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Suddenly, Rutgers hoops the place to be

Steve Lavin and St. John’s enjoyed a big NYC-area recruiting moment Tuesday. Maybe if Mike Rice had a moment, he’d get a chuckle out that.

Rutgers’ new coach secured commitments from two second four-star recruits in the last two days, both of whom are NYC-area standouts. Forward Kadeem Jack, a 6-8 forward, and guard Myles Mack, a 5-11 point guard, give the Scarlett Knights an instant upgrade in talent for the 2011-12 season. Maybe even a draw for the locals.

“I wanted to stay close to home so all my family and friends can me see me play,” Mack told “I didn’t want to go too far. I’m used to my parents coming to all my games.”

Jack and Mack aren’t the first to hook with Rutgers, either. Rice has been on a roll all summer, scoring guys like Jordan Goodman, Derrick Randall and Malick Kone. That’s a group of players who’ll help Rutgers inch up the Big East standings, and maybe even fight for a conference crown.

Your move, Lavin

Mike Miller’s also on Twitter @BeyndArcMMiller, usually talkin’ hoops. Click here for more.