Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Duke Has In-Home With 2017 Guard Mark Smith (UPDATED)
Following a busy Tuesday in which 2017 point guard Trevon Duvalvisited campus and junior guard Grayson Allen announced he would return for his senior season, Duke assistant Jon Scheyer had an in-home visit Wednesday with 2017 guard Mark Smith.
The family spoke with Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski by phone.
“[They said] he’s a true 6-foot-5 point guard with great shooting guard abilities,” said Anthony Smith, the player’s father. “He has three-man abilities to finish at the rack and can handle like the small point guards.”
Duke has Allen, Gary Trent Jr. and rising sophomore Frank Jackson in the fold for next season and is hopeful of adding Duval, too.
Duke was also slated to have an in-home on Wednesday with Kevin Knox.
The 6-foot-5 Smith, out of Edwardsville (IL), is ranked the No. 17 point guard in the Class of 2017 by 247Sports.com. He averaged 21.9 points, 8.2 rebounds and 8.4 assists last season.
Smith is also considering Kentucky, Illinois, Michigan State and Ohio State, and will take an unofficial visit to Illinois Thursday.
Kentucky coach John Caliparivisited Smith several weeks ago and offered him a scholarship. They would like him to join a group of guards that includes Hamidou Diallo, Quade Green, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Jermarl Baker.
“He showed me videos of Jamal Murray — how he can spot up shoot and play off the ball and run off screens. Hit opens shots,” Smith told the Herald-Leader.
Meantime, Michigan State is also a strong option.
“We could be a Final Four team — have a chance to win a national championship if I was to come there,” Smith told the Herald-Leader. “They feel like they can develop me into an NBA player.”
Led by new coach Brad Underwood, Illinois is the home-state option.
“I like Coach Underwood,” Smith told the Herald-Leader. “I feel like he’s going to do good things there. They said I would have the ball in my hands a lot and be able to make plays. And they’re bringing in good players.
“He talked to me about how I could fit in to his program. (He said) they’d love for me to be a part of Illinois basketball and try to change it and make history.”
Smith said he also plans to visit Kentucky and Ohio State in the coming days.
Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.