Posted November 15, 2013

Jahlil Okafor, Tyus Jones commit to Duke

Duke, Kansas, Recruiting
Tyus Jones

Tyus Jones (above) will join his friend Jahlil Okafor at Duke next season. (Chris Williams/Icon SMI)

Two of the nation’s top prospects, Jahlil Okafor and Tyus Jones, committed to Duke simultaneously on national television Friday afternoon. Okafor, the No. 1 player in the nation according to Rivals, and Jones, the No. 5 prospect, have hinted for months that they would attend the same school.

Okafor, a shot blocking center, figures to be a prominent presence in the paint for coach Mike Krzyzewski. Jones, a dynamic point guard, will add to an already deep backcourt. In a blog for USA Today, Jones wrote about his desire to play for the Blue Devils: “With Duke it’s the opportunity to play for Coach K and the style that they play there. I love the way they use their guards, and I feel like I can make an impact right away. Plus they have a great fan base.”

Cliff Alexander, a power forward and the No. 4 player in the class, committed to Kansas. During his announcement, the Chicago native initially picked up a University of Illinois before putting it back in favor of a Kansas Jayhawks cap.

Arizona coach Sean Miller also added to his recruiting resume this year by signing the nation’s No. 3 player, small forward Stanley Johnson. Forgoing the standard hat announcement, Johnson held Arizona Wildcats shoes to the camera to show where he had committed. Johnson, a friend and former Oakland Soldiers AAU teammate of star freshman Aaron Gordon, was asked on air if he could convince Gordon to stay for his sophomore year. Johnson responded: “Nah, he’s long gone.”

Three players in Rivals’ top 10 — Myles Turner (6), Rashad Vaughn (7) and Justise Winslow (9) — remain unsigned.

15 comments
joeymatta
joeymatta

Used to follow college hoops with a lot of interest but the one and done business makes it silly. Somehow a kid coming in for one year doesnt fit the definition of student - athelete in my mind. The more appropriate description is mercenary and that doesnt inspire to much in the way of school spirit.

OldBlue71
OldBlue71

This might force Ole Roy to hire somebody who can coach, not just recruit.

WHO*IS*ESPN
WHO*IS*ESPN

During his announcement, the Chicago native initially picked up a University of Illinois before putting it back in favor of a Kansas Jayhawks cap.

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Man, that's never been done before. Sad, the media turns these kids into "all about me" in high school.  No wonder they are already arrogant self serving pricks before college and expect all.....and cry when they don' t get their way

TommyTG
TommyTG

I live 30 miles from Duke and since Duke has joined the one and done Schools of higher education don't care who they recruit. Wasn't always that way at Duke. 

KidHorn
KidHorn

So, remind me again why these players have to go to college for a year before they can be drafted? Does one year of a communications curriculum really prepare them for the future?

netdoggydog
netdoggydog

Cliff Alexander:  during his announcement, the Chicago native initially picked up a University of Illinois cap, blew rasberries, stuck out his tongue, and then mooned all fans of Illinois, before putting it back in favor of a Kansas Jayhawks cap.

In related news, rampaging Illini basketball fans burned down the entire block where Cliff Alexander's family resides.

I don't wish harm on any of these athletes - they're just self-absorbed kids.  They clearly get atrocious guidance from adults that allow them to make such self-agrandizing announcements.  Somebody should counsel that kid that an assistant coach at multiple different universities who were in charge of recruiting him the last year probably just got fired ten minutes after the kid's announcement.

benbona75
benbona75

Wonder if they are scholastic marvels like everyone else at Duke.

playemball
playemball

Great recruiting by K..home he's they're not one and dones though..

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

And the rich get richer.

Not original, but apt. 

BigBubba
BigBubba

@WHO*IS*ESPN couldn't agree more.  Same thing with the HOUR LONG special that DT recruit Hand got when he ultimately chose Bama over Michigan.  I mean, he's a high recruit, fine.  But what has he done to deserve the accolades?  He has done NOTHING so far to earn playing time or fame.  I would guess that he will work hard and earn it, and hopefully succeed, but this whole charade is ridiculous.


And with basketball, all of these high stars are one and done, it's almost like universities renting these guys.  Calipari ball, I guess. 

JamesJoyce
JamesJoyce

@TommyTG Sure - we should totally force every BBall player to spend four years at school - I mean that is the expectation for all of the other students there - Right??

OldBlue71
OldBlue71

@KidHorn Might help them understand why they have to pay college grads big bucks to manage their affairs when they're rich.

MattBugaj
MattBugaj

@JamesJoyce @TommyTG The original Syracuse class of 2014 had four players. Two left after their sophomore years, one is the pre-season ACC POY, and one is a very capable part-time center. Carmelo Anthony only stayed one year, but then he built a state-of-the-art training facility. MCW was held back a year on the bench behind guys who were more ready. Unlike one-and-done culture, it's still family up here, and there's a hard seat with your name on it at the Carrier Dome if you want it.