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Duke forward Jaemyn Brakefield to transfer to Ole Miss

Kermit Davis snags Ole Miss’ highest-rated player ever from the transfer portal.

NCAA Basketball: Duke at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Former four-star power forward and Duke signee Jaemyn Brakefield entered the transfer portal after one season in Durham that saw the Blue Devils finish 13-11 and exit the ACC Tournament due to COVID-19 precautions.

Ole Miss missed out on the Jackson, Miss. native the first time around, but Kermit Davis made sure he wasn’t going to whiff again. Now, the former Blue Devil joins Miami’s Nysier Brooks and Georgia’s Tye Fagan as the newest members of the Rebels’ 2021-2022 roster.

On Wednesday, Brakefield announced that he would be transferring to Ole Miss with five years to play four.

The former Jordan Brand Classic All-American averaged just 12.5 minutes per game for Mike Krzyzewski in 2020-2021, scoring 3.5 points and grabbing 2.5 rebounds per contest. But, Brakefield did shoot 41 percent from the field and had some impressive showings against some good opponents.

  • 11 points, 4 rebounds vs Michigan State
  • 10 points, 5 rebounds vs Notre Dame
  • 11 points, 5 rebounds, 4 blocks vs Virginia

The 6-foot-8, 216-pounder is an excellent addition to an Ole Miss front court that is working to replace KJ Buffen and Romello White after seemingly just missing out on the NCAA tournament this past season.

Brakefield’s time on the court for Duke was greatly affected by who was in front of him. Duke was led by forwards Matthew Hurt (32.6 minutes per game), Wendell Moore, Jr. (27.7 points per game) and Mark Williams (15.2 minutes per game), keeping Brakefield’s involvement to a minimum for most of the season.

That won’t be an issue in Oxford. Now that he is on the Ole Miss roster, he is immediately one of the best three players on the roster and will be counted on to contribute immediately in 2021.

In high school, the newest Rebel held offers from just about everyone. Alabama, Baylor, Boston College, Cal, Florida, Florida State, Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Houston, Illinois, Kansas, LSU, Louisville, Mississippi State, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Seton Hall, South Carolina, UCLA, UNLV, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, West Virginia, Western Kentucky and Xavier were those that tried to sign him.

Jaemyn led Huntington Prep in points scored, field goal percentage, and three-point percentage during the 2017-2018 season, including a team-high 34 points en route to a 22-9 record.

How does he fit in?

He’s got a very nonchalant way about him on the floor, but in a good way. Jaemyn has a unique skill set that is hard to find in a sturdy forward frame. He is more than comfortable with the ball in his hands and is more than capable of scoring the basketball.

He has a solid jumper from mid-range and he is even more of a threat putting the ball on the floor and getting to the rack, utilizing a quick first step to get past slower fours and fives. He can take a rebound on one end and can take it coast-to-coast and finish.

If you think back to previous Ole Miss players, to me he is in a Terrance Henry-like mold with his smooth Southpaw shooting stroke. He is a great ball handler for his size and has the ability to shoot from just about anywhere.

Brakefield most likely starts for Ole Miss in 2021 and has the potential to be a future NBA Draft pick, something Rebel fans haven’t experienced in 17 years when Justin Reed was taken in the second round.