Tag Archives: Duke Recruiting

Booker HS WR Ricky Jones plans to visit Duke this summer

Speedy Florida WR Ricky Jones Jr. says “Duke is very strong” in his recruitment

Booker HS WR Ricky Jones plans to visit Duke this summer

The Duke coaching staff is looking to add dynamic athletes to the class of 2012 and have been scouting the country in search of potential impact players for the program. In recent years, the Blue Devils have had success with pulling players from the state of Florida, headlined by the dynamic receiving duo of Donovan Varner and Conner Vernon. In the class of 2012, Duke is already off to a great start in Florida, securing commitments from TE Erich Schneider and SAF Dwayne Norman. Ricky Jones is a 5’10” 175 pound prospect from Sarasota, Florida. The speedy slot receiver is already up to over half a dozen scholarship offers, including the Blue Devils. Jones is developing a strong relationship with the Duke coaching staff and plans to visit Durham this summer with his teammate, DB Ezra Robinson. Highlights of Jones’ 12-touchdown junior year can be viewed here.

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BDN: Can you start off by describing your strengths as a player?

Some of my strengths I believe, my after the ball ability. After I catch the ball, I feel like I’m a playmaker. I have a great burst off the line of scrimmage. I’m a slot player, a slot receiver, so I’ve got great quickness and great speed.

BDN: What are some of the things you have been working on as you prepare for your senior year?

I’ve really been working on my lateral speed and stuff like that, and working on my route running.

BDN: What are your goals for your senior year?

I believe, senior year, I just want to get better and better, beat all the rest of my years and go out strong.

BDN: What are the most important things you’re looking for in a college?

First I’m looking at the offenses and what type of offense they have. And another real strong point is academic-wise, where will it take me if football doesn’t work out? Looking at the graduation rate and stuff like that.

BDN: Is there an academic field you’re interested in studying?

Not right now, I’m still seeing what I want to do after, but I just want to see like what my major would be there if I do have it.

BDN: Which schools have you had the most contact with so far?

Wake Forest is pretty strong, Duke is very strong also.

BDN: Have you had a chance to take any visits yet?

I have plans to visit, I might be going up to North Carolina to visit with Ezra Robinson, he has family up that way so we plan on visiting a lot of schools up that way.

BDN: Is North Carolina an area you’re interested in going to school, or would you prefer to be closer to home?

I have no problem with being away from home, but not too far, I don’t want to go really, really far. I have no problem with moving away from Florida, though.

BDN: Have any schools stood out to you at this point in the process, either from your visits or your relationships with the coaches?

Not really, I’m still evaluating every school and see what would be the best fit for me right now, I’ve still got almost a whole year to go.

BDN: Do you have an idea for how you would like to narrow things down and make your decision?

I believe I might be breaking it down after the summer, dropping the list from like 25 to like 15 probably, dropping down closer and closer, but I don’t have a date yet.

BDN: Thanks a lot, Ricky, and best of luck to you.

Thanks.

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DT Korren Kirven has a busy summer planned

ESPNU150 DT Korren Kirven is staying in contact with Duke

DT Korren Kirven has a busy summer planned

Under new defensive line coach Rick Petri, the Blue Devils have targeted some of the top defensive line prospects in the class of 2012. One of the first linemen to visit Durham and pick up a verbal scholarship offer was Korren Kirven, a 6’5” 275 pound prospect from Lynchburg, Virginia. The recently-named ESPNU150 defensive tackle is now up to over 20 scholarship offers from many of the top programs in the ACC and SEC. Kirven visited Durham again for the Nike camp on May 23 and came away with All-Camp Team honors. When BDN last spoke with Kirven, he had come away impressed with the Duke program: “Duke – their whole academic thing down there is really good…it was a good visit.” With his recruitment picking up, Korren checked back in with BDN to update his summer plans.

BDN: How has your spring been going?

