With incoming point guard Trevon Duval expected to head to the NBA in 2018, Duke is already looking for a point guard to replace him.
Two of Duke’s top targets, Darius Garland and Tre Jones, are competing at the Nike Peach Jam, and Duke’s staff, including head coach Mike Krzyzewski and associate head coach Jeff Capel, is prioritizing their games, along with others, including 6-11 Marvin Bagley III of Northridge, Cal. and Sierra Canyon, who is expected to take an official visit to Duke soon.
“They’re gonna be here tonight (Thursday),” the 6-2, 160-pound Garland out of Nashville (Tenn.) Brentwood Academy said earlier Thursday of the Duke staff. “They text me all the time, coach (Jon) Scheyer, coach Capel. They said most of the freshmen this year should be going to the draft next year so they really need an intelligent class that’s going to come in and protect the ball and do what they need to do to win.”
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The 6-3 Duval is currently projected as a lottery pick in 2018 according to DraftExpress.com.
Garland says he’d like to play with Jones in college, and the two could theoretically complement each other with Garland as more of a combination guard. In that way, they could be similar to how Duke used Quinn Cook and Tyus Jones, Tre’s older brother, who is also here at the Peach Jam supporting his brother.
“I mean, it’s a lot of us who are trying to make a package deal out of each other,” Garland said.
“Cameron Reddish, Tre Jones, me and Marvin, we played together a few years back so we’ve been talking about it. Me and Romeo (Langford) have a really good connection, so I’m trying to get him over with me, too. Wherever I go, I want him to come with me.”
Bagley, the 6-7 Reddish out of the Westtown (Pa.) School and the 6-5 Langford out of New Albany (Ind.) High School are ranked Nos. 1, 3 and 5 by ESPN.com, respectively. Garland is the No. 11 prospect.
Garland’s father is former NBA player Winston Garland, who spent seven seasons with Golden State, L.A. Clippers, Denver, Houston and Minnesota. He lived in Indiana until seventh grade, when the family moved to Nashville.
“I’m from Indiana so we watched a lot of Indiana, Duke, Kansas, any game that came on TV, we was watching it,” he said.
Garland plans to take five official visits later this summer and and fall, “but we don’t have any official dates yet.”
He listed Duke, Indiana, Kansas, UCLA and Vanderbilt among the schools recruiting him the hardest, but said he hasn’t finalized a list yet.
“Duke, UCLA, Vanderbilt, Kansas, they all want to be first,” he said of his visits. “I don’t know yet, we’re still deciding.”
He has also discussed taking official visits with Reddish, who recently won a bronze medal with the USA U19 team at the FIBA World Cup in Egypt.
“Yeah, we’ve been talking about it a lot,” he said.
As for his future plans, Garland said, “I just like to win. That’s my main focus is to win and get to the next level.”