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The Curious Case of Marques Bolden

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

Duke and Kentucky fans have been waiting for weeks (and in some cases months) for Marques Bolden to announce where he will be attending college next year. Bolden is listed as the top ranked center and No. 17 overall player, according to 247sports.com.

He’s also been one of the most difficult-to-read 5-star recruits Duke has targeted in quite some time.

At one point, Bolden indicated he wanted to make his college decision by his birthday on April 17. Many recruiting insiders believe he would announce his decision at the Jordan Brand Classic, which was televised on ESPN and took place a few days before his birthday. Then, the event came and went with no announcement.

Others felt he would decide by his birthday, but possibly announce at his high school – DeSoto High School outside of Dallas, Tex., the same school that current Duke guard Matt Jones attended.

That announcement still hasn’t happened.

Marques Bolden, a gifted 6’10”, 240-pounder who projects to make an immediate impact next season for any college team, seems to be genuinely struggling with his decision.

“It’ll be either blue and white or blue and white,” DeSoto coach Chris Dyer told the Montgomery Advertiser.

Is this a case of a young man who is a people pleaser and doesn’t want to have to tell someone “No?” Those who have been around Bolden don’t seem to have a single bad thing to say about him. The criticism is primarily coming from unhappy fans because he hasn’t chosen their school yet.

Could Bolden be waiting to see how rosters shake out? Both schools will have a heavy post presence next season.

Duke’s roster is set now that National Letter of Intent began on April 13th and ends May 18th. Athletes aren’t required to sign a NLI, though it helps to almost guarantee them a spot at a school if they do. With both Duke and Kentucky wanting Bolden and having the roster spot available, he could skip the NLI process by just committing and signing an athletic scholarship agreement.

While everyone would love for Bolden to commit today, it still could be a while before he does. Duke likes to have its incoming class arrive in time for the second session of summer school to get acclimated to the university and get a jump start on working with the coaching staff. This year, the second term begins on July 5th.

It’s a big decision for the young man and hopefully everyone will respect that he is having a hard time deciding. Also, everyone should be respectful of the decision when it finally comes.

So, where do you think Marques Bolden will attend college? Let us know in the poll below!