2018 5-star point guard Tre Jones committed to join Duke Basketball over the weekend. What impact will his decision have on the Blue Devils going forward?
Tre Jones, one of the top-ranked point guard prospects in the 2018 recruiting class, announced over the weekend that he will join Duke Basketball. Check out his awesome commitment video below, which features an appearance from former Blue Devil and Tre’s older brother Tyus:
The younger Jones has an established previous relationship with the Duke Mens’ Basketball program. Tyus Jones played under Coach K and helped lead the Blue Devils to the national title in 2015, currently heading into his third season in the NBA with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Tre Jones was also a high school teammate of current freshman Gary Trent, Jr. at Apple Valley.
Tre Jones is a huge pickup for the Duke Basketball program. Here are three ways his commitment will impact the Blue Devils before he joins in 2018:
1. Trevon Duval is gone after this year.
This was already mostly expected whether Jones committed to Duke or not. Duval is one of the top prospects in the incoming freshman class, and projected to be a first-round pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. He has the talent, size, athleticism, and basketball IQ to be a successful point guard in the NBA. Jones’ commitment indicates he will be the replacement for Trevon Duval and definitely will help mitigate the loss of Duval next year.
2. Duke is improving in point guard recruitment.
Duke Basketball has produced many historically great NCAA point guards. However, one of the downsides to the one-and-done trend is that the team has struggled to replace and retain true PGs on the roster. For example, last year Duke was forced to use Grayson Allen, Frank Jackson, Luke Kennard, and even Matt Jones as primary ball-handlers. The addition of Duval and Jordan Goldwire this season as well as Tre Jones next year shows the Blue Devils are committed to recruiting true point guards to run the offense and know it improves their chances of winning.
3. More top prospects are likely to join 2018-19 class.
Now that Duke’s point guard is set for 2018, top recruits at other positions are more likely to consider the Blue Devils as a destination.Similar to how the recruitment of Tyus Jones also brought Jahlil Okafor and Justise Winslow in 2015. Jones played with and competed against many top prep recruits with USA Basketball and AAU tournaments. His decision may have influenced top 2018 recruit Marvin Bagley III, who will announce his decision the day after Jones committed to Duke. Tre Jones is also rumored to be considering a package deal with another top 2018 point guard prospect Darius Garland out of Tennessee.
The commitment of Tre Jones means much more than just adding a talented player to the roster. Hopefully Duke will realize the need to focus on adding true point guard prospects to lead the offense during recruiting and hopefully that can help attract other top prospects in future classes.