After a season that ended with a bowl game, Duke continued its positive momentum and signed 20 new players in the class of 2013. Credit: CHUCK LIDDY
Durham—All the faxes are in, and Duke football can now officially welcome its class of 2013. In total, the Blue Devils signed 20 prospects, four of whom enrolled in January and are already on campus. The full list is below.
The theme of the class can be summed up in one word: Playmaker.
"It’s pretty cool that a lot of them played and started on both sides on their high school teams," head coach David Cutcliffe said. They were the leading players and playmakers on both sides of the football. I personally paid a lot of attention to that as we started offering people in this class. Guys that don’t make plays in high school aren’t going to make plays in college.
"If they run great times in a combine and they jump well and they impress people standing there watching them doing drills, and they won’t make plays in the ball game, then I’m not very interested in them."
Currently, Rivals ranks Duke as the No. 11 class in the 14-team ACC (welcome, Pittsburgh and Syracuse) and 67th overall. The star rankings for each prospect also come from Rivals. Earlier today, I asked Cutcliffe how much he pays attention to the star system during the recruiting process.
"I really couldn't tell you anything about it," he said. "The only thing that bothers me about it is how important it becomes to the players. I hate to see somebody disrespected. I trust my own eyes. I trust what we see in camp, and I trust what I feel about people in meetings we have in the office."
When the Blue Devils evaluate a prospect, the entire staff gathers together, from Cutcliffe down to the graduate assistants.
"We've made a living recruiting what we think are four- and five-star players that somebody else may think are two- or three-star players," Cutcliffe said. "So far, we've been right most of the time."
In this class, there are, according to Cutcliffe, four linemen, a linebacker (Dominic McDonald), and the rest are "speed-skill" athletes. On Duke's release, only the two quarterbacks (Parker Boehme and Quay Chambers) have specific position. The four linemen have an "L" listed for their position. Every one else has a "B" for back.
***Parker Boehme, QB, 6-2, 220, Jacksonville Beach, Fla.
An early enrollee, Boehme is listed as the No. 23 dual-threat quarterback in the country by 247Sports. As a junior, he accounted for 3,202 total yards (951 rushing and 2,251 passing) and was an honorable mention of the AP all-state team. His senior season was cut short with a toe injury, but Cutcliffe expects him to participate in spring practice.
***Dominic McDonald, LB, 6-2, 240, Longwood, Fla.
An early enrollee, McDonald flipped his commitment from Tennessee to Duke shortly before the Belk Bowl. Listed as the No. 59 outside linebacker in the country by ESPN, McDonald totaled 175 tackles, 43 tackles for loss and 19 sacks in three years. A, AP first-team all-state selection.
***Evrett Edwards, DB, 5-11, 175, Woodbridge, Va.
An early enrollee and one of the jewels of the class that stayed firm to his commitment despite offers from Clemson, Purdue and West Virginia. Ranked as the No. 43 cornerback in the nation by ESPN and finished his prep career with 107 tackles, 21 pass break-ups and 10 interceptions. Also played wide receiver.
**Quay Mann, DB, 5-9, 185, Rocky Mount, N.C.
Already enrolled. Ranked the No. 89 cornerback in the country by ESPN. As a team captain his senior year, posted 30 tackles and one interception while also totaling 900 all-purpose yards and 11 touchdowns. A Shrine Bowl participant.
SIGNED ON WEDNESDAY
***Joseph Ajeigbe, RB, 5-9, 215, Riverside, Calf.
Ranked as the No. 61 running back in the nation by ESPN. Rushed for 4,555 yards and 48 touchdowns in his final three years at Norco, which made the state playoffs each year.
***Terrence Alls, WR, 6-1, 180, Miami Gardens, Fla.
One of the jewels of the class, the AP first-team all-state selection finished his prep career at Dade Christian with 108 receptions for 1,856 yards, an average of 17.2 yards per catch. He caught seven passes for 90 yards and a touchdown in the state title game his senior year. Also finished eighth in the 100 meter dash in the 2012 Florida Class A state championship track meet.
***Johnell Barnes, WR, 6-0, 175, Lehigh Acres, Fla.
The two-way player is listed as the No. 38 cornerback in the country by Scout and No. 79 wide receiver in the nation by Rivals. He caught 62 passes for 1,263 yards and 18 touchdowns in his final two years and helped Dunbar clinch three state playoff appearances.
