As expected, Brian Zoubek announced he'd play his college basketball at Duke University at a press conference on Thursday. The 7-foot, 250-pound center from Haddonfield Memorial High School in Cherry Hill, N.J., is the third player in consecutive days to pick the Blue Devils.
The No. 31 ranked player in the class of 2006 narrowed his choices down to Duke and Stanford but he announced he would spend his college days in Durham as a Duke Blue Devil.
"I came into it with the mindset of finding the place where I can play at the highest level and I found that in the ACC with the best coach in the country," Zoubek said. "Coach K - that was why I picked them."
Mike Krzyzewski is generally one of the main reasons why prospects pick Duke. Zoubek was no different. The relationship made with the Hall of Fame coach went a long way with the big man.
"Everyone sees him on television and knows what kind of coach he is and he's extremely good but I was impressed with him even more off the court," Zoubek said. "It's just how honest he is and how much he tries to form a relationship with you. The principles he has instilled in his guys is one of the reasons why he's so successful.
"Duke is the total package," Zoubek said. "You're definitely not taking a risk with them."
Zoubek averaged 21 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks as a junior but has not been a regular fixture on the AAU scene this spring due to an elbow injury. Haddonfield Memorial head coach Paul Wiedeman believes Zoubek should help the Blue Devils in the long run.
"Brian is not a finished product yet," Wiedeman said. "With another year of high school and working out with the guys at Duke (as a freshman), I think he can make a good impact when he gets there. I understand the Scheyer kid can really shoot it. (Zoubek) going to help their shooters just because he works so hard to make everything work."
Jerry Meyer, the National Basketball Scout for Rivals.com, says Duke not only has a good long term project but a rarity in today's college game.
"What's nice about Zoubek is the fact he knows how to play with his back to the basket and you don't find that in prospects with that ability anymore," Meyer said. "He's a hard worker that only going to get better in Duke's system."