by David Cassilo / @dcassilo

It feels like the 1990′s at Madison Square Garden again! The Knicks have the place rocking with their hot start and now the Red Storm have followed their lead and conjured up memories of Ron Artest, Felipe Lopez, Lavor Postell and Bootsy Thornton.

Although St. John’s picked up road wins at West Virginia and Providence to start the Big East season, it took Monday’s win over Georgetown to raise eyebrows. Behind 20 points from Dwight Hardy and a go-ahead basket by Justin Brownlee with 10 seconds left, the Red Storm shocked the Hoyas to jump to 3-0 in the conference.

With a stacked recruiting class, next year was supposed to be the year that St. John’s jumped back on the national scene, but the win over Georgetown may have pushed that date up.

From The Daily News:

St. John’s (10-3, 3-0) is alone in first place in the Big East. The Storm had lost its last 14 games against Top 25 teams, last beating one (Notre Dame) exactly two years to the day.

“This is why we came here,” said Hardy, whose team-high 20 points gave him six 20-point efforts in his last seven games. “This is what we live for: to play basketball in the best arena in the world and to get wins.” Brownlee added 15 points, seven rebounds and six assists in playing 40 minutes. Lavin said the game-winning bucket was an example of his skill and instincts that allow him to “make the court look smaller.”

With two games against Notre Dame and one against Syracuse next up, the Red Storm will have plenty of more chances to prove their legitimacy. Right now give the credit to two coaches. The first is obviously Steve Lavin, who has done a great job of changing the culture. The second? Rick Pitino, of course. He did pick the Red Storm to win the Big East.