DURHAM, N.C. – Five student-athletes – Zamari Ellis, Casey Holman, Gunnar Holmberg, Jeremiah Lewis and Jack Wohlabaugh – have joined the Blue Devil football program, head coach David Cutcliffe announced on Wednesday in conjunction with the beginning of Duke’s spring semester.
Ellis, a 6-4, 240-pound tight end from Henderson, N.C., is a consensus three-star prospect and rated as the No. 27 tight end in the nation by Rivals.com. The No. 27 tight end in the country by Rivals.com, was named to the 2016 USA Today N.C. all-state first team before missing his senior campaign at Southern Vance due to a foot injury.
Holman, a 6-4, 285-pound offensive lineman from Snellville, Ga., was a first team all-region pick by the 7-AAAAAA coaches as both a junior and senior. During his final campaign, Holman, from Brookwood High School, was named the Touchdown Club of Gwinnett Co-Offensive Lineman of the Year and led Brookwood to an 11-3 record, including a 6-0 region mark to win the Region 7-AAAAAAA title.
Holmberg, a 6-3, 180-pound quarterback from Wake Forest, N.C., is a four-star prospect and ranked as the No. 26 pocket passing quarterback in the nation by ESPN.com. He set the Heritage High School single-season records with 2,730 passing yards and 26 touchdowns as a senior while leading the Huskies to a 12-2 record and a berth in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association 4A state quarterfinals.
Lewis, a 6-0, 180-pound cornerback from Plano, Texas, helped Prestonwood Christian High School to the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS) Division I state championship game three times, claiming the title twice including the 2017 crown. In his final high school game, Lewis and the Lions rallied from 18 points down in the third quarter to defeat St. Pius X, 42-41, to claim the program’s fifth TAPPS state title.
Wohlabaugh, a 6-4, 295-pound offensive lineman from Akron, Ohio, spent the 2016 and 2017 seasons with the Ohio State University before transferring to Duke. An Academic All-Big Ten selection following the 2017 campaign, Wohlabaugh will sit out the 2018 season due to NCAA transfer regulations and have two seasons of eligibility beginning in 2019. He did not see game action in his two seasons with the Buckeyes.
Duke finished the 2017 campaign with a 7-6 overall record including a 36-14 victory over Northern Illinois in the Quick Lane Bowl. The bowl game appearance marked the Blue Devils’ fifth in the last six seasons. Duke will open the 2018 season on September 1 at home against Army West Point.