Duke will welcome Brandon Boyce and Quentin Harris to campus as the two commits had various scheduling conflicts during the first two “committed players” official visit weekend. Boyce was among the first first players to pledge for the Blue Devils in the class of 2015, offering his commitment way back in December of 2013.
Since that time the somewhat undersized, but no less effective defensive tackle has continued to up his stock while also helping St. Thomas Aquinas to their 8th state championship. In that final game of his high school career, Boyce was phenomenal.
How good you ask? We asked Scout.com’s national recruiting analyst Jamie Newberg about that.
“He was active from start to finish, mainly from his tackle position. He led the Raiders with nine tackles, 4.5 tackles for a loss and recorded a half sack on the night. Simply, Boyce was unblockable.”
As for a general scouting report, Newberg points out Boyce’s physical limitations, but also notes the prospect’s ability to overcome them. Much like former Wake Forest defensive lineman Nikita Whitlock.
“Boyce is listed at 6-foot-0, 250-pounds. He’s closer to 5-foot-10 and that’s being generous. But he plays much bigger than his size.”
“This kid is so quick off the ball and he really knows how to use his hands. His combination of speed and violent hands make him an absolute load to handle. He finished with a team high in tackles (9) and tackles for a loss (4.5). Boyce continually move the line of scrimmage [the opposite direction] and made play after play after play.”
Joining Boyce in town will be quarterback Quentin Harris. The three star signal caller committed Duke back in May, and has remained firmly committed the Blue Devils ever since.
During his final season at Taft School in Connecticut, Harris completed 159 of 295 for 1,642 yards, 14 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He also rushed 90 times for 442 yards and three touchdowns.
One of the primary reasons for choosing Duke was the chance to play under Cutcliffe, who has a strong reputation for quarterback development. He’s also notoriously demanding on his signal callers during their four or five year careers. So where does Harris see himself going as a player in Durham?
“I don’t know that he’s going to change anything specifically, but I feel as though he will enhance every skill I currently have and will help me better utilize those skills. I believe he will help me immensely with the mental aspect of the game as well so that I can dissect defensive coverages and tendencies.”
“The biggest thing I need to focus on is stepping into my throws and following through a little more. I also could be better at utilizing the pump fake and looking off some of my receivers to create some more plays and space.”
OFFERED PROSPECT ON COMMIT WATCH
After suffering an injury and recovering from same, Jeremy McDuffie saw his recruiting stock take the form of a roller coaster. The 5-foot-11, 165 pound defensive back with a 4.5 forty time form Georgia has offers from Duke, Florida, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Louisville, Minnesota, and South Carolina to name a few. But most schools began looking around after McDuffie suffered the setback. Duke was amongst those schools and ended up taking a commitment from a lower rated player, DePriest Turner.
Turner then didn’t live up to his commitment and the two parties parted ways.
Along the way, however, McDuffie’s recruiting coach, Coach Derek Jones, continued a steady wave of communication with McDuffie. When a spot opened up with the departure of Turner, Duke pounced and pushed for a visit.
Look for the Blue Devils to attempt to close McDuffie this weekend to complete the recruiting class’ defensive backfield roster.
IN STATE DE VISITING TOO
Duke will also host Charlotte area defensive lineman Twazanga Mugala, a 6-foot-3, 215 pound defensive end from Ardrey Kell High. Currently Mugala doesn’t have a scholarship offer from the Blue Devils, but that could change depending on the weekend.
Mugala committed to Purdue back in October over offers from Army, Connecticut, and Navy. He’s a player who possesses a good frame and has some tools that, mixed in with two or three years in the right strength and conditioning program, could render him a contributor during the latter half of his five year college career.
The two star prospect, should he be offered and commit, would represent only the second scholarship commitment from North Carolina in the class, joining Mount Pleasant High punter Austin Parker.