Jamal Boykin to Duke!

While many had expected it to take longer, the Duke Blue Devils extended an offer to Los Angeles area power forward Jamal Boykin on Saturday night. As expected he pulled the trigger immediately and became a Blue Devil.

"Breaking news, Jamal Boykin commits to Duke," said Belmont Shore traveling team coach Dinos Trigonis in speaking with national recruiting analyst Dave Telep.

With that head coach Mike Krzyzewski and staff picked up their third commitment from the class of 2005.

Boykin, who has earned a reputation as the ultimate competitor on the floor, opened some eyes last month in Las Vegas when he went head to head with top prospect Jon Brockman and played him nearly even as Krzyzewski looked on.

In that game Brockman went for 31 and 12, while his Friends of the Hoop squad outclassed Boykin's Belmont Shore. However Boykin was the reason the game was competive, scoring 21 points and pulling down 13 rebounds in addition to dishing out six assists.

Speculation held that Boykin, who is rated as the No. 69 player in the class of 2005, was a second tier recruiting priority for Duke. However that never bothered the 6-foot-7, 225 pounder. In fact he always maintained that he had an understanding with head coach Mike Krzyzewski.

"Coach said that I remind him of Shane Battier because when he came to school he really didn't have a position. He told me to keep working on being both power and small forward so that I can do either when I get to school, no matter where I end up."

He told me: ‘We know you can play, so just go out there and do your thing.' I think if I take that advice I can be successful."

With Boykin, Josh McRoberts, and Greg Paulus now in the fold, Duke will likely focus all of the remaining attention on Brockman, center Eric Boateng, and possibly Tyrell Biggs before moving on to the class of 2006.

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