The Duke Blue Devils’ football team, struggling defense and all, scored a big win in the recruiting game this weekend, grabbing a commitment from Dominic Zanca-McDonald, a 3-star linebacker from Altamonte Springs, FL. Zanca-McDonald, a 6-foot-1, 240 lb senior from Lake Brantley High School, opted to attend Duke after decommitting from Tennessee, a result of the departure of Derek Dooley.
ESPN has high praise for the linebacker, saying this about Zanca-McDonald:
very productive lining up as an ‘off’ linebacker and a defensive lineman playing with his hand in the dirt; is undersized for the defensive end position, however he has the size and athleticism for the outside linebacker position at the major level of competition… may need some time to perfect coverage skills. However, if a redshirt year isn’t deemed necessary, early playing time is a possibility.
Most recruiting sites hold the same opinion: Zanca-McDonald probably won’t be an immediate contributor to the defense, as there are still parts of his game that will need a year or so to improve, but, regardless, he is a very skilled football player who will be a very valuable contributor throughout his career for head coach David Cutcliffe.
The other thing to take from this signing is that Duke is starting to become a threat in the recruiting game. Just a couple years ago, it appeared that Duke was taking the leftovers of the leftovers in the recruiting game. Now? They just reeled in a very highly-regarded recruit, with other even more highly-touted recruits in their site. Even if you aren’t capable of getting excited about the signing of a linebacker, the fact that Duke is starting to be serious players with so many talented recruits should get you pumped up.
Go. Blue. Devils.