The 6-foot-7 forward, whose twin Justin is committed to the University of Pittsburgh, becomes the school’s first New York City product to sign since Shamorie Ponds in 2016.
Champagnie was playing his AAU ball locally with New Heights’ NYC program and was an All-CHSAA performer in each of the last two seasons.
Elsewhere, coach Mike Anderson put the finishing touches on his coaching staff by bringing on Queens native Steve DeMeo.
“It is an honor to join Coach Anderson’s staff and begin this journey with him at St. John’s,” DeMeo said. “Having grown up in Queens, I have always had an affinity for St. John’s basketball and admired the program’s history,”
DeMeo was the head coach of the Northwest Florida State College, winning a national title and NJCAA Coach of the Year in 2015, along with previous stops at Newberry College, Monroe College and Bronx Community College following stints at Providence, Iona and Hofstra.
“He is a terrific coach and recruiter who has tremendous experience in all facets of college basketball,” Anderson said of DeMeo. “Steve’s coaching background in the metropolitan area and within the Big East Conference will be an important asset to our program.”
Anderson also introduced Paul Pressey as a special assistant to the head coach. Pressey was an NBA player from 1982-1993 with the Milwaukee Bucks, San Antonio Spurs and Golden State Warriors, averaging 10.6 points, 5.1 assists per game and 1.4 steals per game.
Pressey was an assistant coach on the NBA level from 1992-2016, including stops with the Warriors, Spurs, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers and, most recently, the Los Angeles Lakers.
“Paul has an innovative mind for the game coupled with tremendous experience as both a coach and a player,” said Anderson, who played with Pressey at the University of Tulsa in the early 1980’s. “As a former teammate, I can attest to Paul’s commitment to success and achieving it the right way, through hard work and dedication.”
“I am really excited to begin this new chapter of my basketball career at St. John’s and work alongside someone I have great admiration for as both a coach and a person,” added Pressey.