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Matthew Hurt: I’m Coming Back

Good news for Duke’s upcoming season

Virginia Tech v Duke
DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA - FEBRUARY 22: Matthew Hurt #21 of the Duke Blue Devils shoots over Isaiah Wilkins #1 of the Virginia Tech Hokies during the second half of their game at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 22, 2020 in Durham, North Carolina.
Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

We’ve heard this unofficially, including from Cassius Stanley, but it’s always good to get it from the horse’s mouth: Matthew Hurt will be back for his sophomore year.

We weren’t really concerned about Hurt applying for the draft. He certainly could have but physically he’s nowhere near ready for that.

He might have transferred though.

We’re not saying that he was considering it; we don’t know. But it’s the reality of our time. People misunderstand their level or what they need to do and think they’ll do better somewhere else.

It happens but most of the time it doesn’t work out like players might expect. Jordan Tucker did better at Butler than he did at Duke but he’s nowhere near an NBA player. Billy McCaffrey left because he wanted to play point guard and no one was going to move ahead of Bobby Hurley. He had a nice career at Vanderbilt, but may have overestimated his potential as a point guard. You can go down the list. Guys leave Duke periodically, like all schools, and some do better at their new schools, like Michael Gbinije, but he’s never really whiffed the NBA.

So Hurt could have done that and he could have rolled the dice to see if he’d be immediately eligible if the NCAA follows through with transfer reform.

Fortunately, he didn’t. The player we saw early was talented but at 214 lbs., physically weak. That changed by the end of this past season and by next season, if Hurt’s around 235-240, he should be able to give as good as he got this season.