A couple of weeks after receiving an offer from Clemson — and just four days after announcing his commitment to the Tigers last Saturday — Charleston (S.C.) First Baptist School running back Mikey Dukes made things official when he signed with Dabo Swinney’s program during Wednesday’s National Signing Day.
The in-state standout turned down offers from Syracuse, South Carolina, Virginia Tech, Virginia and Wake Forest, among others, to play for Clemson – his dream school.
Dukes will enroll this summer and told TCI that he can’t wait to start his career as a Tiger.
“It feels great man,” Dukes said after signing his National Letter of Intent on Wednesday. “I can’t wait to enroll and get to work.”
Dukes concluded his high school career with 8,762 rushing yards and 117 rushing touchdowns as well as 743 yards receiving and nine touchdown receptions.
As a senior, he carried 188 times for 2,030 yards (10.8 yards per attempt) with 29 touchdowns on the ground. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound playmaker won the Lonnie Robinson Memorial Award as SCISA Player of the Year and shared All-Lowcountry Player of the Year honors.
Dukes will join Travis Etienne, Tavien Feaster, Lyn-J Dixon and fellow running back signee Chez Mellusi in Clemson’s running back corps.
Swinney loves what Dukes, who also starred on the basketball court for First Baptist, brings to the table as an athlete and described his ability as “dynamic.”
“He’s really a guy that we’ve tracked for a long time,” Swinney said. “He’s been in our camp. Comes from a small school, but well-coached, winning program, and a guy that is dynamic. He can do a lot of things. He’s great in space, he’s got good ball skills, he’s a great basketball player and a young man that we think really fits what we’re looking for at that (running back) position. So, really big to get him into the fold.”
Dukes heard Swinney’s compliments loud and clear and appreciates the praise from his head coach. However, he isn’t letting it go to his head.
“It’s a blessing just to know a coach of his caliber is talking about me like that,” Dukes said. “It really just boosted my confidence. But I know I still have to come in and earn it.”
After leading First Baptist to SCISA AA titles in 2016 and 2017, Dukes helped the team to an 11-2 record and a state runner-up finish as a senior in 2018 in the school’s first season in AAA. He notched 335 rushing yards in his penultimate high school game, a win over Porter-Gaud in the SCISA AAA semifinals.
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