Category Archives: Duke Basketball Recruiting News

Members Update

[private]We are entering your names into the new site's system and hope to make the permanent move soon.  Your patience has been appreciated.  I can assure you that once the dust clears and refinements have been made, the information will be what you have come to expect from BDN.

It's been a really crazy month with the Olympics and start of the Cutcliffe era.  As you know, I covered the return at RDU and will have some comments from that by the weekend.  Also, Coach is addressing the local and national media tomorrow and I will be there to bring you the happenings.

I have a few interviews lined up and some already in the bag.  For instance, I talked to Duke commitment Andre Dawkins tonight to finish up an article for a  publication.  Of course, you will hear it all later.

I know you want to know if he has talked to Josh Hairston.  The answer is they talk often.  Andre said Josh would take another unofficial to Duke and likely other schools in the coming month, making a decision as early as late September.

"Coach K called me before the Gold Medal game which was pretty cool," said Dawkins.  He went onto say he would likely call Coach tonight.

Dawkins played with Tyler Thornton as a youngster, but doesn't talk to him as much as Josh.  He plans on getting Tyler's number though.  Dawkins wants to play for K so bad that he worried about a jump to the NBA after coaching the likes of LeBron and Kobe.

We are turning over some stones to find out what is up, making sure information is accurate before it is released.  You can count on an update in the coming days.

We will cover football recruiting as we have basketball.  Look for talks with prospects starting next week.  As I have mentioned, we will keep football information free for two months in an effort to draw fans in.  While I realize the core of my members are hoops fanatics, covering football will bring other fans who love basketball as well.

So, don't fret too much faithful members!  We will steady the ship soon enough, making it through the seas of change.[/private]

SJC Pro Am gearing up for the stretch run (corrected)

[private]Elliot Williams helped his E-Net team to it's third victory scoring 19 points in the process.  Williams had a fabulous first half where he at times seemed to be posturing for a highlight reel.  There was one sequence where he showed of his athletic ability.  He slashed to the basket finishing with an authoritative dunk which brought ooh's and ahh's from the crowd.  He then created a break after a turnover as he slithered through the defense only to be found with the pass where he finished by using the basket to his advantage for a reverse lay in.  IOW, he played a huge role for his team tonight and shows he is not afraid to play against anybody at this level.

He didn't do it all by himself though.  He was aided by Brandon Costner whose presence has helped E-Net win consecutive games.  Costner was strong in the paint, an area that had plagued his team in early losses.  E-Net was down by 10 points early, but stormed back to go up by 11 and hung on for a victory over.  Former Pack player Anthony Grundy led all scorers and has showed significant improvement since his days in Raleigh.

Three Dukies took to the court for the RDU Barnstormers in a game that would prove a defensive struggle.  The more talented Barnstomrers eventually won 48-47.  This team is guard heavy and guard dominated.  In fact, there is way too much dribbling and forced shots where they try to make the big play instead of finding the open man.  Sometimes the efficient plays bode better for the team than forcing the issue.

For the first time, SIngler was able to get a breather, alternating with Czyz.  I am not too sure how effective this was for the four guard lineup hurt in my humble opinion.  Singler struggled a bit on offense, possibly because last seasons ACC Rookie of the Year got five whole shots, making a deuce and a three.  He got to the line often, going 6 of 10 for a total of 12 points.  What many missed is that he is willing to do the dirty work and little things which equate to 5 blocked shots and 8 rebounds.

Low and behold, Olek Czyz didn't get a dunk tonight.  That's because he was used as a hacking dummy in an effort to keep the crowd favorite grounded.  Olek was 10 for 16 from the free throw stripe and that was all of his points.  He added 3 boards to go with 2 steals.

Nolan Smith is saddled on a team with many guards and it keeps the ball out of the hands of the talented player.  Nolan tossed in 15 points going 4 of 6 from the field and 3 of 3 from the line.  You would think with that kind of efficiency his teammates might get the rock in his hands more often.  He was smooth in his movement and his first half performance kept his team in the game.  Smith had 3 steals and a couple of assists as his team went to 6-3 which is still good enough for second place.

Lance Thomas was the man tonight and had to be for there was no Jerry Stackhouse, Green nor Davis for the Regulators.  After two consecutive dunks, LT helped his team to an early 29-12 lead.  During one sequence, LT dunked, rushed back to play the passing lanes, made the steal, dished to a teammate to start the break and finished it off with a reverse dunk.  Lance is a hustle guy who goes 100%  while he  in the game.  The wheels came off for the Regulators in the second half as they went down to a one point defeat, 57-56 blowing a 20 point lead.  Thomas had 17 points and a bevy of boards in the Regulators only loss thus far.  My report from the scorers table says LT was hacked hard as time ran out, but no whistle was heard.  Hopefully, a bit more consistency will ensue with the playoffs looming.

I didn't catch the nightcap, but got a call from the statistician who told me Gerald Henderson has 12 points with his team winning a 54-51 game over   There was no doubt that the overall play was hurt by physical foul-fests and forced shots on this evening.  Still, that's to be expected in basketball where o n a given night many things can happen.

The tournament will continue on Tuesday night with the final regular games and they will be hard fought in that they are jockeying for play off position.  They will then start the playoffs where the team are one and done.  So, get out there and support your favorite players!  The crowds have been consistent and again, there is an accommodating atmosphere at McDougald Gymnasium.

