The 6-foot-6 native of Weston, Massachusetts had some big summer outings with Expressions Elite at Peach Jam which led to interest from Duke and a phone call from Coach K. Currently regarded as Scout.com's No. 60 overall prospect in the Class of 2017, Samuels is excited that Duke is becoming more involved.
"It just feels really great," Samuels said of Duke showing interest.
"Duke was around last session of Peach Jam and they said they wanted to recruit me.
At Peach Jam, Samuels was a breakout player as he averaged 14.6 points and 9.6 rebounds per game while shooting 47 percent from the field and 45 percent from three-point range. The eye-opening performances playing alongside talented players like point guard Tremont Waters and big man Nick Richards led to Duke getting involved.
"Nate James, he's been contacting me almost every day or every other day. And last week, I was contacted by Coach K and he called me while he was in Las Vegas so that blew my mind because I saw it on my phone," Samuels said. "He said he really liked my game and he wanted to continue to recruit me."
Samuels said that Indiana, Georgetown, Pitt, Villanova and Xavier are the schools that have been on him the most recently as he's trying to figure out the next step in the recruiting process.
"I think once I have all my offers on the table, I'll see what I got and then I'll have to sit down with my parents and figure out when I'll take my visits and see what everything is about," Samuels said. "I can't just commit off the fact that 'this is the most prestigious program' or 'you're going to get the most playing time.' It's going to be about me being on campus because I have to live there eventually so that's going to come into play."
Besides seeing what the campus life is like, Samuels is also focused on how he is going to further develop his game at the college level.
"Definitely playing time, education and then just wanting me to develop and wanting me to get better. That's what matters to me the most," Samuels said. "I don't think I'm a finished product in any way. I think I have so much to improve on, so once I step on a college campus I can work everyday on something and get better."
This spring with Expressions, Samuels averaged 13.1 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. One of the reasons Samuels has become a more sought-after national recruit in July is his improved perimeter shooting. During the spring, Samuels was only 31 percent from three-point range while his shot was much better during July.