Duke will be without one of the top freshmen in the country when it opens the season. Harry Giles, ranked as the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2016 by ESPN, had surgery on his left knee Monday and will miss six weeks, according to ESPN’s Jeff Goodman.
Giles has a long history of knee injuries. He tore his ACL in his right knee in the first game of his senior year of high school and was expected to work his way back slowly as Duke began practice last week. Giles also tore his ACL, MCL, and meniscus in his left knee while playing for USA Basketball following his freshman year of high school.
Giles is anticipated to be a top selection in the 2017 NBA Draft, currently projected at No. 3 in the latest mock by DraftExpress. Duke will still have plenty of options in the front court, with five-star freshman Marques Bolden, sophomore Chase Jeter, and redshirt senior Amile Jefferson all expected to contribute this season.
Duke is the overwhelming favorite at the start of the college basketball season in large part because of the country’s No. 1 recruiting class, a group led by Giles and wing Jayson Tatum. Even without Giles, Duke should still be No. 1 in the preseason polls because of a unique blend of talented veterans like Grayson Allen, Matt Jones, and Jefferson to go with the star-studded recruiting class.