Duke Basketball: 2019 PF Matthew Hurt shuts down recruitment

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

Two head coaches — neither from Durham — were supposed to visit a key Duke basketball target on Sunday, but the 2019 recruit’s father essentially told them not to bother.

With a recruiting dead period starting at midnight, the father of 2019 power forward Matthew Hurt went ahead and put an end to coaches’ recruitment of his son on Sunday. This news insinuates a decision is already in the books and further suggests the news of Hurt committing to the Duke basketball program is about to become reality.

Kansas coach Bill Self and Kentucky coach John Calipari had intended to drop by the five-star scoring phenom’s home in Rochester, Minn., on Sunday in a last-ditch effort to sway the decision Hurt plans to announce from his John Marshall High School on Friday.

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But Richard Hurt canceled said visits, according to a tweet from KTTC’s Mark Poulose on Sunday evening.

If his son saw his future at either Kansas or Kentucky, it seems unlikely the family would have turned down the coaches’ friendly visits at the last minute.

As it stands, the 247Sports Crystal Ball sees the Blue Devils as the favorites with 64 percent of the experts predicting Hurt — he ranks No. 8 on the 247Sports Composite — will end up in Durham. Mere months ago, that percentage was at zero.

Also, Richard has made it clear in the past Matthew wants to play alongside a seasoned point guard who is known to be a facilitator.

So when Tre Jones, also a Minnesota native, announced a week ago his intention to return to be Duke’s floor general for his sophomore season, it was natural to assume the news helped the Blue Devils’ effort to snag a commitment from Hurt.

ALSO READ: Tre Jones’ return likely reels in 2019 PF Matthew Hurt

Officially, the 6-foot-9, 215-pound sharpshooter with skills to play inside and out — his finesse game brings to mind a mix of former Blue Devils Ryan Kelly, Kyle Singler, Mike Dunleavy, and Danny Ferry — is still considering four schools: Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, and UNC.

But Ball Durham — following the lead of 247Sports lead expert Evan Daniels, who has so far accurately predicted landing spots for 90 of 94 recruits from the 2019 class — has already officially predicted Hurt will become a Blue Devil.

The Blue Devils’ only other 2019 offer still on the table is to four-star shooting guard Cassius Stanley, who only recently picked up the offer and took an official visit to Duke over the weekend. Stanley, who sits at No. 29 on the composite rankings and is arguably the most athletic player in the 2019 class, is set to announce his decision — his final four includes Duke, Kansas, UCLA, and Oregon — on Saturday.

Duke already has commitments from three 2019 recruits: five-star center Vernon Carey Jr. (ranks No. 3), five-star small forward Wendell Moore (ranks No. 22), and four-star combo guard Boogie Ellis (ranks No. 34).

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