Duke Basketball: Blue Devils have two McDonald’s All-Americans


The Duke Blue Devils have one of the top five rated recruiting classes in 2013 with No. 2 overall star Jabari Parker, top 25 recruit Semi Ojeleye, and top ten shooting guard Matt Jones. Two of those standouts were named to the McDonald’s All-American West team, and those two were Parker (obviously) and Jones.

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Parker is the only one of the three Duke commits to have not signed already with the team, but that’s because he decided on Duke later on (20th of December). The Simeon legend is headed for an amazing year of college hoops as a freshman, and the elite 6’8″ small forward was a no-brainer.

Jones wasn’t as obvious of a pick, but the DeSoto standout and top 30 overall recruit is another possible five-star guy. An elite shooter, Jones is most likely the best pure shooter in the 2013 basketball recruiting class with incredible range. This guy can hit pretty much anything from anywhere, and he is clearly one of the top five recruits coming out of the state of Texas in this class. Jones is rated by some recruiting sites as outside of their top 50, but that’s far too low. A McDonald’s All-American selection was not something I had Matt Jones tabbed for, but you can’t really disagree with the selection.

The problem that Jones has is that while he is such a deadly shooter, he isn’t much of a passer and some believe he could stand to improve on defense. I think some people are overly critical of Jones’s ball-handling, because it is quite solid. As for his character and work ethic, those intangibles are excellent and make him a great pick-up for Duke.

Both of these players are well-deserved recipients of the honor to be on the team, but one choice was definitely a lot easier to see coming than the other one. By the way, I have become a huge fan of Jones’s ever since I’ve watched more tape on him and have come to appreciate that he’s better at some portions of the game that people like to knock him for. And besides, that kind of deadly shooting will make you successful anywhere in college; shooting translates better than any skill.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.