Tag Archives: Trey Zeigler

St. Johns v Duke

Decisions loom large for Duke Basketball

Before Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski can map out how he will use his  2012-13 roster,  the dust has to clear on many looming decisions.  To mention that a lot is going on behind the scenes right now within the program is like being Captain Obvious.  The Blue Devils, like other schools, will meet with players individually where they’ll be told what is expected of them next season and how they will be used in what many call exit interviews.

These meetings will at times allow players who are not happy with their projected roles to make a move and or transfer.  While transfers are rare, they are a part of the game and the rumor mill has been full of talk.  Now, I am not saying Duke is destined for transfers, only that one could happen and the public will  not know until GoDuke.com announces them in an official manner.

Already waiting in the wings could be a transfer into the program in Trey Zeigler, a player who is leaving Central Michigan.  Zeigler is visiting several schools including Pitt this week, but the Blue Devils reportedly feel he could help their team.  Zeigler has the ability to guard the 6-5 big guard types and would add some experience but we’ll only know how this one turns out at the end of April or in early May for his decision will not be made until other things are settled.

It’s worth noting that Krzyzewski and Duke have rarely accepted transfers but the ones which have joined the royal blue have been successful.  Roshown McCleod and Dahntay Jones certainly made their impact felt. 

The big key, at the moment, hinges on the decision of rising senior Mason Plumlee.  The question is will he join his eldest brother Miles by signing with an agent to achieve his goal of reaching the NBA or will he come back to Duke to play a year with his youngest brother, Marshall.

Should Mason head to the draft with an agent, it leaves a huge hole in the middle at Duke and that’s when a Blue Devil recruiting target, Tony Parker’s decision becomes oh-so important.  Duke has been recruiting Parker for a good long time and Krzyzewski has stayed steadfast and consistent during the process.  But Parker has been the reason for burgeoning gray hairs in many fans in that his comments are often inconsistent or hard to read.

Oddly, Parker is rumored to be more likely to come if Mason leaves, but it would make sense for him to want Mason around to learn from as a freshman and play beside.  But then there is the possibility that Duke might lose Parker and the middle of the three Plumlee brothers and that would suggest for some tough times in the paint in Durham.

Most Duke fans feel it should be a no brainer for Tony Parker in that Duke has a specific need for a player with his skill set, but if it were only that simple.  Regardless, Parker can all but guarantee himself going to one of the nation’s elite programs and playing right away if he chooses Duke.

As for Plumlee, his decision is a little less clear for perceived results.  He has long been considered an NBA prospect and some feel when you are guaranteed a few million bucks you have to take it, but other factors are at play.  This year’s draft is fast becoming loaded with prospects and can he get a team to guarantee he would be their pick  in the first round if he falls to them?

Should Plumlee return, he will anchor the post at Duke and pardon the pun, but be the big man on campus, likely being considered for many preseason honors and getting a few sleek magazine covers as the Blue Devils’ best player.  On the other hand, who can ever blame a kid for taking the money if it is there for sure?  Personally, I do not feel that his return will hurt his stock for I just cannot see a player with his physical abilities regressing.

Plumlee has until April 10th per the NCAA to announce his decision to enter the draft, but he could actually say he is coming back and still change his mind by April 29th, which is the NBA deadline.  Plumlee has yet to make his decision but it will surely happen soon and Duke fans are sitting on pins and needles in anticipation.

Then the Blue Devils are in contention for the nation’s top player in Shabazz Muhammad, who includes them alongside UCLA and Kentucky.  Duke has an opening for another one and done player but this will not be an easy one to close on and right now most feel UCLA and Kentucky are ahead of the Blue Devils in the process.  My understanding is that Duke has been and will remain in the process and who wouldn’t remain in the chase for a player like Muhammad, who can shift the balance of power instantly?

Another player which would add a different skill set to the roster is Amile Jefferson, a sleek, but slender forward out of Philadelphia.  Jefferson is not the answer in the post for Duke but he is a player which can help in the block per his skill set.  Like Parker and Muhammad, his decision should come around April 11th and that will be a day when the Duke message boards will be non-stop buzzing.

The attraction to Jefferson is the fact he provides different options with his potential and he’s a team player, which is always needed.  Jefferson is also a top-notch student.  N.C. State recruiting types are supremely confident that they are the favorites but we’ll have to wait and see for Duke seems to be in as good a shape as anyone.

There is a lot of talk about the Duke program slipping out there as well, but if a piece or two fall into place or even more, then Duke is a national title contender and no matter what happens, they’ll contend in the ACC.  We live in a time when talking heads can influence society with falsehoods and tainted perceptions and the Blue Devils are a victim of that now more than ever.

