Duke Welcomes Harrison Barnes

With Harrison Barnes on Campus—the No. 2 prospect in the class of 2010 according to Rivals.com—Duke students have taken it it upon themselves to welcome and encourage the high-profile recruit. With Barnes' official visit scheduled to start this morning (and just a day after the Blue Devils received a verbal commitment from point guard prospect Kyrie Irving) students have welcomed Barnes with signs, paper fliers and even a painted bench on one of the quads.

These measures, however, may be in violation of NCAA rules. During Irving's visit to campus on Sept. 25, similar signs hung throughout campus but were taken down in order to comply with NCAA standards:

Signs around West Campus urging Kyrie Irving to commit to Duke might have looked cool, but they might have also committed something else: a violation of NCAA rules.

According to the Charlotte Observer and confirmed by associate director of athletics Jon Jackson, the canvas signs hung outside of dorm windows go against a 1991 decision by the NCAA regarding a similar situation with a recruit on campus. Once Duke compliance personnel became aware of the signs, NCAA law mandated they ask students to remove them. The Duke athletic office also urged fans to refrain from hanging more signs during the day by posting warning messages on Blue Devil fan message boards.

Irving committed yesterday on ESPNU after narrowing his list down from Duke, Kentucky and Texas A&M. According to Rivals.com, Irving is the No. 9 prospect in the country for the class of 2010.

Barnes is a 6-foot-6 guard from Ames, Iowa who is generally considered to be choosing between Duke and Tobacco Road rival North Carolina. If Barnes follows Irving's lead, Duke's recruiting class will likely be as talented as any in the nation.

Associate director of athletics Jon Jackson was not immediately available for comment.

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