Duke has been ranked in the preseason top 10 for 15 consecutive years, and it does not look as though that streak will end anytime in the near future.
Head coach Joanne P. McCallie has quite a lot to work with after securing the No. 2 recruiting class for the Class of 2015. All five members of the highly-touted group are ranked in the Top 100, but the numbers alone do not even begin to do this monster of a recruiting class justice.
“We’re five for five on this one,” McCallie said. “We’ve never been like this. This might be—if we can get it done right—the best transition team in the history of this program with that much depth and versatility.”
The five begins with No. 5 Angela Salvadores—a 5-foot-8 point guard from Spain—who boasts both distributing finesse and scoring ability. Salvadores posted an unprecedented and attention-warranting 40 points in Spain’s 77-75 loss to the United States in the 2014 FIBA U17 World Championship. Salvadores—who also averaged 7.4 rebounds—was named MVP of the tournament.
Next in the class is No. 9 Kyra Lambert, another dynamic point guard who stands at 5-foot-8 and has superb ball handling skills to accompany expert court vision. She somewhat controversially was declared ineligible to play at the varsity level during her junior season after transferring high schools, so opted instead to play at the junior varsity level, averaging 24 points in 16 minutes per game.
The third player in McCallie’s 2015 class, No. 25 Faith Suggs, is a 6-foot-1 shooting guard. The Plainfield, Ill., native is a double threat—dominant in the post and smooth on the perimeter. Elite-level athletics is in her DNA, as her father was a five-year NFL defensive back. Suggs should add to the Blue Devil’s already-impressive long-range play.
No. 55 Haley Gorecki was the first in the Class of 2015 to verbally commit to Duke. Gorecki, like Suggs, is an Illinois native and a versatile performer from beyond the arc. At 6-feet, she has been praised for her advanced basketball IQ and efficient play on the perimeter.
The final piece of this celebrated Blue Devil class is No. 46 Crystal Primm. a 5-foot-11 combo guard. Her smooth stroke garnered her attention from college coaches at a young age, and she could easily be converted into a true wing player. Primm operates extraordinarily well under pressure and can hold her own in the post.
“This is just a fantastic group,” McCallie said. “They are down to earth and dedicated, and [there is] really a lot of Duke pride in this group. They are all different and they all bring different things to the table.”
This historic recruiting class, when combined with the young talent currently playing for McCallie, certainly has the capability to make history. If everything goes as expected and next year's group meshes well with this year's sizable freshman class, Duke should be able to seriously compete against big names such as Connecticut and ACC rival Notre Dame for a chance to cut down the nets for the first time in program history.
“They understand that they have a chance to make history in trying to bring the first national championship to Duke,” McCallie said. “They really are committed and they really are thinking of the bigger picture—championships.”
Get The Chronicle straight to your inbox
Signup for our weekly newsletter. Cancel at any time.