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Basketball season on hold for A&T freshman Duncan Powell
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Basketball season on hold for A&T freshman Duncan Powell

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GREENSBORO – It will be a little longer before the highest-rated recruit in N.C. A&T basketball history makes his collegiate debut.

Duncan Powell, a freshman forward, has been limited because of knee surgery last year and won’t be ready to play when the season begins, Coach Will Jones said.

Jones said Powell isn’t expected to be cleared for full-contact activity for another two or three weeks.

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Powell

The Aggies will begin the season at 7 p.m. Nov. 9 against UNCG at the Greensboro Coliseum.

The delay for Powell stems from surgery that involved cleaning bone spurs from a knee, Jones said. Thus, he didn’t play as a senior for Desoto High School in Texas after averaging 21 points per game as a junior.

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By then, the 6-foot-8 player had made headlines. Once a four-star recruit committed to Arkansas, Powell re-opened his recruiting and opted to sign with the Aggies.

Now, there’s a pause.

“If conference season is really when he gets it going, we’re fine with that,” Jones said.

A&T, which is in its first school year as a member of the Big South Conference, will play its first league game Jan. 5 against visiting Presbyterian.

Still, with the work that Powell has been able to do in practices, there are signs of good things to come.

“He looks really good. We can see it,” Jones said. “Once he hits the floor, we’ll be a whole lot better.”

The Aggies also will begin the season without guard Blake Harris. A transfer from N.C. State who has played one season with A&T, Harris had hand surgery this summer that will delay his season debut, Jones said.

Harris started nine games last season, averaging 8.6 points and rating second on the team with 32 assists.

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