The Latest On Duke Prospect Brandon Ingram

SONY DSCBlue Devil Nation checks in with prospect Brandon Ingram to get his latest thoughts from the recruiting trail.

How do you feel like you’ve played this weekend?

I think I played pretty well after a slow start. We got down big an competed and came back.

You said you got in really late last evening.  Did that effect your play?

Maybe, but I would not use that as an excuse. I’m playing better ow but I played terrible the first day.

On his game and how he sees it …

Just your aggressive player and teammate and I try to get my shot going and get after it. Once my shot is going I can see that open the lane and that helps other parts of my game.

Have you bonded or do you hang out with any players on the AAU circuit?

I haven’t really bonded with that many here yet, but I have at various camps, like Carlton Bragg. I have seen him in Europe to Vegas and out here. I’ve talked to Dennis Smith a lot.

What is the one thing you like about Duke the most?

The way they exploit their players, The coach knows everything about you and exposes your talent and puts you in the right position to succeed.

UNC is recruiting you as well.  Can you tell us what you are most impressed about from them?

The Tar Heels make you family. Coach Roy is a great guy.

You play on the same circuit as Chase Jeter.  Have you two guys ever talked of playing together?

I’ve watched him a lot actually. I have watched him as a big man. I don’t know if we’ll ended up playing together, we haven’t really talked about it, but we talk a little about camps coming up, like Adidas Nations.

In state schools are all over you.  Can you tell me when each came into the picture?

Well, at first it was N.C. State, then it was Wake Forest and North Carolina and Duke.

What was it like when Duke came in?

I had heard they were looking at me a lot. It’s funny because I don’t think Coach K had been to a lot of my games, yet he knows everything about me. He told me a lot about myself that I didn’t even know and he’s watched a lot of film on me.

What else did he have to share?

Just that he knew how versatile I was and spoke to my strengths and weaknesses.

And you grew up a Duke fan …

Yes, I have been. I liked the way they played in transition. I just grew up watching them and use to play with Duke on the NCAA video games.

What was said before their offer?

People say academics at Duke is very hard. Coach started out telling me how good a player I was and how I’d be used and then came the offer.

Speaking of lineage, Duke Assistant Jeff Capel has that being in the Fayetteville area. Has he talked to you about any of that?

Yeah he has. He said he was leaning towards another school but Coach K came in and he fell in love with him and since that day he knew he wanted to come to Duke and it’s been a great experience since.

I saw that the Cameron Crazies tried to get you to come sit with them this past season. You kind of played the ignore card are were cool about it. Do you think you might go over next time?

I might go over next time. It’s kind of crazy over there and it was very hot.

The Duke vs UNC game … that was a wild one.

Yes, that was a wild one and they just go crazy and it was a competitive game where they stand the while time. I mean, it’s very different from watching on TV

He was scheduled to visit NCSU unofficially this past week but canceled for the NBA Camp.  We have another partial interview and or will add more to this one shortly.  Despite all the chatter out there, he still seems like a Duke lean to me.

eron gordon

Eron Gordon Set To Visit Duke

eron gordonCombo guard Eron Gordon is set to visit Duke this coming Monday for an unofficial visit to campus once the NBAPA Top 100 Camp concludes.  You may remember his brother Eric who starred at IU, but this 2016 prospect sis trying to forge his on name and future.

What was it like to hear from Duke?

It was nice hearing from Duke. They’ve always been one of my favorite teams along with IU and Purdue.

When did they get in touch?

It was all of a sudden a few weeks ago, my Dad was contacted by Coach K and said he like how I play.

How do you feel about fitting in with them should you in time go there?

I can play the one or two and a lot of two because I have some good guards on my team. I think I would fit well because they have a lot of versatile players, like Jabari Parker played the 3 to 5.

Do you look at who they’re recruiting roster and things like that?

It’s more about where I fit and I’ve known a lot of guys who could do that.

And you are set to take a visit to Duke?

Yes, I will visit Duke on Monday. Basically my Dad had contacted Duke for a little minute and he just talked to some assistant coaches they said why not come down here while you’re in the area. Coach K has talked to my brother and was in contact with him a month or two ago, so that’s how it came about.

Many feel IU is a lock or the leader, anything to that?

No. That’s not the case and never the case. They showed me a lot of interest when I was I the 8th grade, so they were like the first ones in. They’ve been trying to build up their program. Indiana is no of my only favorite schools, there are others.

Like who?

Duke, North Car … Michigan, Louisville, Kansas and Purdue.(For accuracy sake it sounds like he started to mention UNC but he did not finish it before stopping mid word and rattling off the other schools listed. as if to correct himself)

What do you like about Duke?

