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Evan Daniels predicts Duke for Matthew Hurt

The five-star forward is one of the best uncommitted recruits in the 2019 class.

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NCAA Basketball: Virginia at Duke Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Matthew Hurt continues to trend toward a major blue blood, but surprisingly, it’s not the Kentucky Wildcats or Kansas Jayhawks.

Those have long been viewed as the two favorites for Hurt with Kansas just ahead of Kentucky. But as Hurt’s recruitment winds down, it appears the Duke Blue Devils have jumped into the lead.

On Monday, 247 Sports recruiting ace Evan Daniels logged a crystal ball prediction in favor of the Blue Devils for Hurt. This comes after Daniels and other recruiting experts said Duke was coming on strong for Hurt just this past week.

While it would sting to miss out on Hurt, it makes sense that Duke is who he’s now favoring. One of the biggest reasons is the USA Basketball connection. Hurt has been involved with it for several years, and Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski has a very strong influence there.

Hurt did have a stint with the USA U18 team last year with Bill Self running the show, which was part of why the Jayhawks have been viewed as the strong favorites in this recruitment.

However, the ongoing FBI investigation into college hoops corruption has involved Kansas on multiple occasions. That’s likely a big reason why Hurt is now trending away from Self and his Jayhawks.

If Hurt does land at Duke, it will be a tough pill to swallow for Kentucky, but it will be a much bigger loss for Kansas since they’ve been ahead for most of this recruitment, not to mention their frontcourt could be razor thin next season if Dedric Lawson goes pro.

Kentucky, on the other hand, is poised to land five-star forwards Keion Brooks and Isaiah Todd to potentially pair with a sophomore EJ Montgomery and junior Nick Richards.

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