Duke receives commitments from several talented football prospects over the weekend to move 2017 recruiting class into Top 25.
The Duke football program will add the top recruiting class in school history this fall, but the players currently committed to the Blue Devils from the class of 2017 have already surpassed the 2016 class and moved Duke into the Top 25 recruiting class rankings.
The Blue Devils received 3 verbal commitments from talented high school recruits over Memorial Day weekend to raise their 2017 recruiting class 11 spots from 36th to 25th in the nation according 247Sports. The first commit over the weekend was a talented 3-star S.C. safety Lummie Young, who is an athletic and versatile defender who will be able to contribute at Duke with his size and speed.
3-star athlete Joshua Blackwell from Buford, Georgia also committed to play for Duke last weekend. At 6-0 and 175 pounds, he “played almost everything” throughout his high school career but will most likely join the Blue Devils as a running back and is willing to play wherever the coaching staff needs him to be.
Duke Football also received a commitment from 3-star wide receiver wide receiver Gavin Holmes on Memorial Day. The Texas WR is somewhat undersized at 5-11 and 178 pounds, but is extremely fast running a 4.43 40-yard dash. He was one of the fastest prospect at a recruit event The Opening Dallas and notes that his speed is “one of his biggest strengths” and he’s continually improving his hands and route-running ability.
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Both of these players were highly recruited by other major football schools, but committed to Duke for the great education as well as the improving football program. Duke was recently ranked the top school for student-athletes in the country based on their athletics and academics. Blackwell was recruited to join Georgia Tech, Michigan State, North Carolina, Penn State, Northwestern, Louisville, Iowa State, Vanderbilt, and West Virginia, but chose to commit to Duke saying, “I made the decision because I felt if football didn’t work out which school would give me the best opportunity to succeed”.
Holmes had offers from the likes of BYU, Utah, and Iowa, but his unofficial visit to Duke is what helped him decide to commit to the Blue Devils. He described the campus as “amazing”, “it looks like a castle”, and “beautiful”, in addition to mentioning how the education will help him in the long run: “I just felt Duke was my fit, and I felt if for some reason football doesn’t work out for me in the long run, Duke will best set me up to succeed in life.”
So far, Duke has 11 recruits committed to the class of 2017, all rated at least 3 stars by 247Sports.com. The 2017 recruiting class is still improving even after losing 4-star linebacker Ellis Brooks, who decommited from the Blue Devils wanting to re-open is recruitment.
Coach Cutcliffe has done a great job building up the football program at Duke and improving the talent of the players. Be sure to stay tuned to Ball Durham for any other Duke Football recruiting news and updates as players announce their college decisions for next year.