Catching Up With 2018 Potential Izzo Target Duane Washington Jr.
Grand Rapids Christian is loaded with talented, lead by Michigan State commit Xavier Tillman and Oakland commit James Beck. The Eagles are undefeated and one of the favorites to win a state title in Class A.
One 2018 standout for Christian that has plenty of attention already is 6’3 combo guard Duane Washington Jr. Washington has 9 offers currently from Akron, Binghamton, Central Michigan, Loyola of Chicago, Northern Illinois, Oakland, Toledo, Youngstown State and Western Michigan, but is also hearing from Butler, Cincinnati, Arkansas, Missouri, DePaul, St Joes, Michigan and Michigan State.
Duane has had a chance to get to some of the closest schools for visits to go to games as well as taking a few longer trips. He told Spartan Nation, “I have family in Arkansas so I was able to get down there over Thanksgiving and watch them practice and stuff.” Washington said. “I also went to Missouri and that was cool too.”
Duane most recently went to Butler for their game against Xavier and was very impressed “Hinkle Field house is special.” Washington said. “It was a great atmosphere and you feel like you can touch the players you are so close. It is like you are sitting on top of the floor.” Duane has also been to Michigan State a few times and will be there for the Michigan game this Sunday. “Being so close it is easy to get there.” Washington said. “I talk with the coaches a lot and have a good relationship with them.”
Duane, like most basketball people in the state, knows all about Michigan State basketball as he was a fan from an early age. “I remember when I was real young watching Thomas Kelly who now is one of my better friends in Grand Rapids, and just seeing how they do things, and seeing all the guys from (Keith) Appling to Draymond (Green) to Denzel (Valentine) and now for them to be recruiting me is really cool.”
Duane doesn’t have a front runner at this time or any time table for making a decision, but he does know what is important to him. “It’s a very important decision for sure.” Duane said. “My education is important so that is first, then I want to go to a place that feels like a second home, where the coaches are like another parent to me. And lastly of course how I fit in to their basketball program on the court is important to.”
Duane is working hard to become the best player he can be, “I’m Just in the gym working, getting stronger, faster, I want to be better defensively too.” Washington added “I want to be able to guard me is the way I look at it.” Washington mentioned watching a lot of basketball too when he isn’t in the gym or weight room working so that he can pick up things from other players games. “I would love to have Steph Curry’s shooting, John Wall’s speed, Kyrie Irving’s handles and Avery Bradley’s defense.” Washington said with a laugh… So would ever NBA and college coach in the country.
Duane said he will be playing AAU with The Family on Nike’s EYBL tour but for right now he and his teammates are focused on trying to win a state title. “Coach is always talking about the process and taking it one game at a time.” Washington said. “So I am trying to stay focused on each step and not look ahead, but yeah there is no question what our goal is for this team.”
Stay tuned to Spartan Nation for the latest on Tom Izzo’s recruiting and Washington specifically.