Last week Duke got a verbal commitment from class of 2014 quarterback Nico Pierre out of Miami, Florida and while it may have gone relatively unnoticed by most, this is a kid to keep an eye on.
The news wasn’t shocking for Duke fans; since taking over at Duke, coach David Cutcliffe hasn’t had much difficulty finding quarterbacks, however, he and the Blue Devils have had to settle for solid 3-star variety quarterbacks, that is until now.
Pierre is the highest rated quarterback that the Blue Devils have gotten a commitment from: 4-star ESPN and in the ESPN 300. At 6-foot-2 and 203 pounds, Pierre has prototypical quarterback size and with a solid 4.82-40 he has pretty good speed, a most desirable combination, especially with the Blue Devils going to a more read-option style offensive attack.
While I’m no quarterback or recruiting guru I have to say what I’ve seen of him in the highlight reals (again not a guaranteed of any success) has me thinking that Pierre could be the best quarterback Duke has had under Cutcliffe and tha is saying something.
His style of play reminds me a lot of Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. And while I not ready to say that Pierre is the second coming of Griffin, his style of play is very similar.
Listed as a pro-style quarterback as well as only a three-star prospect by both Rivals and Scout seems a bit inaccurate. He clearly has the athleticism and speed to be a running threat. He, at least in his highlights has shown some elusiveness and pocket awareness as well and he has an absolute cannon for an arm, making me think the ESPN evaluation is more accurate.
Pierre can make a lot of throws with that strong arm and he has accuracy with those throws and isn’t just a guy with a strong arm who rares back and chucks it down field. Under Cutcliff’e tutelage the sky could be the limit with a kid with his talent.
Pierre was offered scholarships from some very strong programs including Clemson, Louisville, Mississippi State, Nebraska and Wisconsin, yet he chose Duke, and was clearly very happy with his decision tweeting after his commitment that Duke was his dream school.
I’ve watched a lot of Duke Football over the years and I’m not certain I have been more excited about a quarterback prospect as I am about Pierre. He seems to be the perfect fit for where the Duke program, especially offensively, is going and the fact that he is rated highly and is attracted to the Blue Devils is another sign the program is clearly headed in the right direction.
He doesn’t appear to be the average quarterback project that Duke has attracted in the past. He doesn’t appear to be the kind of player that after a few years could compete for a starting position. In my opinion he could be a guy that could compete to start much sooner than that.
That doesn’t mean it will happen but he looks as impressive and as natural at quarterback as Sean Renfree or Thad Lewis did coming into Durham, and it is safe to say that both had outstanding careers.
Not many will look at this commitment and think it is as big a deal as the Duke Football program does, but it is hard not to get a bit excited when you see what this kid can do.
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