We had 7-on-7 stuff, that’s almost over. We have one more event, that’s at  UVA and we’re going to be traveling up there to play. That’s it with spring ball, but we’re going to be starting weight lifting, our weight-lifting program on Monday.

BDN: How has your 7-on-7 season gone?

We’ve been doing good, I think we only lost one time. Other than that, I think we’ve been pretty good.

BDN: What schools have you visited this spring?

I’m going down to UNC soon. The schools that I’ve visited, though, have been Virginia Tech, Duke, Tennessee, and Virginia. I think that’s about it, but I’m going to be doing a lot of traveling this summer.

BDN: Which coaches have had a chance to stop by to see you this spring?

Virginia Tech’s coaches, UVA, Notre Dame, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Marshall, Colorado, Texas Tech, UCF, it’s quite a few of them. There’s a lot of them, I can’t really name all of them right now, but it was quite a few of them.

BDN: Which schools have you been in contact with the most so far?

My Virginia schools I always stay in contact with, but other than that, Alabama, Tennessee, Duke, Rutgers, Stanford, Notre Dame, Colorado, and Florida have been the schools that I’ve stayed in touch with, and Maryland.

BDN: You mentioned taking a lot of visits this summer, which schools are you definitely planning to visit?

Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Stanford, Tennessee, Colorado, and possibly Oregon.

BDN: Obviously you’ve got a lot of great choices in front of you, how you do plan to start to narrow things down at this point?

Yeah, I’m going to take all my visits and slowly narrow down my list and go from there. I’ll take all my officials and then I guess I’ll have a school.

BDN: That sounds like a long way off right now, doesn’t it?

[Laughs] Yeah, yeah.

BDN: Which schools do you feel like you have the best relationship with right now?

Always the Virginia schools stand out, but like I said, Florida and Alabama, and Tennessee.

BDN: Thanks a lot, Korren, and best of luck to you.

Okay, thank you man.


 

Pinecrest OL Bryce Kennedy is looking for a school with great academics

Pinecrest OL Bryce Kennedy likes Duke

Pinecrest OL Bryce Kennedy is looking for a school with good academics

Many consider the strength of Duke’s last recruiting class to be the offensive line, led by Cody Robinson, Marcus Aprahamian, Lucas Patrick, and Matt Skura. Coach Luke and the staff would love to add a few more impact linemen to the roster in the class of 2012, but it’s been a slow start at the position so far. With camp season in full swing, recruiting has picked up quickly, and Duke has extended offers to a number of top offensive linemen across the country, and some close to Durham. One of the top linemen in the state of North Carolina resides in Southern Pines, and 6’3″ 285 pound prospect Bryce Kennedy added a Blue Devil offer to his list a few weeks ago.

BDN: Can you start off by describing your strengths for fans who haven’t had a chance to see you play?

My biggest thing is I’m fast for my size, I get off the ball pretty quick, so I think that’s my biggest strength.

BDN: What are some of the things you have been working on this spring?

Trying to get stronger, I’m in the weight room a lot, doing a lot of weights. I’ve started the speed process, I’m doing less weights, a lot of reps, trying to get faster for the season.

BDN: What are your goals for your senior year?

My senior year I plan on giving my all, making plays, helping my team out, and I hope my team takes after me and gives it their all.

BDN: As you look at your college decision, what are the most important factors you are looking for in a school?

Main thing I’m looking for is if they have a good program in academics. I’m big on academics and my mom is too, so I know she’s going to want me to go to a school that’s big on academics.

BDN: Is there a particular academic program you’re interested in studying?

Not right now, I’m still looking around, but I mean schools like Duke and [North] Carolina, top academic schools.

BDN: What schools have you been in contact with the most?

South Carolina, East Carolina, NC State has been by. Clemson has been by, North Carolina by, and Duke has been by. I think that’s been about it. Wake Forest has been by. The schools I’ve been to already has been South Carolina, Duke, and North Carolina and I’m going to NC State this weekend or next weekend. Oh yeah, Stanford came by, too.

