Duke In Final Battle For Duncan

The Duke coaching staff has become very adept at making late charges for big time prospects. After landing Vince Oghobaase and then making a late push in the ongoing running for Marcus Jones, the Blue Devils now find themselves in the final two for the services of four star offensive lineman Paul Duncan.

"I've cut my list down to just two schools, and I hope to make my decision pretty soon," says 6-foot-6, 290lbs offensive lineman Paul Duncan. "I'm going to visit Notre Dame this weekend, and I hope to make a decision soon after that."

With the Irish occupying the final official visit, who is the other program with a shot at the No. 20 rated lineman in the class of 2005?

"I really like what the coaching staff at Duke has done. They have recruited me honestly for the entire process, and I really believe they are getting that program rebuilt. They are right there with me."

Still, the general consensus among recruitniks is that Duncan's long standing dream has been to play in South Bend. However, given the recent coaching changes, and lack of success by Notre Dame standards over the past few years, the East Paulding (GA) standout hasn't yet pulled the trigger.

"I've gotten to know Coach Weis a little bit over the time he's been there. I think he's got the ability to get things back to where they need to be there. This weekend is about meeting him and the assistant coaches, and learning all I can about them."

So it would seem that the Blue Devils are running second, something that Duncan sheepishly admits when pressed for a leader.

"I'd have to say Notre Dame leads, but it's not an open and shut case or I'd have already committed."

Duncan says the appeal of Duke is not only in the classroom, but also in the size and feel of the university. Something he has picked up on with a number of unofficial visits to the Durham campus.

"I don't really care too much about going to a big school. I mean I come from a relatively small place now, and it's a nice environment that I'm comfortable with. I like the kind of closeness we have here. I think Duke has the same kind of environment."

Duncan has already qualified academically for competition at the Division I level.

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