PRINCETON,NJ–Born in Vancouver, British Columbia…landing in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia at the age of six, then packing his bags at 16, and off to New Jersey in pursuit of a basketball career.
The youngster we speak of is former National Cadet Team member, Fergus Duke.
The 2013, 6’3 guard currently at the Hun School of Princeton (New Jersey), has walked an interesting path in that he has reached great heights, yet is relatively unknown in Canada.
That won’t be for much longer as we introduce the #12 NPH-Ranked prospect in 2013.
Duke played his first half of high school hoops in Nova Scotia for the Auburn Eagles, before heading off to New Jersey.
“The dream is to play NCAA D1, and playing high school ball in Nova Scotia just didnt have the exposure that I would need to meet my dream. There’s lots of talent in the province, but it lacks the opportunity to play in front of NCAA coaches,” explained Duke.
“My family and I searched for schools in North-Eastern US and we found a good school with solid academics that would allow me to play in front of a lot of great coaches and against some of the best players and teams in the country.”
As it stands, Duke is on pace to achieve his dream as he currently draws interest from various NCAA schools such as Princeton, Bucknell, Colgate, St Francis, Navy, West Point, Florida Atlantic, and Iona.
Last season, he was not considered a focal point in terms of production due to being the youngest on the team. Despite this, Duke managed to build comfort as the season progressed.
“Being the only underclassman on such a talented and deep team, I didnt play very comfortbly at first. About halfway through the season I was starting and that’s when things started to come together for me,” he said.
“Overall, last season was very productive for me improvement wise. I am a lot more confident in my game now and I learned to play more under control. Looking at where I was a year ago and where I am now, I’d definitely say all the work I put in is paying off.”
In addition to being a part of the 2009 National Cadet team that took home bronze in Argentina, Duke was a part of the 2009 Silver medal team that pulled off the major upset over Ontario to advance to the finals against Quebec, losing 105-103.
“That was an unreal experience. It was heartbreaking when we lost to Quebec, I still remember what it was like after the game in the locker room. Some of those guys put four years into the program and we just came up short.”
Other standouts on the Nova Scotia team included: Rodell Wigginton, DJ Smith, Marquis Clayton, Mandrez Downey, Tyler Scott, and Shaq Smith.
“That was one of the best experiences for me. I needed to be exposed to the best in the country, and the world, before I really understood how much I needed to improve. That team was probably the most talented team I’ve ever been on.”
Duke continued, “Getting that bronze medal in Argentina was crazy, I never thought basketball would be able to take me all over the world like that. Im doing all I can for another shot to play on a national team again.”
Entering his junior year at The Hun School of Princeton, Duke is now ready to take on a leadership role for his team, while continuing to cement his name stateside.
ON BEHALF OF NPH, GOOD LUCK FERGUS, WE WILL BE WATCHING!