Standings going into the last regular game - Regulators (Lance Thomas) 8-1, RDU Barnstormers (Kyle Singler, Nolan Smith, Olek Czyz)  6-3, Team Williams 5-4, Team KG (Gerald Henderson) 5-4, Team Noel 4-5, Black Magic 3-6, E-Net (Elliot Williams, Steve Johnson) 3-6,  Team Felton 2-7 (Duke players in parentheses)

Official Pro Am Site Link

Pictures - (1) Elliot taking a three, (2) Elliot and Steve Johnson with Ridge and Corey (two of the kids our members sent to Carrawell James Basketball Camp), (3) LT readies to dunk[/private]

General Update – Boynton, targets

Let me start with a little talk of the "coming" new site.  We should have it up and running within ten days, but it will be a work in progress.  It may look similar to this one at first, but will undergo a face lift.  The goal is to get the premium section up and running asap.  I appreciate your patience of late with concerns to this issue.

You have to love the way David Cutcliffe and staff are recruiting.  We will cover football more once the dust clears.  In fact, I will be at the Duke kickoff lunch this Sunday and will give you the skinny. FWIW, there are two more names which should surface or commit by next week, making it 21.  They will save a few offers, like other schools do for the big guns which commit at the last minute.  That is unless they get who they want now and move on to 2010.  A new scoreboard is about to go up in the closed end of the horseshoe.  We'll show you a pic soon.

[private]I have been informed that the Duke Basketball Staff has turned their focus to the class of 2010.  That, of course, does not include Kenny Boynton.  They stay in contact with the Boyntons and will do so throughout the Olympic Games.  Terrell Vincent is out at this point which should free him to go to Villanova.  If Duke misses on Boynton, they will see who is still out there, meaning maybe Nick Russell.  They are still evaluating Jamil Wilson and he is the only kid which could get an offer at this time.

Kenny Boynton hit a go ahead three pointer with 38 seconds remaining to give defending champ Team Breakdown (6-0) a 61-59 victory against the Richmond Squires in U-17 play.Team Breakdown will play Philly Pride in a quarterfinal today at 11:30 a.m. The semifinals will be today at 5:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.  There will be 2:30 p.m. final Friday should they advance  This ends the AAU season for Boynton and Knight.  I will keep you informed and should have a final from his last game shortly.  Nate James is keeping tabs on Boynton and Knight.

Despite the questioning at DBR, I can assure you that Brandon Knight does have an official offer.

The scoreboard is here!  The new scoreboard is going up in Cameron Indoor Stadium as I type.  It will be finished next week.  It of course will have video screens.  Also, there are planners about talking of Wallace Wade changes.

And then there is 09's Thomas Robinson ... Duke is evaluating him, b ut the genral feeling is that they could be late.  There could also be other issues which would make it so Duke could not offer.

As for Tyler Thorton and Josh Hairston, well, Duke hope to get them both soon.  If one commits, look for the other one shortly behind.  Georgetown is the team which came hard after both players once Duke offered.[/private]

Boynton, Knight lead Team Breakdown to Reebok Title

Kenny Boynton Jr. (2009) scored 26 points leading his team to a win in the open division championship game of the Reebok Summer Championships just outside of Las Vegas.

Breakdown lost the second game of the tournament to D-One Sports, but this game was never in doubt as indicated by the 81-64 score.

Brandon Knight (2010) chipped in 24 points.  Team Breakdown (Florida) avenged an earlier loss to D-One Sports which features John Wall who averaged 23.6 for the tournament and Ryan Kelly (16.6).

It was Knight that helped his team in the two prior games where he scored 25 and 22 which was a key to advancing.  Team Breakdown finished the event 8-1.

Boynton and Knight told the Blue Devil Nation at an earlier event that their goal was to win the title and both mentioned coming close wasn't the way they wanted to close out the summer.  Their team lost in the final to Belmont Shores last year.  Kenny Boynton, of course is being heavily recruited by the Blue Devils and has long been their top target in the class of 2009.

Weekend scoring totals -

Kenny Boynton - 33, 21, 26, 26, 25, 17, 12, 14, 26 - 22.2

Brandon Knight - 26, 24, 2, 19, 22, 20, 25, 22, 24 - 20.4

Friday Morning Links

Starting off with AAU Basketball and Las Vegas, Kenny Boynton and Brandon Knight have scored 33/26, 21/24, and 26/19, respectively over the past three days.  The two have combined to make 17 three point shots.  Jody Demling has an extensive update from Las Vegas posted on his blog at the Louisville Courier-Journal.

The Las Vegas Review Journal has written a positive article on the ability of lesser known athletes to achieve exposure via the AAU circuit.  Adam Zagoria and Dick Weiss also have updates on their blogs.

Turning to Duke football and Desmond Scott on his decision to play for Duke University: "I wanted to play in my backyard."  WRAL.com has more here.

Finally, here is Coach K with more thoughts on USA Basketball.

Team USA, Kenny Boynton and Duke Football

When Kobe Bryant mentions the "joy of the game," you get an idea of what Coach K has done to make sure the players are enjoying themselves in preparation for the Olympics.  Most of the players remember little of the last time the USA won Gold.

In this blurb, the author says Team USA has that special something that is missing from most NBA teams.   There is some worry about the overall team health.  And here is CNNSI's Chris Ballard on long range planning for the USA Basketball program.

Kenny Boynton has no shortage of confidence judging from his comments in this link.

With kickoff to football season just over a month away, Coach Cutcliffe caught the attention of coaches on Wednesday's Operation Football.  Here is ESPN's Heather Dinich on Duke's "Catch 22."  Richmond edged out James Madison in the pre season polls which is a departure from the pre season magazines which all have JMU on top.  TSN picks them #2 in the nation, Lindy's #3 and Phil Steele has them number one.