Big things are expected of St. John’s Harry Cooksley (Photo courtesy of St. John’s SID)

QUEENS, N.Y. – After exploding onto the scene in his first season of Division I soccer last year, St. John’s University forward Harry Cooksley has been unanimously selected to the Preseason All-Big East team, it was announced by the conference Wednesday afternoon.

Cooksley,  a senior, was one of two players in the conference to find his name on every preseason coaches ballot, joining Xavier’s Cory Brown as the league’s only unanimous picks. Brown, the league’s preseason defensive player of the year, is also a member of the latest watch list for the MAC Hermann Trophy.

A 2016 first team All-Big East selection and a second team National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-Region honoree, Cooksley registered a team-high 16 points, tallying five goals and six assists. His six assists tied for fourth in the conference, while his 4.47 shots per game led the circuit and ranked fourth in Division I.

Last season, the London native quickly proved to be one of the nation’s most electric talents, combining next-level skills with a penchant for heroics, most notably scoring the game-winner in the Red Storm’s 2-1 victory over No. 11 Butler Oct. 15.

The preseason team was announced in conjunction with the annual preseason coaches poll, which saw Providence garner unanimous selection as the favorite to repeat as regular season champions.

The Friars (81 points) were followed by Creighton (70) in second place, while Butler (68), Villanova (52) and Georgetown (46) rounded out the top half of the league. Xavier (45) finished sixth, followed by Marquette (30). The Johnnies came in eighth with 27 points, while DePaul (21) and Seton Hall (10) rounded out the poll..

The top three teams in the conference also found themselves mentioned in the United Soccer Coaches’ preseason poll, as Providence earned a No. 12 national ranking, Creighton checked in at No. 14 and Butler rounded out the field at No. 25.

St. John’s will play one more exhibition game before the start of the fall season, hosting LIU Brooklyn at Belson Stadium on Saturday at 8 p.m. The regular season will kick off six days later, as the Johnnies travel to Philadelphia to meet with Drexel Aug. 25 at 7:30 p.m.

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year

Mac Steeves, Providence, RS-Sr., F *

Preseason Defensive Player of the Year

Cory Brown, Xavier, Sr., D *

Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year

JT Marcinkowski, Georgetown, Jr. *


Men’s Soccer Preseason All-BIG EAST #

Ricky Lopez-Espin, Creighton, Sr., F

Mac Steeves, Providence, RS-Sr., F

Harry Cooksley, St. John’s, Sr., F ^

Lewis Suddick, Butler, So., M

Jared Timmer, Butler, Jr., M

Christopher Lema, Georgetown, Sr., M

Luka Prpa, Marquette, So., M

Andreas Bartosinksi, Villanova, Sr., M

Lucas Stauffer, Creighton, Jr., D

Mark Jecewiz, Providence, RS-Jr., D

Cory Brown, Xavier, Sr., D ^

JT Marcinkowski, Georgetown, Jr., GK

2017 BIG EAST Men’s Soccer Preseason Coaches’ Poll

First place votes in ( )

1. Providence (9)

81 pts.

2. Creighton (1)


3. Butler


4. Villanova


5. Georgetown


6. Xavier


7. Marquette


8. St. John’s


9. DePaul


10. Seton Hall


^ – denotes unanimous selection

# there is an extra player on the preseason All-BIG EAST team due to a tie in voting

* – won Preseason Offensive Player of the Year in 2016