***Gabe Brandner, OL, 6-6, 255, Blythewood, S.C.
The two-way player is ranked the 19th overall prospect in South Carolina by Rivals. Graded out at 92 percent on offense his senior year while also recorded 68 tackles and 12 tackles for loss on defense. He also earned all-state honors in baseball as a pitcher and first baseman.
***Austin Davis, OL, 6-4, 290, Mansfield, Tex.
Listed as the No. 6 center in the nation by ESPN. Helped Mansfield to a three-year record of 26-10 with three state playoff appearances and was a team captain his senior year.
***Bryon Fields, DB, 5-11, 185, Charlotte, N.C.
A two-time All-Mecklenburg pick by the Charlotte Observer, Fields finished his career with 208 tackles, 14 interceptions and 10 punt returns for touchdowns for Providence Day. Was the MVP of the 2011 NCISAA Division I state championship team. Also played wide receiver, catching 96 passes for 1,483 yards and 10 touchdowns in his final two years.
***Chris Holmes, ATH, 6-2, 200, Fredericksburg, Va.
One of the jewels of the class and a former N.C. State commit who flipped in January. The No. 77 safety in the nation, according to Scout, recorded 100 tackles and four interceptions over three years and also caught 42 passes for 685 yards in his junior and senior years.
***Ryan Smith, WR, 5-7, 165, Las Vegas, Nev.
Ranked as the No. 1 wide receiver and No. 3 overall prospect in Nevada by Rivals. The four-time state champion finished his career as Nevada's all-time leader in receiving yards (3,208 yards) and also recorded 132 receptions and 51 touchdowns.
**Breon Borders, DB, 6-0, 175, Statesville, N.C.
Recorded 139 tackles, 20 pass breakups and 12 interceptions in his final two years. Caused three fumbles and returned two for touchdowns his senior year. Helped Statesville to a three-year record of 28-12 with three state playoff berths
**Phillip Carter, DB, 6-1, 200, El Dorado Hills, Calif.
The No. 72 safety in the nation, according to ESPN, played both ways. Set the California high school single-game record with 317 receiving yards on 10 receptions (and had five touchdowns of 20, 37, 60, 66, and 78 yards) Aug. 24, 2012. Was a team captain his senior year and recorded 91 tackles, 10 pass break-ups, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries on defense and 40 passes for 662 yards and 12 touchdowns on offense.
**Quay Chambers, QB, 6-3, 215, Monroe, N.C.
Listed as a top-40 dual-threat quarterback by both 247Sports and ESPN. Completed 93-of-155 (60 percent) passes for 1,520 yards and 19 touchdowns while rushing for 1,105 yards and 16 touchdowns on 147 carries his senior year.
**T.J. Douglas, ATH, 6-1, 190, Fort Myers, Fla.
An AP second-team all-state selection in 2012, he amassed 1,685 yards of total offense (1,053 rushing and 632 passing) and 22 touchdowns. In his junior year, he compiled 1,888 yards of total offense and 18 touchdowns.
**Jake Kite, DB, 6-0, 185, Roanoke, Va.
Ranked as the No. 39 safety in the nation by ESPN, he was three-way player and a two-time Timesland defensive player of the year pick by the Roanoke Times. Totaled 120 total tackles, six caused fumbles and four fumble recoveries on offense his senior year and also added 33 receptions for 392 yards and six touchdowns. Also returned 14 kickoffs for 304 yards and 19 punts for 215 yards.
**Sterling Korona, OL, 6-7, 260, San Antonio, Tex.
Listed as the No. 68 offensive tackle in the country by both ESPN and 247Sports. Appeared in two state playoffs with Ronald Reagan High.
**Mike Ramsay, DE, 6-2, 280, Smyrna, Ga.
a Class A first-team all-state selection by the Atlanta Journal Constitution, he served as a team captain and posted 40 tackles and four sacks as his team went 10-0 in the regular season. Also placed fourth in the shot put in the 2012 state championship track and field meet.
**Deondre Singleton, ATH, 5-11, 175, Dacula, Ga.
Ranked as a top-100 defensive player by both ESPN and 247Sports. Posted 89 tackles, 26 pass break-ups and nine interceptions in his final two years. The two-way player also caught 21 passes for 329 yards and three touchdowns his senior year.