basketball Edit

What's the impact of five-star Matthew Hurt's Duke choice?

Matthew Hurt
Matthew Hurt (https://rivals.com)

Duke added another five-star prospect on Friday when senior forward Matthew Hurt announced that he would play his college ball in Durham.

A 6-foot-9 stretch forward from Rochester (Minn.) John Marshall who ranks No. 7 nationally, Hurt chose Mike Krzyzewski and the Blue Devils over Kansas, Kentucky and North Carolina. What's he mean to Duke? How significant is the impact of losing out on him and where do his other finalists turn to try and fill his spot?

DUKE

The impact: Here we go again, Duke now has the top recruiting class in the country for 2019. Having the top class is something that has become commonplace in Durham but more important than a recruiting class ranking is the fact that Hurt fills a huge need, shooting. Traditionally, Coach K's teams have been known for their ability to stretch defenses but they've fallen short the past few years due to a lack of shooters. Now Hurt isn't going to replace the departed firepower of a Zion Williamson or a R.J. Barrett, but he can step right in and be a double digit scorer capable of softening defenses.

Hurt joins a class that already includes current No. 1 Vernon Carey Jr., five-star Wendell Moore and four-star scorer Boogie Ellis. More help could be on the way, too, top 35 wing Cassius Stanley reveals his choice on Monday Duke is the favorite.

KANSAS

The impact: This is a tough loss for Bill Self and the Jayhawks. Hurt is a kid that they prioritized for some time, appeared to lead for during much of his recruitment and Hurt played for Self last summer on USA Basketball's 18U team. They needed a shooter and without him they could be quite thin in the frontcourt.

Where can they turn: The main target has to be five-star forward Precious Achiuwa. He isn't the skilled player that Hurt is, but he's a big time athlete and could make an instant impact as a freshman and he's been on campus for an official visit. Grad transfer T.J. Holyfield is an option and it will be interesting to see if they can get involved with Virginia Tech transfer Kerry Blackshear.

KENTUCKY

The impact: This shouldn't be looked at as a troubling miss for Kentucky. With the recent additions of Bucknell grad transfer Nate Sestina and five-star forward Keion Brooks, the Wildcats have some frontcourt options. Also, Brooks has some ability to stretch the floor so Hurt was more of a luxury than a must.

Where can they turn: If Kentucky wants to get another forward, they'll likely need to look at the grad transfer market. Five-star Jaden McDaniels is still in play and would be a more than capable replacement for Hurt, but he's tough to read and the thought at this time is that he stays closer to home and picks Washington.

NORTH CAROLINA

The impact: With the departures of Cameron Johnson and Coby White, Roy Williams and the Heels could have really used a shooter like Hurt so this one stings a bit. It's UNC so you know they will get up and down the floor and be a high scoring squad, but a guy to soften defenses as a stretch four would have been really helpful.

Where can they turn: Like Kansas, UNC is involved with five-star Precious Achiuwa and has had him on campus but they seem to be a bit behind the Jayhawks and Memphis. The grad transfer market would appear to be their best bet and they have also been linked to Kerry Blackshear are expecting a visit from Charleston Southern's Christian Keeling and some others like North Carolina native Rayjon Tucker though it's unclear how involved they are with him with Auburn, Memphis and West Virginia having secured visits.