The regular signing period for Division I college basketball started Wednesday, and soon some of the top unsigned prospects make their college choices soon.
Here are the players to watch for Duke, UNC and N.C. State fans:
Kevin Knox (Duke and UNC)
Kevin Knox, a 6-9, 203-pound forward, is rated the No. 8 overall prospect in the country, according to 247sports.com’s composite rankings.
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He can shoot, rebound, drive and dunk and is capable of taking over a game.
Knox put up big numbers for Tampa Catholic in Florida during his senior season. He scored 40 points and grabbed 20 rebounds in the Florida state playoff semifinal game with UNC coach Roy Williams in attendance.
Knox is interested in both Duke and UNC, but Florida State, Kentucky and Missouri are also on that list. Missouri has made a strong push for Knox recently. He visited on April 8 and April 9, and took pictures with the nation’s No. 1 prospect and Missouri signee Michael Porter Jr. wearing Missouri uniforms.
Knox has said the two would be an unstoppable duo.
Krzyzewski has told Knox that he will feature him in Duke’s lineup as he did 6-8, 205-pound forward Jayson Tatum. Tatum was Duke’s second leading scorer last season.
Williams has told Knox he will be featured as Justin Jackson was. Jackson, a 6-8, 210-pound was the ACC Player of the Year this season. He helped lead the Tar Heels to a national championship.
Both Tatum and Jackson have announced their intentions to declare for the NBA draft and hire agents, opening the door for Knox at either school.
He is expected to make his decision at the end of the month.
Mohamed Bamba (Duke)
Mohamed Bamba, a 6-11, 207-pound forward, is rated the No. 3 overall prospect, according to 247sports.com.
Bamba played well in the McDonald’s All-American Game and likely would have been named MVP if his team had won. Bamba scored 17 points with 5 rebounds and 4 blocks.
He’s interested in Duke, Kentucky, Texas, Arizona and Michigan.
Bamba is a player who will make an immediate impact. But with the addition of Wendell Carter, a 6-10, 262-pound forward and McDonald’s All-American, and the return of freshman Marques Bolden, a 6-11, 245-pound forward and former McDonald’s All-American who will likely have an increased role next season, it appears less likely Bamba would go to Duke.
Trevon Duval (Duke)
Trevon Duval, a 6-3, 185-pound point guard, is rated the No. 5 overall prospect, according to 247sports.com’s composite rankings.
Duval has visited Duke multiple times. He was there for the Duke-Carolina game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Duval is also interested in Kansas, Arizona, Baylor and Seton Hall.
Duval is a pass-first point guard – something Duke lacked last season – who can also score. Both sophomore guard Frank Jackson and junior guard Grayson Allen had to handle the point guard duties last season.
But with Jackson likely staying for another year, and the addition of Gary Trent Jr. (6-5, 213 pounds), the nation’s top shooting guard in the class of 2017, Allen would likely have to declare for the draft for Duval to choose Duke.
Brian Bowen (N.C. State)
Brian Bowen, a 6-7, 194-pound wing forward, is the No. 15 overall recruit in the country, and ranked No. 4 at his position, according to 247sports.com’s composite rankings. He was the best player on one of the top high school teams in the country, La Lumiere School in Indiana.
He was heavily recruited by former N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried. At the McDonald’s All-American Game last month, he said he had yet to hear from new N.C. State coach Kevin Keatts.
“I love Coach Gottfried, he’s been recruiting me for a while,” Bowen told The N&O last month. “Their assistants have been talking to me, so it’s a little bit up in the air.”
Bowen is also interested in Arizona, Michigan State, Creighton and Texas. It’s seems more likely he will choose one of those schools.