In the end, the Blue Devils always seem to push away the critics and force them to start fawning over the program again from the fact they win and do so as consistently as anyone.  Okay, they do so a lot more than most, but reading some of the preseason top 25 projected polls would have you think the sky is falling.

Make no mistake, Duke is a college basketball juggernaut and they won 27 games against a difficult schedule, so to write off them or any of their players would be a mistake.  But it is clear that Duke wants and needs to add to the mix and that is why the pending decisions are critical in many ways.

So strap yourself in for the next few weeks will be a wild ride and if you want more, join BDN Premium where we constantly update what we are hearing provided they are fact based or from consistent sources.

 

High School Hoops 2010 Edition No. 9

Here is another edition of High School Hoops for Blue Devil Nation premium members. This edition takes a look at Duke’s three 2010 committed players: Kyrie Irving, Josh Hairston, and Tyler Thornton; as well as the other players Duke is looking at in the Class of 2010 and beyond. [private]

Kyrie Irving: St. Patrick has advanced to the Championship Game in the Union County Tournament in what could be their last game. Kyrie Irving scored 13 points as the Celtics defeated Union 64-47. St. Patrick will face Plainfield for the championship. Here is some video of the action.

St. Patrick has been banned from participating in the State Tournament due to Coach Kevin Boyle being present during open gym workouts prior to the official start of practice. St. Patrick has filed a civil lawsuit in federal court and a hearing will be held on Monday at 9 am.

Josh Hairston: Montrose Christian ended a losing streak with a 62-56 win over Fork Union. Hairston scored 20 points in the game. Hairston is averaging 17 points per game for the Mustangs and he is currently Second Team in the All-Met Watch.

Tyler Thornton: Thornton is averaging 15 points a game for the 22-6 Eagles. On Friday, February 26, O’Connell defeated Gonzaga 67-55. On Wednesday, February 24, Gonzaga defeated McNamara 62-58. Thornton scored 19 points in the victory.

Trey Zeigler: Zeigler fouled out in regulation but first he scored 27 points to go with 10 rebounds as Mt. Pleasant defeated Bay City Central 73-68 in overtime. The Oilers have now won 13 games in a row.

Marshall Plumlee: Christ School is 35-1 and will play Charlotte Christian for the NCISAA Championship on Saturday night. The Greenies defeated Wesleyan Christian Academy 81-40 in the Quarter-Finals and Forsyth Country Day 67-64 in the Semi-Finals.

Charlotte Christian defeated Ravenscroft to advance to the Championship Game.

Austin Rivers: Winter Park defeated Edgewater 70-59 in the Florida 6A Regional Semi-Finals. Edgewater employed a Box and 1 defense designed to stop Austin Rivers and held him to 11 points but it wasn’t enough to stop the Wildcats from advancing to the Regional Finals. Brett Comer stepped up and scored 23 points. Here is some game video.

In the Quarter-Finals, Rivers scored 41 points in front of a crowd of 1,200 fans including Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski as Winter Park defeated Winter Springs 83-60.

J.P. Tokoto: Menomonee Falls completed the regular season 14-0 in the Greater Metro Conference with an 80-64 defeat of Brookfield Central on Thursday February 25. J.P. Tokoto scored 23 points.

Menomonee Falls defeated Wauwatosa East 67-46 as Tokoto scored a game-high 18 points. The win clinched the Greater Metro Conference title and earned the Indians’ a first round bye in the upcoming state tournament. Menomonee Falls is the #2 seed in Sectional #5.

On Monday, February 22, Tokoto scored 27 points as Menomonee Falls defeated Homestead 74-71.

Finally, here is an article from the Raleigh News & Observer on Kendall Marshall that I’m including in this update in the spirit of the great Chinese Philosopher Sun Tzu whose sage advice was to keep your friends close but your enemies closer. Taking into account all the Larry Drew II rumors about a possible transfer, Marshall could be given the keys to Roy Williams’ broken down jalopy as a freshman.

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High School Hoops 2010 Edition No. 5

Tyler Thornton 3This edition of our running feature on high school basketball action starts off in our nation’s capital with coverage of the D.C. Classic. The Gonzaga Eagles featuring future Blue Devil Tyler Thornton are hosting the tournament. Also participating is perennial California powerhouse Mater Dei the alma mater of current Villanova and ex-Blue Devil Taylor King and Carolina’s Travis and David Wear. [private]

This week’s coverage begins with links to a tournament preview and quarterfinal game results. The preview has information on all eight teams. In the quarterfinals, Tyler Thornton scored 18 points in Gonzaga’s 83 – 69 victory over Jesuit (Dallas) TX. Gonzaga utilized pressure defense to spark their running game and opened the game up in the third quarter.

