DURHAM, N.C. – Duke University head football coach David Cutcliffe and his staff announced on Wednesday that 19 student-athletes have signed national letters of intent to join the Blue Devil gridiron program.
The class includes two quarterbacks, eight backs and nine linemen. A total of eight states are represented in the group as Duke signed a class-high nine student-athletes from North Carolina. The group includes four student-athletes from Georgia and one apiece from California, Illinois, Mississippi, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.
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The nine in-state prospects include back Issac Blakeney (Monroe), quarterback Anthony Boone (Monroe), back Brandon Braxton (Charlotte), back Kelby Brown (Matthews), lineman Takoby Cofield (Tarboro), back Braxton Deaver (Charlotte), lineman Nick Sink (Kernersville), back Josh Snead (Smithfield) and back Quan Stevenson (High Point).
Blakeney helped Monroe to 20 wins over his final two seasons and is the two-time reigning state champion in the triple jump while Boone compiled over 9,000 yards of total offense and accounted for 81 total touchdowns in his career at Weddington High School. Teammates at Providence High School, Braxton (50 receptions, 792 yards, 9 TDs) and Deaver (72 receptions, 1,002 yards, 13 TDs) led the Panthers to eight wins and a state playoff berth in 2009.
Brown, who played in three state championship games – winning the title in 2008 – for Charlotte Christian, is rated as the 36th-best outside linebacker in the country by Rivals.com while Cofield helped Tarboro High School to a 15-1 ledger and the state crown as a senior. Sink had 60 tackles and six sacks for Forsyth Country Day in 2009 while Snead rushed for 1,932 yards and 27 touchdowns at Smithfield-Selma High School. After posting 70 tackles as a senior at Andrews High School, Stevenson joined Cofield and Snead on the North Carolina squad that defeated South Carolina, 24-14, in the annual Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas.
Georgia is represented by Woodward Academy teammates Will Bryant (Atlanta) and Juwan Thompson (Fairburn) along with lineman Jamal Bruce (LaGrange) and back C.J. France (Columbus). A lineman, Bryant had 60 tackles during his senior season while Thompson, a back, rushed for 1,622 yards and 22 touchdowns last fall and is listed as the 38th-best running back in the nation by Rivals.com. A two-time all-region pick, Bruce helped Callaway High School to consecutive 10-win seasons in 2008 and 2009 while France, who was chosen for the Georgia Coaches Association North-South All-Star Game, guided Carver High School to 37 victories over three seasons including the 2007 state crown.
Quarterback Brandon Connette, a native of Corona, Calif., joins the Blue Devils after throwing for 1,961 yards and 18 touchdowns as a senior at Santiago High School.
Five linemen round out the class including Steven Ingram (Southaven, Miss.), Dezmond Johnson (Nashville, Tenn.), Jordan Ondijo (Prairie View, Texas), Laken Tomlinson (Chicago, Ill.) and Jamal Wallace (Virginia Beach, Va.). Ingram carded 90 tackles as Southaven High School won nine games in 2009 while Johnson had 18 sacks in his final season and was named to the Dream Team by The Tennessean. Ondijo secured all-district honors after helping Waller High School to a state playoff berth this past fall.
Tomlinson, a SuperPrep All-America selection and the 23rd-top offensive guard in the nation by Scout.com, was a four-time all-conference choice at Lane Technical High School. Wallace helped Green Run High School to back-to-back 10-win seasons and is charted as the 41st-best strongside defensive end in the country by Rivals.com.
Connette and Snead both enrolled at Duke last month.
Season tickets are now on sale and may be purchased online at GoDuke.com or by calling the Duke Athletic Ticket Office toll free at 1-877-375-3853. The Duke Athletic Ticket Office is located in Cameron Indoor Stadium and open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Duke’s 2010 home opponents include non-league foes Alabama, Army and Elon and ACC members Boston College, Miami, North Carolina and Virginia.
In celebration of National Signing Day, GoDuke.com will be offering a 15% discount to all Inside Access Annual Video/Audio Subscriptions. For more information, please visit GoDuke.com.
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