In another major addition for Duke basketball and Jon Scheyer, the Blue Devils received a commitment from Dereck Lively.
The 7-foot-1, 220-pound Lively is a 5-star center in the 2022 class, who has seen his stock soar over the last few months. Back in May, Lively was considered a top 35-40 prospect in the class, although that was obviously set to change, quickly. Lively was dominant during performances this summer during the Nike EYBL circuit.
Now, he checks in as the No. 2 overall player in the 2022 class. Lively covers incredible amounts of ground on the defensive side of the floor; he can excel with making hustle plays, too. However, there’s far more to his skill set, including a diverse offensive game.
Dereck Lively, a lob-catching, shot-blocking, 3-point shooting 7-footer, has seen his stock explode with Team Final this summer. Here are some highlights from his Nike EYBL opener. pic.twitter.com/B7iYUv4XZ5
— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) July 15, 2021
Right from the jump, there was plenty of optimism for the outlook of the Jon Scheyer era of Duke basketball. When Jeff Capel left for Pittsburgh in 2018, Scheyer became the program’s go-to recruiter. There were reasons to be bullish on Scheyer and Duke’s success on the recruiting trail. However, what Scheyer, Nolan Smith and Chris Carrawell have put together in a short span of time is deeply impressive.
This is an impressive passing of the torch from Mike Krzyzewski to the staff that will replace him atop the program.
Duke currently holds the No. 1 recruiting class for 2022. This started back in late July when the Blue Devils picked up a commitment from 5-star power forward/center Kyle Filipowski. Less than a week later, 5-star small forward Dariq Whitehead committed to Duke as well. One month after that, in early September, 4-star shooting guard Jaden Schutt, one of the top shooters in the country, picked Duke over Michigan State. Now, it’s Lively’s turn.
With Lively, Whitehead and Filipowski, Duke has three of the top 10 overall prospects in the 2022 class. This is a historic haul, right out of the gate for Scheyer.
Lively, who plays his prep basketball for the Westtown School (Bellfonte, Pa.), took his official visit to Duke in late June — right around when Filipowski had his official visit, too. The plan/dream scenario for Duke has always been to pair those two together. In the end, Duke beat out multiple heavyweights — North Carolina and Kentucky — to land Lively.
Duke may not be done yet, either. Two more 5-star wings — Mark Mitchell and JJ Starling — are set to take official visits to Durham over the next four weeks.