Duke fans that were excited about five-star junior Joey Baker enrolling at Duke in the summer of 2019 got a big surprise Wednesday when Baker, a forward at Trinity Christian School (Fayetteville, N.C.), announced that he would indeed be coming to Durham, N.C. a year early.
“Everything happened pretty fast over the last few weeks,” Baker said. “I feel like I’m ready. I wouldn’t have done it if I didn’t think I could handle it.”
Baker is officially a member of Duke’s historic 2018 class, joining Montverde Academy (Fla.) guard R.J. Barrett, Spartanburg Day (S.C.) wing Zion Williamson, Westtown School (West Chester, Penn.) shooting guard Cam Reddish and Apple Valley (Minn.) point guard Tre Jones.
Barrett, Williamson and Reddish are ranked No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 in the class, marking the first time the top three players in the class went to the same school.
Baker, who checked in at No. 15 in the 2019 class, will keep the defense honest from the three-point line and has the size and versatility (6-foot-7) to guard multiple positions.
“They feel like I’ll be able to help because I can shoot the ball and stretch the defense,” Baker said. “I know that going against that freshmen class and the other guys they already have will be great experience for me.”
Baker averaged 11 points and 4.3 rebounds per game so far this season while running with Team Felton (N.C.) on the Under Armour circuit.
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