There had been rumors going around throughout the past few months about the possibility of Marvin Bagley reclassifying to the 2017 class. There had also been rumors that he might end up a Blue Devil. But after a solid month of silence…fans, coaches, scouts, and analysts around college basketball became less and less sure of what he might do, until last night.
Bagley announced his decision to forgo his senior season and commit to Duke in the 2017 class on ESPN.
So what does this mean for Coach K and the Blue Devils this year? It means they picked up the #1 prospect in the country, regardless of class. At 6’11, 220 pounds, Bagley will likely be the most versatile forward in college basketball. There’s no question that he’ll need to get stronger to compensate for the physicality of the ACC, but his skill will allow him to get mismatches night in and night out. He’s pretty much the prototypical big man of the new era; having the ability to rebound and run the floor, block and alter shots at the rim, play in pick & roll and pick & pop situations, and stretch the floor with his 3-point shooting capabilities.
This is a huge pickup for Duke. It will make them deeper and give them more length and versatility inside. So now they have a true point guard in Duval, shooters in Allen, Trent, and Tucker, and bigs in Bagley, Carter, Bolden, and DeLaurier. This type of depth could give them a strong boost in their chances of competing for a national championship this year.
But not only has this decision shaken up the NCAA, it changes the landscape for the 2018 NBA Draft. Michael Porter Jr. has recently emerged as the probable top pick in the 2018 draft, but now that Bagley has entered into that debate, things could definitely change.