State champion QB knows all about Duke

In-state recruits have taken notice that Tobacco Road's most successful program of late resides in Durham under head coach David Cutcliffe. This very local prospect says the Blue Devils are his "number one" as he prepares for a big summer and subsequent senior season.

As a junior, Southern Durham High standout Kendall Hinton finished the season with 3,975 yards passing and 39 touchdowns and 1,185 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns. He also guided his team to the first state championship in school history. College coaches have taken note, and several have offered early.

"Right now I have offers from Duke, North Carolina State, East Carolina, and App State," said Hinton. "I have interest from most of the ACC, West Virginia, Tennessee, Indiana, and South Carolina as well."

The Blue Devils were the first program to jump in, offering Hinton as a sophomore. Since that time he has gotten to know various coaches on the Duke staff and has spoken extensively with head coach David Cutcliffe and assistant turned offensive coordinator Scottie Montgomery.

"Coach Montgomery is really cool. We talk a lot. I've also talked with Coach Cutcliffe about playing the position. He's never really tried to sell me on who he's coached, but I understand his reputation. I already knew when they offered me how successful his quarterbacks are."

Hinton named the Blue Devils his leader back in December, and credits the job Cutcliffe has done as one of the primary reasons.

"Really, there has been a huge change under him. Duke isn't just on the rise any more. They are winning the conference."

As a prospect the 6-foot, 185 pound signal caller has developed a reputation as a quarterback who can beat you with his arm and his legs. It's a scouting report Hinton doesn't shy away from, or disagree with.

"I feel like my strengths are my ability to throw the deep ball, and my pocket presence. If I get in trouble, I can make plays and extend plays to give my receivers a chance to get open. One thing I really need to improve on this year is being more of a vocal leader. And taking control in the huddle."

Hinton says in the next few weeks he's going to sit down and begin planning out his summer schedule - one that'll likely include combines and camps. After that he'll take some visits and hopefully arrive at a decision.

"I'm hoping to be able to break it all down and make a decision by the season if possible. I know our goal during the season is to get another state championship. I am hoping I can get to 5,000 yards passing this season as well."

Last year Hinton recorded a forty time of 4.65, a bench press of 235 pounds, a squat max of 350 pounds and a 4.2 shuttle time. He was named All-Conference, Conference Player of the Year, All-Metro, and All-Area.

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