BDN: That was going to be my next question. How did your visits go to South Carolina, Duke, and North Carolina?

They’re all great, they’re all great schools. From what I saw, they’re all just great schools and would be great places to go to school.

BDN: Do you have any visits planned for this summer other than NC State?

I plan on going to Stanford this summer and Wake Forest and probably East Carolina. I’ll probably go back to South Carolina, Duke, and UNC too.

BDN: Have any schools stood out to you at this point in the process, either from your visits or your relationships with the coaches?

They’re all new to me, so they’ve all really, really, really surprised me. South Carolina, I know the coaches a lot, I know the OLine coach since I’ve been a freshman he’s been there and what type of guy he is. I like Duke and [North] Carolina a lot because of the campuses and I know how the academics are. I’ve talked to the coaches a lot and they seem like good coaches to have, like they’d be there for me and everything.

BDN: Do you have an idea for how you would like to narrow things down and make your decision?

Yeah, I’m going to talk to my parents about and see what schools are at the top.

BDN: Is there anything else you think is important for college football fans to know about you?

The only thing that’s really important to me is that I’m going to give my all on every play, I’m going to be there to support my team, and I’m a player that they can count on.

BDN: Thanks a lot, Bryce, and best of luck to you.

Alright, thank you sir.

 

Duke would love for Keilin Rayner to join Deion Williams at LB in the class of 2012

Recruiting heating up for NC LB Keilin Rayner

Duke would love for Keilin Rayner to join Deion Williams at LB in the class of 2012

The Duke coaching staff has been scouting the country in search of players to help improve the Blue Devil defense, but they have been focused on an in-state linebacker for several months now. Keilin Rayner is a 6’3” 220 pound linebacker prospect from Leland, North Carolina. As a junior, Keilin played primarily defensive end, helping North Brunswick HS to the state playoffs and a 5-7 overall record. The Duke coaching staff would love to add Rayner to the class of 2012 at linebacker, where he could make an early impact for the Blue Devils. Highlights from Keilin’s junior year can be viewed here. Duke and ECU were the first two programs to offer a scholarship to Rayner, whose recruitment has taken off this spring. When BDN last spoke with Keilin, Duke was a program that had impressed him, but with over half a dozen offers now, where do the Blue Devils stand?

 

BDN: What coaches have stopped by to see you this spring?

Pretty much all of them, Clemson, Maryland, Virginia Tech, [NC] State, [North] Carolina, ECU, and Wake Forest came by.

BDN: When we last spoke Duke and ECU were the first two schools to offer you; what other schools have offered you this spring?

[North] Carolina, [NC] State, Duke, ECU, Wake, Clemson, South Carolina, Florida International, I think that’s about it.

BDN: Which schools have you visited so far?

I didn’t get to visit any this spring, but previously I visited ECU, [NC] State, and Duke. I’m hoping to visit [North] Carolina maybe next week.

BDN: Do you have plans for any other visits this summer?

Maybe some camps, but other than that I don’t know yet.

BDN: With recruiting picking up for you, what are your thoughts for when you want to narrow things down and make your decision?

I would like to visit all the schools that have offered me and some other schools that haven’t, probably make my decision later after I’ve visited.

BDN: Which schools or coaches do you feel like you have the best relationship with?

Coach Cutcliffe and Coach Luke from Duke.

BDN: What are your plans for the summer?

Just work out, pretty much.

BDN: That’s great, I know you mentioned you would be playing more linebacker this fall, what kind of things have you been working on?

A lot of coaches said to work on my hip flexibility and getting off the ball, working on that.

BDN: Thanks a lot, Keilin, and best of luck.

Thank you.


