A Duke basketball sighting in the Empire State shows where a chunk of the program’s recruiting focus is at the moment.
Scheduling influenced trips on the first day of the recruiting/contact period. But priority level was obviously another factor. So during a Monday scrimmage at his high school, Archbishop Stepinac White Plains, N.Y. small forward A.J. Griffin must’ve seen the significance of his main audience being Duke basketball’s longest tenured coaches chief of staff Mike Krzyzewski, right hand man Jon Scheyer, and 11th year assistant Nate James.

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Plus, as insider Adam Zagoria deduced in a tweet, the Durham posse’s choice to kick things off by visiting the 6 foot 7, 215 pound five star sent a message of confidence out into the recruiting universe

“Duke already has [five star small forward] Jalen Johnson and [five star point guard] Jeremy Roach for 2020 https://www.dukebluedevilsjersey.com...ersey-c-9.html, so they’re making a statement by watching a junior the first day they can go on the road.”
Back in June, Griffin, who sits at No. 10 on the 247Sports 2021 Composite and is the namesake of former NBA journeyman Adrian Griffin Amile Jefferson Jersey, made a statement of his own by becoming only the second player from his class to receive a Duke offer. Five star small forward Patrick Baldwin Jr. was the first; now, five star power forward Paolo Banchero, five star small forward Jonathan Kuminga, and five star shooting guard Max Christie round out the list.

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If the special attention from Coach K and his cohorts results in a commitment from Griffin — the one pick to date inside his Crystal Ball says it will — then the Blue Devils stand to benefit immensely from his natural playmaking and elite defense, even if only for a season before he turns pro.
Griffin, who fueled a gold medal performance by Team USA at this summer’s FIBA U16 Americas Championship https://www.dukebluedevilsjersey.com...rsey-c-11.html, boasts a longer and stronger frame than most of his peers, allowing him to assert his will when attacking the basket.

Also, to go along with an Energizer Bunny playing style, the 16 year old has the necessary springs under his feet to beat opposing guards from Point A to Point B and to rise high enough to get his silky jump shot off against taller opponents.
As is the case for a majority of 2021 talents, Griffin does not appear to be anywhere near making a decision as to where he’ll play his college ball or even deciding upon a list of finalists. Currently, he holds offers from 13 schools.

One of those schools is Pitt. Interestingly enough https://www.dukebluedevilsjersey.com...rsey-c-12.html, former Duke player and assistant Jeff Capel, who is now entering his second season as the Panthers’ head honcho, was sitting beside Krzyzewski to watch Griffin — as well as four star combo guard R.J. Davis, one of Pitt’s top 2020 targets.


With Griffin evidently at or near the center of the Duke basketball radar, though, Capel’s pursuit is likely futile.

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UPDATE According to a Monday evening article from Zagoria, Griffin is now planning to visit Duke for Countdown to Craziness Oct. 18 .