Basically I just like how they play. They play half court and full court and play off of their defense which is exactly how I play off the defense. I play a lot of half court full court and you see a lot and I’m more like a combo so you see a lot of guys on their teams.  I have seen their players bring it up and post up in the same game. A lot of colleges don’t do that and feel it’s like my game a lot.

What about Michigan?

I am really high on Michigan and how they get up and down and play their guards. Knowing some of their guys were not top 100 picks and yet they’ve developed into player going into the league helps out.

Are there any schools out there you would want an offer from?

Um, basically all of them. I just want to be recruited a little bit more so that it helps my options. I was held back my freshman year because my brother was at IU, so we gave up a lot.

So, you are in the infancy stage with concern to assessing your recruiting?

Yes, I am in the infancy stage. I’ve started to get a lot of offers and have been recruited harder of late. Now that I am playing well a lot of the bigger programs are coming on and that’s been a true blessing.

Who would you compare your game to or who would you like to ball like?

I’d say I’m a lot like Dwayne Wade, a combo guard, but I am hoping to play more point, but basically I am trying to get my game into a point.

How do you think you see people right now? More of a tweener or a two?

I think people say I’m a combo but some say a point.

What are the most important factors for you as far as a school goes?

Who all is on the coaching staff, how they play and what their campus is like. Relationships is the big on and things around campus.

It sounds like you might be leaning towards the big schools now, is that accurate?

No, not really. I like Butler and how they run things. It did hurt to see brad Stevens go because he was one of the first to recruit me but they’re still on of my higher ones.

So going to a school where you would likely get the ball put in your hands with less doubt would be an attractive option?

Yes, that helps but I do want to be challenged. I am pretty sure you have to look at every division one college and work to get you a spot.

How was your recent trip like to Louisville?

That was a really good visit for me. I got more familiar with the coaches and players and that was a really fun visit for me. Meeting the coaches and seeing campus it was fun visit. A lot of people really work hard over there and there are some friendly people.

Any offer?

No but it should be close.

What is your relationship like with Kenny Johnson? (Johnson coached at IU and now Louisville and is generally considered a good recruiter by his peers.)

He was close to my brother Evan. Pitino likes how he like the game.

What did they (Louisville) say about an offer, anything?

I talked to Coach Pitino in the phone and he said he’d really like to see me in one of their uniforms.

Would you consider committing to them today with an offer?

No. (Definitive) I wouldn’t commit to any college this soon.

You said you were going to visit Duke on Monday.  What other schools are on your future agenda?

I am going to Duke next Monday and going to Kansas on Tuesday or Wednesday and on Friday I will be at Michigan. I am hoping to visit Kentucky in August but if I can in July, I will.

Who are some of the guys on the AAU circuit you get along with or are pals?

Kyle, Guy and most of the guys I grew up with. (Note that he is on the Adidas circuit) I;m close to Seventh a little bit.

What is it about Seventh that everybody likes?

He’s just extremely humble and a good kid despite the hype. A lot of guys like him and myself get a lot of attention and I just think it’s important to remain humble.

You have had a long relationship with Crean, talk about that?

It was really fun seeing that but in the recruiting process, I think I just need to look around. I am not saying I am not going to IU or that I am. James Blackman likes them as well but he still wants to see what is out there. I want to take a good look at the whole landscape.

What do you want to see or learn when you visit different campuses?

I just want to learn who is in charge and how they run their game style and how they do things around campus.

In closing he was also asked of the Adidas vs Nike thing which we all hear of so often and he said it was irrelevant. IU is an Adidas school. He said there was no pressure and that a Nike school would be a good destination if it was a fit.  Still, with IU being an Adidas school, they are surely a player here.  This one is already heating up and moving forward this will be a battle to watch.  I am scheduled to follow up after his visit, so hopefully that will happen.

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Prospect Juwon Durham Talks Duke and Recruiting

SONY DSCJuwon Durham plays his AAU ball for Team Breakdown and that means his next stop is the Peach Jam in North Augusta, but this weekend he’s participating in the NBAPA Top 100 Camp and it’s loaded with good competition.  Durham stands 6-9 without shoes and has a slender frame, much like current Duke player Amile Jefferson did at his age.  Durham is a Class of 2016 product who hails from Tampa, Florida and he’s starting to garner plenty of attention from college coaches.  I caught up to Durham for this one on one interview -

If somebody had never seen you play, how would you describe your game in your own words?

I’m a good post up guy who can knock down an open jumps shot and a contested one too. I feel like I handle the ball pretty well for a tall guy and feel like I’m just a good low post player right now.

