Guruspeak: What Livingston Means To Duke

After a long recruiting process, the Devils got their man last week as Shaun Livingston gave head coach Mike Krzyzewski a verbal commitment to play at Duke next season. TDD polls a panel of high school experts on what Livingston will mean to Duke, and how he will fit in with fellow backcourt running mate DeMarcus Nelson.

Rob Harrington (Prepstars.com):

Shaun Livingston has the potential to be an All-American by the time he's a sophomore. He'd be a big-time guard if he were 6-2, which is as strong a statement as I can make.

What I'll be looking for most closely is how Duke will use him. He's at his best with the ball in his hands, so running off screens and hunting jump shots likely won't be his role.

Defensively, I think he has to be a two or three to play Duke's overplay man-to-man, but on offense I see him as a frequent initiator. DeMarcus Nelson isn't a point and is an excellent shooter, so there should be no chemistry problems between those two players.

If I were forming a college team from the Class of 2004, Livingston would be my top pick, ahead of even Dwight Howard.

Clint Jackson (TDD, IC):

I think Livingston is an elite level talent. I think he's the best overall player in high school basketball in his entire class, in terms of impact. Here's a guy with uncanny passing ability, an extraordinary height advantage for his position and oodles of natural instincts with the basketball.

Take some of Jason Kidd's imagination with the ball, Penny Hardaway's presence on the floor and roll it all up in Jalen Rose's body -- and you have Livingston. He can score, he can dunk (over folks), he can run the team and set people up and he can defend with those long limbs and quick feet of his.

Like I said -- he's an elite level prospect. I think he starts and stars from day one in Durham.

Dave Telep (TheInsiders.com):

For the last two years, I've though that Shaun Livingston is the best point guard in America. His overall package at the position is awesome. From posting up smaller guards to his super vision, he's big time.

I think down the road, as his career progresses, he's going to be one of the best to play the position in college in recent memory. In my mind, he raises the expectations of a program and team.

As for his joining Nelson, I think that's a great thing. Nelson loves to get out and run and to me, Livingston is the perfect running mate for transition, slashing players.

Greg Swaim (GregSwaim.com):

Livingston brings a lot to the table for the Blue Devils, as he's a consensus top ranked player (between 2-5) nationally and is the nation's top point guard, along with being a big guard at 6-foot-7.

This latest commitment brings Duke's recruiting class to #8 with Livingston, DeMarcus Nelson and David McClure and ensures that with back-to-back great classes the Devils will continue to maintain their dynasty.


Blue Devil Digest Top Stories