Duke Basketball: Coach K set for crucial visit with 2020 C Mark Williams

Duke basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Duke basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

A 2020 big man and his family will host the Duke basketball coaches for an in-home visit this week, a big step in the staff ensuring the 2020-21 roster isn’t without a single quality big.

Unless either Vernon Carey Jr. or Matthew Hurt becomes the first Duke basketball player since Kyle Singler to rank in the top 10 out of high school and end up playing more than one college season, Mike Krzyzewski has no scholarship big men lined up to be on the 2020-21 roster.

What the Blue Devil head coach does now have lined up, though, is another step to see to it his squad the season after next includes at least one center capable of contributing.

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As reported via a tweet from Stock Risers’ Jake Weingarten, Krzyzewski and his staff will conduct an in-home visit on Thursday with Mark Williams and his family, less than a week after extending an offer to the four-star center from Norfolk, Va.

Williams, who ranks No. 46 overall and No. 6 among centers on the 247Sports Composite, is the younger brother of Elizabeth Williams, a four-time All-American (2012-2015) for the women’s basketball program at Duke.

The 7-foot, 225-pound male Williams holds 22 offers, but with education a primary factor for the Williamses, Duke and Stanford are likely in a head-to-head battle for his services. At the moment, only one expert at the 247Sports Crystal Ball has entered a pick (Stanford) for Williams.

Although Williams has not taken or scheduled any official visits to date, he took an unofficial visit to Duke as a sophomore and is familiar with the campus after making numerous trips as a child with his family to watch his sister play.

He has not announced a timetable for deciding on a college.

Williams is certainly not the most explosive athlete or beefiest bruiser, but his 7-foot-2 wingspan, positive attitude, vocal leadership on the court, and refined overall skill set make him the type of presence the Duke program could benefit from for years to come (based on his valuing education and his frame likely needing several more years to fill out, his chances of being a one-and-done college player are slim to none).

While one could view Williams as a backup plan in case another school lands Walker Kessler, a fellow 7-footer who ranks No. 17 on the composite, considering the lack of size on tap for the 2020-21 season, it seems more likely that Coach K hopes to include both — and potentially even one or two more big men — in his 2020 recruiting class.

The staff extended an offer to Kessler at the end of December and visited his family in their home back in early April — he used an official visit on Duke at the beginning of February.

ALSO READ: Staff uses bold comparison to lure Walker Kessler

The staff has also expressed interest — though hasn’t yet extended an offer — to yet another 7-footer, Xavier Foster, who ranks No. 28.

No 2020 recruits have yet to commit to Duke.

Other than Williams and Kessler, 2020 recruits currently holding Duke offers are five-star small forward Jalen Johnson, who ranks No. 3; five-star small forward Scottie Barnes, who ranks No. 4; five-star shooting guard B.J. Boston, who ranks No. 9; and five-star point guard Jeremy Roach, who ranks No. 16.

ALSO READ: Jeremy Roach represents the best bet to replace Tre Jones

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