DURHAM, N.C. ? Five-star forward Amile Jefferson, a senior at Friends? Central School in Philadelphia, Pa., signed a national letter of intent to play basketball at Duke University beginning in the 2012-13 season, Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski and his staff announced on Tuesday.
?We are ecstatic about Amile joining us,? Krzyzewski said. ?He is a perfect young man for Duke University. His educational background at Friends' Central School prepared him so well for Duke, and his high school coach prepared him well to play at Duke. He is going to be able to help us right away. He is a winner, they won four straight state titles, and he is an easy guy to play with because he will do anything to help his team win.?
A 6-7, 190-pound power forward, Jefferson averaged 19.9 points, 10.2 rebounds and 2.7 steals per game as a senior at Friends? Central. He ranks as the No. 25 recruit and No. 4 power forward in the 2012 class according to ESPN.com, the No. 21 recruit and No. 3 power forward by Scout.com and the No. 36 recruit and No. 7 power forward by Rivals.com.
?Coach K brings an energy to our team that I want to bring back to him,? Jefferson said. ?When he looks in my eyes, I want him to see the energy that I see in his eyes.?
Jefferson is the 57th McDonald?s All-American to commit to Duke and the 55th under head coach Mike Krzyzewski. He will be one of six former McDonald?s All-Americans on the 2012-13 edition of the Blue Devils. Jefferson is joined in the 2012 class by guard Rasheed Sulaimon, while redshirt freshmen Alex Murphy and Marshall Plumlee are also expected to make a significant impact next season.
?Our class is really four great youngsters with Amille, Rasheed [Sulaimon] and then Alex [Murphy] and Marshall [Plumlee] redshirting,? Krzyzewski said. ?With those four guys ready to play, they are going to help us immensely. They are talented and all have great character.?
Duke returns nine letterwinners from a 2010-11 squad that went 27-7 and reached the NCAA Tournament for the 17th consecutive season. Jefferson will team with a front court that includes senior forwards Mason Plumlee and Ryan Kelly, junior forward Josh Hairston and redshirt freshmen Murphy and Marshall Plumlee.