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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Carolina Beach

    Thumbs up Most Important 6 Duke Recruits

    https://www.dukebasketballreport.com...vil-basketball

    https://www.dukebasketballreport.com...man-gene-banks

    I thought this was a bang up job by Jim & JD, on the most important recruits in Duke Basketball history. Kyrie was the only surprise for me, but I understand the reasoning for his being included. Two of the players were before my time. Groat & Heyman, but being a Duke lifer, I certainly understand their significance. Ferry, as I have stated before...I was driving home from Raleigh when the announcement came over the radio & I began screaming. Yes, I was alone. Coach K had beaten Dean out for an outstanding recruit. Dawkins was an obvious choice..

    The best part of the article for me was how JD wrote about what Gene Banks coming to Duke meant. The following line to me was the money line.

    "Gene Banks was the first high-profile, inner-city African American athlete to pick Duke."

    Well done, Gentlemen.

  2. #2
    The section on Banks was rock-solid.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Albemarle, North Carolina
    Hmm I'm surprised that you were surprised about Kyrie. Honestly my first 2 thoughts were Kyrie and Dawkins.
    "The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge" -Stephen Hawking

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by JNort View Post
    Hmm I'm surprised that you were surprised about Kyrie. Honestly my first 2 thoughts were Kyrie and Dawkins.

    I was surprised all 6 spots weren't Patrick Davidson...



    ...seriously though, nice piece. Thanks, Jim!

  5. #5
    Banks and Dawkins were the slingshots. Lots of goodness around them- Gminski, Spanarkel, Dennard, Amaker, Alarie, Henderson, and yes Bilas. From 73 to 77 Duke was last in the ACC in basketball and over .500 in football for the season. Tate broke his wrist and 76-77 was about over. Dennard was a natural replacement for Mark Crow who had a nice career in Italy, married and was a a European scout for the Hawks for years.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Albemarle, North Carolina
    I am kind of surprised at least one of Laettner or Grant didn't make it on the list. I mean Laettner to this day (aside from K himself) is the face of Duke basketball despite him not playing for us in almost 30 years.
    "The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge" -Stephen Hawking

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Albemarle, North Carolina
    Quote Originally Posted by bundabergdevil View Post
    I was surprised all 6 spots weren't Patrick Davidson...



    ...seriously though, nice piece. Thanks, Jim!
    Wait... I thought he was the barometer we used to make these lists? So he is the baseline and the rankings are just who is after him.
    "The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge" -Stephen Hawking

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    Good list. Nice cross-section of history.

    That said, Tre Jones recruited his OLDER brother to Duke, which means he gets credit for the 2015 freshman class (Tyus Jones, Jahlil Okafor, Justise Winslow, Grayson Allen) AND the 2018 freshman class (Tre Jones, Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett, Cam Reddish, Joey Baker). You might have to subtract Grayson Allen and Cam Reddish, both of which committed to Duke before a Jones brother, but that's still 7 players and most of two non-consecutive recruiting classes.

    Seems like a pretty important recruit. I didn't see Danny Ferry do any of that.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Quote Originally Posted by JNort View Post
    I am kind of surprised at least one of Laettner or Grant didn't make it on the list. I mean Laettner to this day (aside from K himself) is the face of Duke basketball despite him not playing for us in almost 30 years.
    I know this may sound crazy but could you also make the argument that Laettner's shadow & notoriety actually made it HARDER for Duke to recruit in the immediate time thereafter?

    Otherwise, I would agree with you about CL.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Glad people are reading this.

    As I tried to make clear at the beginning I wasn't looking for the best players in Duke history but rather players whose recruitments somehow changed the way Duke recruited, players who changed the paradigm. Neither Laettner nor Hill fit that metric, IMO.

    Tyus Jones might be an example of one who did as the architect of a package deal. But we would need more such package deals for that to work.

