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Duke women's basketball 2020-2021 player preview: Vanessa de Jesus

Duke's new head coach Kara Lawson has a talented freshman in Vanessa de Jesus.
Duke's new head coach Kara Lawson has a talented freshman in Vanessa de Jesus.

College basketball season is approaching, and with that the Blue Zone gives you a breakdown of the 2020-2021 women's basketball squad. Up first, Duke's lone freshman on the roster: Vanessa de Jesus.

Vanessa de Jesus

Year: Freshman

Height: 5-foot-8

Position: Guard

Last year’s statline: N/A

Game breakdown: The Sierra Canyon product has quite an impressive resume. She was a Max Preps All-American and finalist for California Gatorade Player of the Year, as well as earning numerous more local awards for her play. In her senior year, she racked up 15.0 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 3.8 APG and 2.0 SPG. 

De Jesus can do it all and that may translate to success at Duke. Her ability to get to the basket and score, combined with her quick defensive reflexes will be a lethal combo when she’s on the floor. Adjusting to the speed of play is one issue many freshman have a hard time overcoming, so it will be interesting to see how well she meshes at the next level. 

Role on the team: De Jesus will come into this season as the only freshman on the team. With a new head coach in Kara Lawson, it is unclear just how exactly she will be used. It is unlikely she will start, but we could see her play some valuable minutes off the bench and work her way up as the season progresses. 

There is a lot of hype around what she will be able to do on the floor with all the accolades she racked up in high school, but college is a different level and it is always interesting to see how people are able to make the transition. The no. 37 ranked espnW prospect may ball out this season and help fill the offensive gap left behind by Haley Gorecki and Leaonna Odom. 

Projected stats:  4.2 PPG, 2.3 APG, 8.0 MPG

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