Any summer plans, like skills academies?

No, not at this time.

Which schools have been the most aggressive with you of late?

Duke has been pretty aggressive. Louisville, Florida are the ones I can think of off the top of my head. Tennessee and IU have offered as well.

Have all those schools offered, Duke?

Yes.

Who will be involved in your decision-making process when it comes down to decision time?

My family and myself.

What can you do here to improve your game at this prestigious camp?

I need to run the floor better, because most of the guys are stronger than me. I just need to battle through.

You mentioned that Duke called.  Who did you talk to from their staff?

Jon Scheyer contacted me. He called my mom as soon as we were able to talk to the coaches. He called my Dad as well. I’ve yet to talk to them personally.  I haven’t talked to him of yet, but probably will.

Your mom is handling most calls or contacts?

Yes, my parents.

What do you think about Duke?

I like Duke, there a pretty good team. I like how they develop their big men and make them versatile. They allow you to flash out and shoot the jump shot. I think it was Ryan Kelly?

Yes.

He was able to do that kind of thing. I like watching them. I am not as strong as some down low, so I try to be more versatile with my game.

What are you looking for in a school?

Good academics, because I want a career after basketball and just a system I can see myself running in.

Did you have a dream school growing up?

Growing up I liked North Carolina.

The Tar Heels, okay. Have they been involved?

Yes sir.

Is this one of those deal breakers or if they offer is it a done deal?

I think they did offer but everything has changed because other schools have become involved, so I can’t keep my heart set on any one team.

Do you try to pattern your game after any NBA players?

I try to play a bit like Kevin Garnett, Karl Malone, Scottie Pippen and guys like that.

How about growth. Have you talked to your doctor or are you still growing?

Yes, we just did a thing where I was 6-9 without shows and an inch taller with them. That’s all I know right now but the doctor said I could grow more.

Note – Duke does not offer kids until Coach K sees them play and or talks to them in person, so his answer was a misunderstanding with concern to a Duke offer.  But the Blue Devils are showing interest in what seems like their type of kid per my chat.

Dennis Smith

Duke Prospect Dennis Smith Talks Recruiting

Dennis SmithThe NBAPA Top 100 camp is underway where some of the best prospects in the nation converge on Charlottesville, Virginia.  One of the key Duke targets this season is Dennis Smith a solid PG prospect from in state.  Smith had a solid first effort as he got accustomed to his teammates in his first outing and he took time to talk recruiting with Blue Devil Nation afterwards.

What has the NBA Camp been like so far?

It’s a lot different and more instruction so it’s good for the young players here. It’s been a good experience so far.

How did your team fare and what are you looking to learn from the camp?

We did pretty good as a team, we won by about 20, so it was a good team effort. I think I played well. I got more comfortable by the final quarter as I got use to my team. The one thing I want to get from the camp is to go home a better student of the game.

You picked up an offer from NC State recently …

N.C. State is one I was waiting for in that I grew up a fan. The other ACC schools are Duke, Miami and Wake Forest.

How do you feel about the Wake Forest offer?

I don’t know too much about Wake Forest. I know they had Chris Paul. Duke has Coach K and that speaks for itself.

Have you taken any unofficial visits this summer.?

I took one to Duke about three weeks ago.  I talked to Coach K a lot and took a look at the campus and picked up an offer while there.

Was that exciting for you?

Definitely.

What do you think about Coach K and Duke?

One of the most prestigious programs in college basketball and one of the best coaches. He’s coached pro’s and college players, so he definitely knows what he’s doing. He’s not going to recruit a point guard, so in 2016, he wants me to come in and play.

What does that mean to you?

It means a lot. It’s an honor to be recruited by Coach K.

Who has been the most aggressive school of late for your future services?

Duke.

What are your plans for the rest of the summer?

I will be playing in Myrtle Beach, but I have no more visits planned except probably UNC. Coach Williams called me so I may get up that way. He talked with me for about thirty minutes when he called.

Who are the latest schools to offer?

I’ve got an offer from Kansas and VCU. I have heavy interest from Arizona and Michigan as well.

Dennis, will you be going to any developmental camps?

I am going to the Kyrie Irving Camp in New York as soon as this camp is over.

What will be the deciding factors when picking a school?

Style of play and whichever school has the best family environment.

Any schools who have a style of play you like recruiting you?

Yes. Duke and VCU.

Both those team use three guard lineups at times, is that the reason?

It doesn’t matter as long as there is guard play and active pick and rolls.

Did you have a favorite player or one you like to watch or pattern your game after.

I like Damian Lilliard.