  11. #11

    Love for Elton

    I certainly canít disagree with any of the six picks in the article. But if I were to add one, I think it would be Elton Brand. His style was a bit different than any former Duke player. When he committed I remember it being a huge deal, and I honestly believe it was more than just his ranking. He was a unique power player unlike any we had ever seen wear a Blue Devil uniform.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia
    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDukie View Post
    I certainly canít disagree with any of the six picks in the article. But if I were to add one, I think it would be Elton Brand. His style was a bit different than any former Duke player. When he committed I remember it being a huge deal, and I honestly believe it was more than just his ranking. He was a unique power player unlike any we had ever seen wear a Blue Devil uniform.
    I really liked Elton as the unstoppable Duke player and as the NBA all-star he became, but was he a more important recruit than Battier, who I believe started that class off and had a bigger overall impact at Duke?
    ďThose two kids, theyíre champions,Ē Krzyzewski said of his senior leaders. ďTheyíre trying to teach the other kids how to become that, and itís a long road to become that.Ē

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by NSDukeFan View Post
    I really liked Elton as the unstoppable Duke player and as the NBA all-star he became, but was he a more important recruit than Battier, who I believe started that class off and had a bigger overall impact at Duke?
    I donít know. I thought about Shane as I typed that out. I was going off my memory, and I thought I remembered Eltonís commitment being a huge deal among many commentators at the time due to his unique talents. But no doubt Shane was a great get as well. Should he become President some day perhaps heíll crack the Top Six.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    North of Durham
    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDukie View Post
    I donít know. I thought about Shane as I typed that out. I was going off my memory, and I thought I remembered Eltonís commitment being a huge deal among many commentators at the time due to his unique talents. But no doubt Shane was a great get as well. Should he become President some day perhaps heíll crack the Top Six.
    Battier, Burgess and Brand were on par with each other (with Avery not far behind). If anything, I would say that Brand was the third most hyped of the group. That class as a whole was a pretty big deal. Four very highly ranked players. And it was the first really big class after a few good but not great classes around the time of the miserable 94-95 season - in 95-96 we had Taymon (who was a McD) and Christensen. In 96-97 we had Nate, Carrawell and Chappell - all very good players but it was a huge step up the following year.

    I think the top six chosen is pretty spot on - thanks for the great writing!

  15. #15
    Thanks for the great article and Thanks also for the input from the board. I personally can't argue with the top 3 mentioned by the author. I would add as 3A Shane Battier.
    Again, Thanks to Jim and all posters

  16. #16
    Good article. I am a little surprised that Nolan Smith isnít on that list. Nolan was a huge get, in terms of how beloved he was by everyone, at every level, how connected he was, and he brought a certain character and personality to Duke that we hadnít had for a while.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Ash View Post
    Good article. I am a little surprised that Nolan Smith isnít on that list. Nolan was a huge get, in terms of how beloved he was by everyone, at every level, how connected he was, and he brought a certain character and personality to Duke that we hadnít had for a while.
    Not even in the top 100. A nice guy, a nice player, a good teammate. A big influence or change, not so much.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Indoor66 View Post
    Not even in the top 100. A nice guy, a nice player, a good teammate. A big influence or change, not so much.
    Whoa, definitely disagree. Nolan has tighter NBA connections than anyone we’ve likely ever had. He was a big part of why Kyrie came (Kyrie later called Nolan his best friend) and a huge part of what made Quinn into Quinn (who, in turn, played a big role in getting the 2015 frosh.). He has encouraged several guys who were close to giving up to stay, to stick it out. During an era that could easily have been a very “uncool” time (thanks in part, and unfairly, to Perky’s three champions) Nolan was the one who, both as a player and later as a member of the staff, made us a “cool” place to play. There was only one player in Duke history who could have pulled off “Draw me in my ice”. The People’s Champ is the most well deserved Duke nickname I’ve ever seen (maybe along with The Landlord.)

    I suppose Jim or someone can maybe chime in if Nolan is closer to Top 6 than he is out of the Top 100.

  19. #19
    I definitely took Jim's article to consider recruit importance at the time of their recruitment. I think a couple of comments may be influenced by how good they became or how important they were, not necessarily how they were perceived when they committed. Maybe I'm wrong though.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    I'd tell ya, but then I'd have to kill ya
    Some clearly misunderstand the criteria. Argue the article on its merits. Otherwise, feel free to submit your own list with your own criteria.

    Good work Jim.

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