Duke Inks Five During Early Signing Period

Boateng, Boykin, McRoberts, Paulus & Pocius Sign With Blue Devils


Dec. 6, 2004

Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski announced the signing of five senior high school players to national letters-of-intent during the November early signing period. Eric Boateng (Balham, England), Jamal Boykin (Los Angeles, Calif.), Josh McRoberts (Carmel, Ind.), Greg Paulus (Manlius, N.Y.) and Martynas Pocius (Vilnius, Lithuania) each signed national letters-of-intent to attend Duke.

A 6-10, 220-pound center, Boateng is ranked No. 19 overall and second among centers by The Insiders Hoops entering his senior season. He was an all-state selection after leading St. Andrew's School to a 16-7 record and the second round of the state tournament as a junior last season. Boateng finished the year averaging 16.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per game. Boateng, a native of England, is a 2004-05 McDonald's All-America candidate.

Boykin, a 6-7, 225-pound forward, is rated as high as No. 25 by Hoop Scoop entering the 2004-05 season. As a junior, Boykin shot 76.6 percent from the field and averaged 19.5 points and 11.4 rebounds per game while leading Fairfax Senior High School to the California state championship. He also had 103 assists, 97 blocked shots and 63 steals last season.

A 6-11, 235-pound power forward, McRoberts is a consensus top 10 talent overall and the top power forward in the 2005 class. Hoopmasters currently has the Carmel, Ind., native ranked as the top high school senior in the country, while RivalsHoops.com and The Insiders Hoops rate him third overall. As a junior, he overcame an early season injury to average 16.8 points, 10.9 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game. McRoberts, a McDonald's All-America candidate, impressed scouts and the recruiting analyst throughout the 2004 summer camp and AAU tournament circuit with a polished offensive game that includes the ability to finish in the lane with either hand.

Paulus, a 6-1, 180-pound point guard, is a consensus top 30 player and one of the top lead guards in the country. RivalsHoops.com rates him No. 25, while The Insiders Hoops ranks Paulus as the third best point guard entering the 2004-05 season. Last season, Paulus earned all-state honors in New York after averaging 23.1 points, 7.1 rebounds, 8.1 assists and 3.2 steals per game while leading Christian Brothers Academy to the Section 3 Class A championship. Paulus, also a standout on the football field, led the CBA to the New York state championship this season and finished his career as New York's all-time leading passer with 11,763 yards and 152 touchdowns. Football recruiting analyst Tom Lemming has him rated as the No. 2 prospect overall and the top high school quarterback in the class of 2005.

The fifth member of the recruiting class is Pocius, a 6-4, 185-pound shooting guard. Pocius, a native of Lithuania, is not ranked by a majority of the recruiting services because he has not played AAU basketball. Last summer he bypassed the AAU circuit to compete at the European Under-18 Championships - where he averaged 18.0 ppg. and shot 42.0 percent from three-point distance. As a junior, Pocius averaged 18.0 points and 4.5 rebounds per game to lead the Holderness School to its first New England Class C state championship.

The Recruiting Services Consensus Index, which combines the player rankings from several well-known recruiting experts including All Star Report, Prep Star, Hoop Scoop, RivalsHoops.com, Hoopmasters and The Insiders Hoops, ranks four of the Duke recruits among the top 40 prep players in the nation with McRoberts at No. 2, Paulus at No. 21, Boateng at No. 24 and Boykin at No. 39. Pocius is currently ranked outside the top 100 in the RSCI, although scouts that saw him play in the European Championships consider him a top 50 talent.

Both RivalsHoops.com and ScoutHoops.com have the Blue Devil recruiting class ranked No.1 in the country, while USA Today has the five-player class ranked second.

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