Three Devils Earn MDAA Honors

Josh McRoberts

In what is becoming an annual practice in Durham, three future Blue Devils have been selected to participate in the 28th annual McDonald's All American High School Boys Game™. The game will be played at the University of Notre Dame's Edmund P. Joyce Center on Wednesday, March 30, 2005. <i>TDD</i> has the scoop on which three Devils made the game.

Sources close to the situation have confirmed that Duke will have three signed players participating in the annual All-Star game as Josh McRoberts, Eric Boateng, and Greg Paulus were all selected for the honor. Official announcements will be made later this month.

McRoberts is ranked as Scout.com's top power forward and No. 3 overall player in the class of 2005. Boateng is rated as the No. 2 center prospect in the nation, while Paulus is tabbed as the country's No. 3 point guard.

Approximately 2,500 top high school boy and girl basketball players from across the country are nominated to the McDonald's All American Teams each January. A committee of prominent boys and girls basketball experts then collaborate to select the two teams.

The trio of Blue Devils increases Duke's all time total to 39 McDonalds alumni, second to North Carolina's 48, which includes the Tar Heels' three 2005 selections.

Paulus, the first member from the class of 2005 to commit to Duke, is a consensus top 25 prospect who was considered one of the nation's best football prospects as well. Now, with his football career behind him, the 6'2, 180lbs New York native is ready to take the reigns of the Duke offense next season.

"Paulus is a leader. He's a winner and once he's got talent around him, his play will adjust," says Scout.com analyst Dave Telep. "Right now with his high school team he's got too many responsibilities. Greg is a gifted passer and with high major players around him, that'll shine through. He's a gritty competitor who will have an outstanding four-year career in Durham."

McRoberts was the second member of the class to sign up, inking with Duke before his junior season of high school basketball. Soon after signing, the 6'11 big forward would suffer a back injury which kept him out of action for most of that junior season. One he returned to the court, McRoberts was a different player, breaking onto the National scene and quickly earning Scout.com's top big man rating after dominating his opponents at the USA Development festival.

"It's amazing what a little bit of confidence did for him," said Telep of McRoberts. "He was a different player. He was dunking everything and there's every reason to believe that he winds up on the short list of best big men in this class."

While his future teammates made their decisions early, Delaware center Eric Boateng waited the summer out before announcing his decision to attend Duke, becoming the fourth player to select the Blue Devils. The second rated center in the class, Boateng has a great amount of ‘upside' thanks to his 6'11 frame, large hands, and tremendous athleticism. Boateng is the second British national to pick Duke in the last two years – joining current NBA rookie Luol Deng in the Duke family.

The trio will arrive on campus in June for summer school along with classmates Jamal Boykin and Martynas Pocius, giving Duke a total of seven MDAA alumni on the 2005-2006 roster.

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