Josh Hairston: Duke's Anti-Plumlee?
The Duke Blue Devils were the 2010 Kings of March. Part of the reason was the sudden impact of big man Brian Zoubek. Zoub was a tower or a player, and a true seven footer.
As Big Z rides off into the sunset, it is assumed that the Blue Devil frontcourt will be dominated by two guys that know each other very well; after all they are brothers.
Last season Duke was a family affair as Miles Plumlee scored 206 points and brother Mason scored 125. Many in the mass media and Duke Fan-nation feel that both Plumlees will be stepping into Duke's starting lineup and playing alongside one another for most of the year.
Some believe that it is very likely that Marshall Plumlee could also be suiting up for Duke in the future as well, but there is someone that could be Duke's anti-Plumlee. A player that could fight for playing time and slide into the starting lineup over one of the brothers.
Josh Hairston is not a Plumlee, and will often times be the odd man out. This could add additional motivation as he will be looking to outplay and outwork Miles and Mason to get himself on the court.
Hairston may be asked to play down low, but he is no Zoub. Josh is big enough to bang down low, often scoring with his back to the basket, but what may separate him is his ability to stretch the floor and shoot out to around seventeen feet. He prefers playing facing the basket. He has a quick first step and will cause match up problems in the future.
The former Virginia and Maryland state player of the year will more than likely be a project player at Duke. He is not the player that will be the breakout freshman for next years team.
He will not be the most athletic player on the team, and is slightly undersized to be a dominant center. Where he may fit in, could be at the forward position where his shooting will be very important. In short, Hairston is the perfect system player for Duke and could blossom into something special later in his career.
He is the picture perfect character guy that will call Duke home.
If you were to compare Hairston with a former Duke player it would have to be to Josh McRoberts. Although Hairston is not as hyped as McRoberts was out of high school, Hairston is a solid passer and will often find himself at the free throw line looking to make the perfect pass or pull up.
While Josh may not be the most talented player in this recruiting class, over time he could prove to be one of the most important. If he is able to grow over his career he could develop into a solid player and have a good career at Duke.
If any of the "new" guys are here for four years it is Josh Hairston, and Duke is lucky to have him.
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