 

BDN Recruiting Focus – Anthony Bennett

BDNP

It seems over the last two years there has been an overwhelming amount of Canadian talent pouring into the hoops world. No longer do Canadians have to only point to Steve Nash, there are now talents such as Cory Joseph, Tristan Thompson, and Myck Kabongo representing our friends north of the border. Findlay Prep, a powerhouse basketball program located in Henderson, Nevada, has accumulated much of this Canadian wealth recently. All three of those players have matriculated to college or are now waiting for their dreams to come true – hearing their name be called by NBA commissioner David Stern. The next in line to take over at Findlay prep and represent Canadian players is none other than 6’7 wing forward Anthony Bennett. Built like a freight train, Bennett hails from Brampton, Ontario, Canada, a city roughly 45 minutes west of Toronto, Ontario’s capital city. A [private] city more notably known for its hockey players and hilarious comedian Russell Peters, Brampton is now starting to produce some big time basketball talent starting with Tristan Thompson and now Bennett. Bennett has been extremely impressive these past two weekends making scouts certainly rethink where they originally had him slated. BDN got a chance to briefly catch up with the bruising wing forward last weekend at the Nike EYBL in Los Angeles.

BDN: Just to make sure the program has this right, you are from Brampton correct?

AB: Yes sir, I am.

Well that is very interesting as I am originally from Hamilton, not too far from you.

Oh for real? (smiles) Not too far from Brampton.

I spoke to Myck Kabongo about this awhile ago, but I’d like to get your take. What’s it like being the Canadian kid moving to the U.S to play?

I mean, they think Canadian players only play hockey and stuff, so they really don’t take us seriously at first. But, us as Canadians, we have to show them what’s really good. So we just go out and play strong all the time.

What is the biggest difference from playing in Canada to playing out here?

Players in Canada, they are a lot smaller. They aren’t really that big in general.

Oh you mean like the 6’2 center? We had one of those on my high school team.

(laughs) Yea yea that’s exactly it. But out here in America, it’s really great competition. People are bigger and stronger. People are just as good as you so you really have to work on your game to improve.

Tell some of our fans a little bit about your game?

I’m very aggressive, I get rebounds, I try to get my teammates open. I can go down low and play and I can shoot from the outside. In the high post, I get it and turn around and face up and do my thing out there.

 

Do you have a preference on where you play?

Not really, but I am trying to work my game outside, but right now I feel like my game is a high post, short corner type of game.

What are some of the schools that are interested in you right now?

Well there are a lot of them really. I can’t even list them off the top of my head, but I’ll try (laughs).

Just a few will do.

UConn, Arizona, Washington, Oregon, Florida, Florida St., UNLV, Xavier, oh man..

That’s an impressive list. Anyone else specifically from the ACC?

I had heard from Duke at about mid-season, but I haven’t really talked to them that much.

If they were to pursue you, would you be open?

Yea I would.

You’ve got a teammate on CIA Bounce that is absolutely blowing up. Tell me about Andrew Wiggins a little bit.

He’s very young right now. He’s very athletic though. He can shoot, he can drive, he’s just a really great kid, and in the future he’s going to be a great player.

Being at Findlay right now, what are the coaches working on most with you?

They are trying to get me out on the wing more right now. Every time we do ball handling and shooting drills and stuff, they have me with them.

Do you model your game after any players specifically?

Oh naw man. I just do me!

When it comes time to make your decision eventually, who will you look to for guidance?

I would have to say my mom and my AAU coach Mike George.

Do you have any time frame for your decision?

No not yet, but I might go later on in the year.

Thanks for your time.

No problem man, thanks.  [/private]

BDN Pitt Jamfest Coverage

BDN is on the recruiting trail again this weekend where our well informed recruiting analyst Andrew Slater is reporting from the Pitt JamFest for Blue Devil Nation Premium subscribers. For complete updates specifically tailored to cover Duke prospects and targets,  join now and get the news as it happens on our members only message board.  Members can also look forward to several more prospect interviews from Boo Williams and this weekends event.  If you want to stay on top of the latest on the basketball and football recruiting trails, join BDN Premium, our subscription service today.