It’s a busy time for the Duke basketball program as the team continues to prepare for the first official game of the season.
After Friday night’s exhibition against Augustana, all the games count, and I’m sure the Blue Devils are looking forward to getting the 2016-17 campaign started.
It was a relatively quiet week on the recruiting trail, though last weekend did prompt Duke to extend another scholarship offer for the class of 2018.
Here are the biggest headlines from the past week for Duke recruiting targets.
Is Darius Garland Leaning Toward Duke?
Darius Garland, a 5-star point guard in the class of 2018, was on campus last weekend and picked up an offer from Duke. The offer from the Blue Devils prompted many predictions on 247Sports that the 6’0”, 155-pounder from Brentwood, TN., would commit to the Blue Devils, which the site tracks with its Crystal Ball predictor. Garland is currently the No. 1 point guard and No. 9 overall player in the 2018 class in the 247Sports Composite. Duke has also already offered 2018 point guard Tre Jones, the younger brother of Tyus Jones.
New HS Diary Post on SLAM by Mohamed Bamba
I share a lot of blog/diary posts from current high school recruits, and this recent one by Mohamed Bamba for SLAM is one of the more unique ones I’ve come across. Instead of going into the typical fluff about recruitment and how he’s working hard to improve his game, Bamba describes how he’s put together a binder with information about the schools that are recruiting him, which includes details such as the school’s number of Fortune 500 CEOs, university endowment, and percentage of alumni in management positions. I highly encourage you to read the full post on SLAM’s website. Great stuff.
New Blog Post by Gary Trent Jr.
In his new post on USA Today, 2017 Duke target Gary Trent recaps all of his recent recruiting visits. The 5-star shooting guard from Minnesota was in Durham for Duke’s Countdown to Craziness event, which he attended with fellow 2017 5-star Wendell Carter. Jayson Tatum was their host for the weekend and it sounds like Duke still has the unique advantage of being the one school that offers the players the opportunity of playing together in college. Trent is also still considering Michigan State and UCLA. Read his entire post on his Trent’s Truth blog.
Kevin Knox Recaps Duke Visit
Though Duke fans were hoping the Blue Devils could steal a commitment from Kevin Knox during his official visit last weekend, the 5-star wing in the 2017 class will be waiting until February or March in 2017 to make his decision, according to a quote on ZagsBlog. Knox said he enjoyed his visit to Duke and that the coaches used guys like Grant Hill and NBA All-Star Paul George as players who compare to Knox. Obviously, Mike Krzyzewski worked with Hill at Duke and with George as part of USA Basketball. Cue all the hand-wringing about Coach K’s unfair recruiting advantage. Knox is considering Duke along with North Carolina, Kentucky and Florida State.
Hamidou Diallo Cuts Duke from List
Hamidou Diallo showed interest in Duke earlier this summer, but things didn’t materialize as the Blue Devils opted to put more attention toward Gary Trent Jr. and Kevin Knox, who are clearly the priorities for the wing positions for the 2017 class. Diallo, the No. 1 shooting guard in the class of 2017 in the 247Sports Composite, announced his list of final six schools he’s considering this week, and it didn’t include Duke. He’ll be deciding between Kentucky, UConn, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas and Syracuse, though many believe it will likely come down to Connecticut and Kentucky.
Thanks for checking out this week’s Duke basketball recruiting roundup. Give us a follow at @DukeReport on Twitter to keep up with more news about the Blue Devils!