6-foot-1 / 215 pounds
Jacksonville (FL) / University Christian
Norman played in all 13 games as a junior as a hard hitting safety. He started against Georgia Tech as the Blue Devils adapted to the Yellow Jackets’ running attack. Norman finished the season with 23 tackles and two pass breakups along with one quarterback hurry. When he moved up to the line of scrimmage in various calls, he became more productive, logging three quarterback sacks for 32 yards.
Norman’s production near the line of scrimmage helped facilitate the move to linebacker during Spring Practice, 2015. He’ll begin the year as the starting weak side linebacker in Duke’s 4-2-5 scheme. He’s a bit undersized for the traditional linebacker, but his hard-nosed approach and speed will give Duke a much different look in terms of pursuit from the second level of defense.
Making the switch to linebacker has as much to do with his skill set as it does with his understanding or performance at the position. Throughout camp head coach David Cutcliffe has noted the speed of his linebackers and the way the are constantly “flying around the field”. Throughout his tenure, Cutcliffe has consistently noted his willingness to get the best players on the field regardless of positions and traditional labels. Norman’s game may not have allowed for him to beat out any of the starting safeties, but it did warrant him finding a place on the field. Now, we’ll see what he can do with it.
How he ended up in Durham
Norman chose Duke over offers from South Carolina and Georgia Tech. He picked the Blue Devils in May after visiting Durham twice after attending Junior Day in 2010.
"Each time I was up there, the coaches and the school at large made a great impression and I had a wonderful trip. I enjoyed myself while I was on campus and felt at home each time I was there. Something I didn't really expect was to feel at home in North Carolina, but when I got around all the players and the coaches it was hard not to get that feeling. Also, when you see the plans they have and are working on, there are going to be some really big things happening at Duke in the next few years."
High School Highlights
Three-year letterman at University Christian under coaches Heath Nivens and David Penland ... helped University Christian to an 8-4 record with a berth in the state playoffs in 2011 ...recorded 84 tackles as a senior ... earned first team 2A all-state honors from the Associated Press following senior season ... 2011 All-First Coast pick by the Florida Times-Union ... named to the 2011 Super 24 team by the Florida Times-Union ... credited with 80 tackles and one interception as a junior ... two-time all-district choice ... also lettered in baseball.a [info from this last section gathered from GoDuke.com]