program and he inherited a team with 10 seniors, all of whom had never been in the NCAA tournament or the Top 25.

“Initially, I focused on all the same things that I found attractive about the program. That if you’re competitive, whether you’re an athlete or coach, to be part of an opportunity to return St. John’s basketball to its rightful place as the crown jewel of college hoops in New York City, that in itself gets my heart started,” he said. “And I think kids, as well, were like, ‘Hey, when you win in New York, when you win in the Garden, it’s special.’ The same reasons Carmelo wanted to come back here.”

While the Red Storm are making their slam-dunk case to the selection committee, Lavin thinks the Big East has a tremendous chance to make waves on Selection Sunday.

“If no one stumbles and it plays out, in an ideal world, there could be as many as eleven,” Lavin said. “But at least nine.”

How far can Lavin take the Red Storm? Are we talking Final Four? Let us know in the comments below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

pixy Red Storms Lavin: At Least 9 Big East Teams Tourney Bound
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