You mentioned Kyrie Irving earlier. Is that a player you have watched play a lot?

I was at Duke recently and he was there shooting about and we got to talk some. I’ve watched a lot of his games.

What was your first memory of college basketball?

I didn’t really start watching a lot of college basketball until John Wall went in.

He’s from your area more or less. Have you learned anything from players like John Wall or Rodney Purvis who didn’t have immediate success?

He hasn’t had a good college career yet but he should get it right this time. (on Purvis)

What is Coach K’s message as to how he will use you?

He wants you use me just like he did Kyrie Irving.

What was your recent European experience like during Adidas Nations?

They play differently, pro’s and college ages guys. They play a whole different style to get shooters open with off ball screens.

What do you need to work on the most with concern to your game?

My defense. Playing better defense.

Do you hang out or get along with any players on the AAU circuit?

Me and Seventh Woods are like brothers. He’ll come to my house and I will go down there. And Harry Giles and Jayson Tatum.

Have you talked to Seventh about playing together?

No. Not yet.

Who will play key roles in helping you make a decision?

Mostly my Dad. Family.

Is that where you learned your hoops skill set from?

Yes, my Dad.

Coaches could call recently.  Was it crazy for you?

The craziest thing that happened to me is the Florida State contacted me about football and basketball?

Jimbo Fisher?

No, I haven’t talked to him yet. But I returned all my calls and there were a lot of them. UNC, Texas, NCSU, Duke, Wake and VCU all called.

Who do you talk with from UNC?

Coach Williams and C.B. McGrath. There is no set date but I will take a visit. I think the interest is pretty high from them right now. Williams said he would come to some of my games in person. He did that last year some. He told me he’d already offered me and he was one of the first

Who is the lead assistant that talks to you from Duke?

I actually talk to all of them, but Coach Capel is the main one. But Coach James and Scheyer as well.

Big Georgia DL Tre McSwain committed to Duke on Monday night.

Duke Football adds big commitment from Georgia DL Trevon McSwain

Big Georgia DL Tre McSwain committed to Duke on Monday night.
Big Georgia DL Tre McSwain committed to Duke on Monday night.

While the USMNT was busy finishing off Ghana at the World Cup, Duke Football stayed hot on the recruiting trail. The class of 2015 has hit double digits with the Monday evening addition of DL Trevon McSwain, a 6’6″ 230 pound prospect out of Lanier High School. McSwain chose the Blue Devils over 20 other offers including Tennessee, Georgia Tech, NC State, Vanderbilt, and Wisconsin. A recent trip to Durham for the Saturday Night Live Elite Camp sealed the deal for the stud defensive lineman. McSwain is a consensus high 3-star prospect by all of the major recruiting services.

The Blue Devils had also picked up a commitment from fellow DL Marquies Price after the SNL camp.

Newly minted WR Coach Jeff Faris was the first to #RingTheBell on Twitter, calling it a “historic day” for Duke Football. Faris has been the primary recruiter for several members of the class of 2015.

McSwain’s highlights are available here.

Stay tuned to BDN for more on the Duke Football class of 2015 and the upcoming season.

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Checking in with Duke PG Quinn Cook

SONY DSCSONY DSCSONY DSCA few Duke Basketball players will remain on campus this summer and work on their game, while others will take a brief trip home in June before returning in July.  Cook was present at the recent Coach K Academy where he answered some brief questions for Blue Devil Nation, sharing that Semi Ojeleye would take Rodney Hood’s old and what he had learned from players who have moved on since his time in Durham.

What have you been up to since the season ended and what are your plans for this summer?

I’ll be here all summer. You get an option to go home in June, but right now I’m taking classes with Semi. So, I’ve just been here working out since the season ended.

And Semi lives with you now?

Yes.  Semi lives in our house now. Rodney was living with us but he left, so he’s in his room and we’re having a good time.

So, are you getting AARP mail yet? You’re the old man on this team now. Is it hard to believe this will be your senior season?

Naw, I can’t. I can’t. I’m the senior on this team and it’s for real so I’m ready to grab hold of the challenge and opportunity.. I see guys around during the K Academy who’ve played here ahead of me, like Austin and the older players, but now it’s my turn, so it’s for real. I mean, great teams, especially here at Duke always have great seniors. You don’t want your last year to be something you are going to regret. I’ve been fortunate enough to play with a lot of great seniors like Miles, Mason, Ryan … and those guys have helped show me the way and I think I’m ready to help my team in the same way.

What is the plan from the staff for you this season? What do they expect from you?

To be the leader, the big brother on the team and help the young guys out and just be there everyday because you don’t get the practices, workouts and eventually the games back.