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2016 5-Star Center Marques Bolden Picks Duke

Photo: Brian Spurlock-USATSI
Photo: Brian Spurlock-USATSI

The wait is over! A strong 2016 recruiting class for Duke got even stronger today with a commitment from Marques Bolden, a 5-star center in the class of 2016.

After a lengthy recruitment that seemed to take a number of turns and re-scheduled announcement dates, Bolden selected the Blue Devils over Kentucky and TCU, though it was widely considered to be a two-team race between Duke and Kentucky.

It has been one of the most unusual, unpredictable Duke recruitments I can ever remember, but patience paid off for Coach K and the Duke program as an already strong frontcourt for next season now gets even stronger.

Bolden is a 6’11”, 250-pound center from DeSoto, Tex., who’s ranked in the 247Sports Composite as the No. 1 center and No. 15 overall player in the 2016 class. During his senior season, he helped lead his DeSoto team a Texas state championship while averaging 23.4 points, 10.2 rebounds, and 2.6 blocks, which also earned him a spot on the McDonald’s All-American team.

The addition of Bolden gives Duke the top rated recruiting class for the 2016, as the Blue Devils will edge out Kentucky. He becomes the 4th 5-star player to be part of the incoming freshman class, joining Harry Giles, Jayson Tatum, and Frank Jackson.

The 2016 class will also include 4-star forward Javin DeLaurier and Australian wing Jack White.

By adding Bolden, Duke gets additional frontcourt depth and a player who will thrive in the low-post as a traditional center. It gives Mike Krzyzewski the luxury of having two players who are well-suited to play the 5-spot in Bolden and Chase Jeter, while also having guys who can rotate in that spot in Harry Giles and Amile Jefferson.

Duke will be thin at the point guard position, but there definitely shouldn’t be a repeat of the problems experienced last season when there was a severe lack of consistent frontcourt depth.

Welcome to the Duke family, Marques! It’s great to have you.