Ex-LI Lutheran Star, Illinois Transfer Andre Curbelo Joins Red Storm Hoops


The St. John’s men’s basketball team has added Illinois transfer and former Long Island Lutheran star Andre Curbelo, a 6-foot-1 junior guard from Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, yesterday the program announced on its website.

Curbelo comes to Queens after two seasons at Illinois, where he earned 2021 Big Ten Sixth Man of the Year and All Freshman-Team honors.

“We are excited to welcome Andre home and thrilled to have him join the St. John’s Basketball family,” Head Coach Mike Anderson said in a press release. “Andre is an electric guard with tremendous experience who adds a new dimension to our talented backcourt. He has great basketball instincts, and his skill set fits our style of play perfectly. Andre’s veteran presence can be invaluable for our team moving forward.”

Curbelo averaged 7.5 points, 3.1 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 19 appearances this past season. Curbelo, who started the first four games of the 2021-22 campaign, was sidelined for nearly two months due to injury. He returned to the lineup in mid-January and came off the bench in 15 contests while helping Illinois advance to the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament for the second straight year.

Curbelo sparkled as a freshman in 2020-21, averaging 9.1 points, 4.0 rebounds and ranked sixth in the Big Ten with 4.2 assists per game.

Curbelo, who was a highly touted recruit out of Long Island Lutheran High School, shined on the same squad of current Red Storm rising sophomores Rafael Pinzon and Drissa Traore

A two-time Newsday All-Long Island Player of the Year, Curbelo averaged 16.7 points, 8.1 assists, 7.6 rebounds and 3.6 steals as a senior at LuHi.

— Jerry Del Priore

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