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Florida loses No. 3 basketball recruit to Duke

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Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012 6:14 pm | Updated: 6:47 pm, Thu Dec 20, 2012.

Jabari Parker, the No. 3 recruit in the 2013 class on Rivals.com, announced his commitment to Duke at his high school Thursday afternoon.

The 6-foot-8 forward out of Simeon Career Academy in Chicago selected Duke over Florida, Michigan State and Stanford. Parker also had Brigham Young on his list.

“I just chose Duke because it’s the perfect fit for me,” Parker said. “Coach (Mike) Krzyzewski ... he’s just interested and he’s really put in a key hand in my development, even throughout high school.”

Florida also missed out on Montverde Academy’s Dakari Johnson, the No. 13 recruit in the 2013 class. The center trimmed his list of schools to Kentucky, Georgetown and Syracuse on Wednesday.

Even without Parker, Florida still has one of the top 2013 recruiting classes in the country. Point guard Kasey Hill and forward Chris Walker, both five-star recruits, signed letters of intent Nov. 14.

Walker, the nation’s No. 8 prospect, hails from Bonifay. Hill, who is the No. 9 on Rivals.com’s 2013 rankings, played with Gators guard Michael Frazier II at Montverde Academy in Clermont last year.

With Parker heading to Durham, N.C., next fall, Florida now shifts its focus to five-star Plano, Texas, forward Julius Randle, the No. 2 prospect of the 2013 class. The 6-foot-9 Randle has UF on his list with Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina State, Oklahoma and Texas.

Randle was a member of Florida coach Billy Donovan’s USA squad that won gold at the FIBA Americas U-18 Championships in June.  

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