CHARLOTTE, N.C. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- Duke will open the season ranked No. 4 in the country, in large part to the star-studded recruiting class the Blue Devils have added. Javin DeLaurier can attest first-hand to the team's talent level.
"I honestly think practice may end up tougher than some games," DeLaurier said at Wednesday's ACC media day in Charlotte. "Just because of how competitive and how talented our team is. We go at each other every day."
DeLaurier, a two-time all-state selection at St. Anne's-Belfield School in Charlottesville, is now a junior forward with the Blue Devils. He played in 33 games as a sophomore last season -- including five starts late in the year -- and put up career highs in minutes (12.7), points (3.4) and rebounds (4.0).
He recently rejoined the Blue Devils in practice this preseason after missing two weeks with a foot injury.
"My job is just to come in and try to make as many plays as I can to help us win," DeLaurier said, "and that might be taking a charge, getting rebounds, stuff like that. Stuff that may not necessarily show up in the box score because when you have guys who are really talented in scoring the ball, that's what they do."
"Two of the things that he will add this year, one he's been an outstanding leader for this group, his leadership, the leadership aspect and his ability to score the ball," said Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski. "He's become a good shooter."
DeLaurier and fellow junior forward Jack White joined Krzyzewski as Duke's representatives in Charlotte on Wednesday. Many of the questions they faced were about the new Blue Devils. The team's loaded freshman class includes forwards RJ Barrett, Zion Williamson and Cam Reddish, and point guard Tre Jones.
“For a team that doesn’t have a lot of upperclassmen, it’s kind of our job to help the freshmen learn our culture. But thankfully this year we’ve been granted a group of really mature guys, so it’s gone really smoothly," DeLaurier said. "I love our team and I’m really excited about the season.”