Andre Dawkins is already preparing for his junior season despite the fact that his AAU ball just ended. In fact, he pretty much thinks about basketball all the time. [private]Dawkins of course, is Duke’s only current commitment in the class of 2010, but if he has it his way, that will soon change.
Dawkins stated, “I stay in touch with Josh (Hairston) all the time. It would be great for me at Duke with a couple of guys that I know already. Tyler Thornton was the other player he was referring to. He grew up with Tyler and complimented him for continuing to develop his game.
While Dawkins has lost touch with Thornton who moved, he remains tight with Hairston and mentioned Hairston was close to Thornton and that he wanted to get his cell number. “It would be so easy to mesh as a team with these guys both on and off the court,” said Dawkins.<
Dawkins said he felt Josh would make a decision soon and hoped he could get down to Durham before he makes his decision. “He may make one last visit to the schools he likes in order to make an informed decision. Josh knows I want to play with him at Duke and I think they have a good shot, but you never know for sure what might happen.”
Dawkins first memory of Duke was in 2001 when they won the national title with a talented cast of players. “Growing up my Dad was a Duke fan and when I was a kid, I always wanted to be just like him,” said Dawkins. As Dawkins aged, Duke grew on him even more and he eventually chose Duke for his own reasons and not that of his Dads.
My Dad and I have sat down and watched a lot of Duke games,” said Dawkins. He went on to say his Dad was the first person to put the ball in his hands, but that he didn’t pressure him like some little league Dad’s . “He never crossed the line making me do something I didn’t want to do,”
He went on to say that his Dad let him do his own thing and admitted that he thought he knew more about life when he was twelve or thirteen. “He stood back and let me do it my way until I saw I couldn’t do it all on my own,” said Dawkins. At that time, Andre Jr. started listening more to Andre Sr.
Dawkins said that playing for Boo Williams older team had both pros and cons. He felt at times like he should be playing more but still felt he benefited from playing with older guys. Dawkins is the go to guy in high school for Atlantic Shores Christian where he played alongside Steven Pledger who committed to Oklahoma.
The young budding star said he wasn’t as confident at times in that he usually came off the bench as the sixth or seventh man. The lack of repetitions seemed to bother him. Despite that feeling, Dawkins would light it up in many of the games I saw him play in, proving himself to be a terrific outside shooter. “I just wish I could have showcase myself more,” said Dawkins.
When looking ahead he wouldn’t commit to play for Boo Williams again next season at this time. He said that is something that he would discuss with his parents at a future date. He again stated that his sole focus is on the upcoming high school season.
Dawkins will be called upon to play multiple positions on his team in the Fall. “Most of the time I’m on the wing, but there are times when I need to play down low against certain teams, said Dawkins. This has added to his versatility, but he is projected as a wing guard or small wing forward at the collegiate level.
As for more visits to Duke in the coming season, he stated that he wanted to talk to Coach K in order to set some games up. He did mention that come rain or snow, nothing would keep him away from the UNC game and that he planned on watching future teammates’ exact revenge over last seasons defeat in Cameron.
I then asked about his playing with teammates who have committed to UNC, namely Kendall Marshall. “He can be on the computer and if he has to type in Duke, he’ll tell me to type it in because he doesn’t want to do it,” said a laughing Dawkins. He said the two were already playing around with each other but when it came time, it would be all business.
Dawkins love watching Coach K in the Olympics and developed a worry. That worry being that Coach K was getting use to coaching the best pros around and that he may take off to the NBA. “It was nice to have the opportunity to see how great of a coach he is,” said Dawkins. He continued, “Hopefully he doesn’t get too wooed by the NBA.
He was also in awe of Coach K’s ability to get the players to play good defense, again stating teams would likely come at him with big money. In short, Andre really wants his chance to play for Krzyzewski.
Andre went on to say that Wojo and Coach K each called him while in Beijing, China. He also mentioned that he received some e-mails. K’s call was before the Gold Medal game and it was obvious that Dawkins appreciated that. “It still hasn’t quite sunk in yet that I will be playing my basketball for Duke and Coach K,” said Dawkins who then said it makes him want to get better so that he doesn’t disappoint.[/private]