In the semifinals, Gonzaga faced Calvert Hall (Baltimore) and came away with a 66 – 51 victory. Tyler Thornton scored 16 points and Gonzaga once again used a blistering defense to lead from start to finish.

The Championship Game featured Gonzaga versus Mater Dei. Tyler Thornton scored 18 points and earned MVP honors as Gonzaga used an 11 – 0 run in the fourth quarter to come from behind and win the championship 62 – 59. Thornton turned a critical steal into a coast to coast basket to improve Gonzaga’s lead to 61 – 57.

Josh Hairston scored 10 points and Montrose Christian cruised to a 74 – 25 victory over Liberty. On Saturday, Hairston scored 17 points as Montrose defeated St. Mary’s Ryken 74 – 59.

Quincy Miller scored 25 points in the opening game of the Best of the Midwest Shootout to lead Quality Education Academy to an 87 – 82 victory over Brehm Prep.

Roscoe Smith recorded a double-double of 21 points and 13 rebounds as Oak Hill Academy defeated Carolina Forest 100 – 52. Coach Krzyzewski was in attendance.

Winter Park High School is ranked # 3 in the Orlando Sentinel’s Super 16. The Orlando Sentinel has another Austin Rivers feature article posted. On Saturday, Rivers led all scorers with 18 points as Winter Park defeated Montverde Academy 55 -52 in the Hoops with a Heart Classic. Monteverde was ranked # 1 in the Super 16.

Christ School trounced Asheville HS 70 – 35. Marshall Plumlee scored seven points for the Greenies.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has a Greater Metro Conference preview article posted. This is the conference which includes J.P. Tokoto and Menomonee Falls HS. In Friday night action, Tokoto scored 14 points as Menomonee Falls defeated West Allis Hale 72 – 47.

Trey Zeigler scored 21 points and pulled in eight rebounds, but Mt Pleasant was routed, 65 – 38, by Saginaw Arthur Hill.

Looking at the week ahead, Gonzaga and Montrose Christian will be in Honolulu for the Iolani Classic starting on Thursday. On Friday, Christ School will be participating in the Chick-fil-A Classic and Winter Park will be at the City of Palms. [/private]

Duke Basketball is hitting recruiting trail during the break

Roscoe Smith is a player Duke is targeting - BDN Photo
Roscoe Smith is a player Duke is targeting - BDN Photo

The Duke Men’s Basketball team will have been off for ten days before facing Gardner Webb but that doesn’t mean the staff  hasn’t been hard at work on the recruiting trail.  As I said in an earlier post Duke will attend Roscoe Smith’s game [private] tomorrow evening.  Nothing has changed in that they are looking to get him on campus.  With him playing for Oak Hill, this may or may not happen soon in that their team plays a lot of games so at this time nothing is etched in stone.  Duke remains very much in the race for his services.

Duke also visited Trey Zeigler this past week and they have been keeping tabs on this kid for over a year now.  Think versatility when you talk about this swing player.  Michigan and Michigan State join UCLA and others who have offered this athletic product.

Staff members made it up to Josh Hairston’s game this week and Josh has seemingly made the right choice of schools for his game is visibly improving.

The Devils also took in Tyler Thornton this week as well and you can hear of all these players latest news by following Bob Green’s High School Hoops Report which is becoming a popular premium update for members.

While I fully expect no real action to take place on the Austin Rivers front for a while Duke also made sure they took in one of his games during the break and Rivers is making it no secret that the Blue Devils are firmly in the picture.  While he remains a UF commit, he will be visiting a Duke regular season contest.  That game has yet to be determined.

As for Tashawn Mabry from Rocky Mount High School he was of course at the St. John’s game with his family and they seemed to have had a great time.  Coach K has never seen the kid play and Nate James is the lead assistant to date with Mabry.  Very, very early in the process.

BDN Premium will be on hand for some coming holiday tournament events and we’ll finalize that schedule by next week.  More to come … [/private]

High School Hoops 2010 Edition No. 4

Austin RiversBlue Devil Nation continues its season long coverage of high school basketball with updates on Austin Rivers, Josh Hairston, Tyler Thornton, J.P. Tokoto, Trey Zeigler, and Marshall Plumlee. The High School Hoops articles will be a weekly feature at Blue Devil Nation as they were the past two years; Edition No. 4 is being posted just four days after Edition No. 3 due to a significant volume of activity taking place on the hardwood these past few nights. Blue Devil Nation encourages everyone to check back late Sunday evening for High School Hoops 2010 Edition No. 5. [private]

Austin Rivers earned MVP honors at the Rotary Tip-Off Classic as Winter Park HS won the championship. Rivers scored 20 points, in the championship game, as Winter Park defeated Winter Springs 59 – 32. In the semi-finals, Winter Park defeated Oak Ridge 71 – 57. The Orlando Sentinel has a video recap posted. Rivers scored 28 points and drained seven 3-point shots in a 70 – 43 opening round victory over Lake Brantley.

