New St. John's Coach Steve Lavin, the former UCLA basketball coach, has wasted little time in using his West Coast connections and recruiting skills.
Dwayne Polee Jr., the Los Angeles City Section player of the year from Westchester High, said Thursday he has accepted a scholarship to St. John's and will sign a letter of intent on Friday.
"[Lavin] told me the style of play he's going to have, and I feel him and his coaching staff will make me a better player," Polee said.
St. John's was a late arrival in the competition for Polee's services after hiring Lavin on March 30. Polee, a onetime USC recruit, also considered Georgia and Oregon.
Lavin was prohibited by NCAA rules from commenting about Polee's news because the player has not yet signed a letter of intent.
The 6-foot-7 Polee led Westchester to a 32-3 record and City Section and state Division I championships and averaged 20 points, nine rebounds and two blocks a game. He is one of the best leapers in California.
St. John's is scheduled to play at UCLA next year on Feb. 5, a homecoming for Lavin and Polee.