Duke basketball: Myles Turner admits he wanted to join Blue Devils

Duke basketball (Photo by Chris Covatta/Getty Images)
Duke basketball (Photo by Chris Covatta/Getty Images) /

Former Texas Longhorn and current Indiana Pacer Myles Turner admitted in a recent interview that he really wanted to commit to the Duke basketball program.

Things couldn’t have gone much better for the Duke basketball team in the 2014-15 season, but things could have been very different.

Everything started with the package deal of Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor committing to the Blue Devils, which led to Grayson Allen and Justise Winslow eventually taking their talents to Durham.

Okafor was ranked as the No. 1 recruit in the ESPN 100, and right on his heels was Myles Turner, who also held an offer from the Blue Devils.

In a recent interview with ESPN’s Jordan Schultz, Turner admitted that he “really wanted to go to Duke,” but his competitive juices kicked in as he realized he couldn’t go to the same school as the player ranked above him.

Turner’s recruitment came down to the Texas Longhorns and the Kansas Jayhawks, and Bill Self had already inked the No. 3 player in the class, Cliff Alexander, so Turner stayed in his home state of Texas and landed in Austin, and he led the Longhorns to a 20-14 season and a trip to the NCAA Tournament.

The eventual Big 12 Rookie of the Year only started seven games for Texas and averaged 10.1 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 2.6 blocks per game en route to being selected as the No. 11 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft by the Indiana Pacers.

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As for Duke, the Blue Devils put the pieces together in the middle of the season and won their fifth National Championship over the Wisconsin Badgers as Jahlil Okafor was the ACC Player of the Year, a consensus All-American, and the No. 3 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft for the Philadelphia 76ers.

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In the end, everything seemingly worked out for all parties involved, but Duke could have been an all-time scary team with Myles Turner in the fold.