In his next game, on Tuesday (Dec 8), Rivers scored 21 points in a 75 – 34 victory over Colonial.

Josh Hairston played his debut game at Montrose Christian in the Caron Butler Invitational in Washington D.C. Hairston scored 26 points as Montrose defeated Theodore Roosevelt HS 63 – 47. Theodore Roosevelt was 2 – 0 coming into the game. Montrose Christian and Hairston’s next game is on Friday night.

Tyler Thornton drew an offensive foul with 28 seconds remaining to seal Gonzaga’s 64 – 59 victory over Carroll High. Thornton scored 16 points, including going 6-6 from the charity stripe, and delivered four assists in the game. He is shooting 90.9 percent from the free throw line through three games. Gonzaga and Thornton will be back in action on Thursday evening.

J.P. Tokoto scored 19 points as Menomonee Falls defeated Milwaukee Marquette 56 – 36. Menomonee Falls and Tokoto will be back in action on Friday night.

Trey Zeigler was the leader in scoring and rebounding with 30 and 13 as Mt Pleasant defeated Midland 69 – 46. He also dished out seven assists. In this article, from The Morning Sun, Mt Pleasant Coach Sam Taylor states, “Trey was solid. But it won’t be his best game of the season I can tell you that.” Duke University representatives attended the game to scout Zeigler (I heard through the grapevine it was Nate James, but I cannot confirm who was in attendance). Here is another recap of the action.

Marshall Plumlee grabbed nine rebounds to go along with four points as Christ School opened conference play with an 80 – 67 win over Rabun Gap. Plumlee is averaging 7.6 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks per game through the first nine games of his junior season.

In case any of our faithful readers have not already seen this article with two embedded videos, here is a Kyrie Irving preview from MassLive.com. [/private]

High School Hoops 2010 Edition No. 2

marshal1-300x235This edition is a bit of a preview edition as many high schools tipped off their first games in early December and newspapers across the country kicked off their high school basketball coverage with season previews and articles focused upon key players. [private]

Christ School improved to 5 – 0 on the season with back to back wins at the Christ School Tip-Off Tournament. The Greenies defeated Greenville High School 89 – 60 and Greenfield School 89 – 70. Junior Marshall Plumlee (7’0″ 200) recorded a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds in the first game and added 9 points and 8 rebounds in the championship game.

Sophomore J.P. Tokoto was in foul trouble and held to 10 points as Menomonee Falls fell to Milwaukee King 65 -62 in overtime. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has a game recap posted as well as a detailed preview on Tokoto. By the way, J.P. stands for Jean Pierre.

Tyler Thornton and Gonzaga College High School are looking to win the WCAC Championship this season.  Here is a seven minute video preview of the team.

Austin Rivers is ready to start his junior season at Winter Park High School and the Wildcats are considered one of the favorites to win the Class 6A State Championship. The Orlando Sentinel has an article posted on Rivers as well as a video interview in which Rivers discusses his team’s loss in the state semi-finals last season. Winter Park will be hosting the Rotary Tip-Off tournament Dec. 2-5.

Trey Zeigler is a 6’-5” shooting guard at Mt Pleasant High School in Michigan whose name has been mentioned in connection with Duke. There is some speculation Duke will pursue him if things do not pan out with Roscoe Smith. Zeigler is ranked as the # 35 player in the Class of 2010 and his father is the coach at Central Michigan University. This article from the Morning Sun discusses Zeigler and his focus on team play.

Quality Education Academy lost to Findlay Prep, 69 – 63, at the Tournament of Champions in Peoria, IL.

And Bradley Beal, ranked number seven in the Class of 2011, according to Scout, has given a verbal commitment to play his college ball at the University of Florida. The St Louis Today has a nice article on Beal’s commitment.

Prep sports coverage in online newspapers across the nation is still focused upon football, but basketball coverage will pick up as football seasons come to an end. As the coverage increases, Blue Devil Nation will keep you posted on game results for Duke recruits and recruiting targets with links to articles and box scores from across the country. [/private]