Coach K Near Heights Unseen by Anyone

Not one college basketball coach has won 1,123 games: not men’s, not women’s, not D-I, not D-II, and not even D-III. The record, as of now being 1,122, isn’t actually held by Coach K yet: Harry Statham, who retired last year from Division II’s McKendree University, just finished off a run of half a century. Coach K win “Kount” stands at 1,121– one behind Statham. Now, with a win tonight and a win at home vs. NC State would make Coach Mike Krzyzewski the winningest college coach of all time.

Not much more you can say there except “Wow”.

Bleed blue. Catch the Duke-Louisville game at 9pm tonight.

Duke Completes Sweep of UVA, 81-71

I guarantee you that if you would’ve approached anybody with the slightest idea about college basketball before 7pm today saying that Duke would defeat Virginia in Charlottesville by shooting 61.9% from beyond the arc while being generally, while not completely, controlled in the paint, they probably would’ve said that you’re crazy. That’s the literally opposite of every other game. But it happened.

Duke pulled out the victory to complete a sweep of the Virginia Cavaliers at John Paul Jones Arena, 81-71. RJ Barrett had 26 points, Zion Williamson had 18, Cam Reddish had 17, and Tre Jones had 15 to lead the Blue Devils to victory. ESPN called it “[the] latest installment of ‘Freshmen Gone Wild'”, as the freshmen scored over 91% of the points that Duke scored in total (81). Oh, and by the way, yes, we did score 81. The Virginia game plan was visible from the start: suffocate the lane, force outside shots. It went perfectly, except for one little hitch: we couldn’t miss if we tried. RJ Barrett started it off with a really well placed three-pointer, Zion got a steal and a dunk, RJ sunk one from deep again and you could tell the direction that this one was going in.

UVA fought hard but every single time that they came within scratching distance, somebody made a big play that put out the fire. Duke had a consistent 10-to-12 point lead throughout the whole game except for the end of the first half when UVA cut it to 4, but other than that it was almost always a lead of eight or more. It wasn’t complete dominance, but it was in a way.

The two games that UVA has played against Duke have been night and day from their other opponents. In other games, opponents have averaged around 30% shooting field goals average and around 50 points. Duke has averaged around 50% and over 75 points. We have it figured out for the ‘Hoos, and Virginia cannot say the same about us.

You are likely to already have known about this play: Zion Williamson, despite a “quiet” night (not really, but he didn’t score 30), is all over SportsCenter again with this mind-boggling block.

This is not Photoshop.

How. The. Heck. Do. You. Do. That.

Especially when you’re 280 pounds!

Bleed blue. One down, but still, we have Louisville on Tuesday, State on Saturday, then the blue bloods meet in Cameron.

Duke Listed #1 Overall in Early Committee Release

As March approaches, the Selection Committee released the top 16 spots s they would be if the Madness were to begin today. The contest for the top spot was limited to between Duke and Tennessee and as well as the Volunteers have played of late (17-game win streak), based on what we suspect was probably the incredible number of high quality wins that Duke has picked up throughout the season (Virginia, Kentucky, Auburn, Texas Tech), Duke is currently #1 overall. That would put us in Washington, D.C, for the first round and the current bracket has Michigan the #2 seed in our bracket, as well as Marquette and Iowa State at #3 and #4, respectively.

This is likely to change but would be relatively good path for the Blue Devils. Rankings are hardly important in March, though, and the grit necessary will be something that Duke will need to learn very, very quickly.

Duke. Virginia. Now. Bleed blue.

Duke Cruises by Boston College, 80-55

Despite many struggles in the first half, Duke used its hot second half to cruise by BC in Cameron, 80-55. Cam Reddish had his best game with 24 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals, while Zion Williamson had a double-double with 16 points and 17 rebounds. RJ Barrett had 19 points, 5 rebounds, and a block.

The first half was “dead”, as Coach K put it. Put that together with a bad overall shooting half of the game at 1-15 from distance and you get a 2-point BC lead going into the half. A slight change in momentum, however– Cam’s steal and finish to end the half– seemed to make all the difference (as well as whatever Coach K is saying to them in the locker room). Cam came out immediately and hit a jumper to tie it, then RJ hit three free throws, and Cam hit a 3 and you could tell that it wouldn’t last much longer.

I’m not going to say too much on the missed Zion dunk because to be honest I don’t really care. He had one that looked like it’d be one for the ages and just didn’t land it quite correctly. He did, however, have a double-double. He helped the team win and that’s all that is important to me.

Bleed blue. The Duke-UVA rematch is upon us. You know that we’re good when Virginia basketball is an ESPN “Sonic Blockbuster”.

Game Notes: vs. Boston College

Duke faces yet another challenger that won’t bring back great memories for those of us around last year: the top-ranked Blue Devils were toppled by the Eagles in a shocking upset. It wasn’t a random thing: we had our flaws but Boston College shot miraculously well especially from range. This year, though, is a different story. BC does not return Jerome Robinson, who was easily the leader throughout the season and in the game with 24 points at BCV, but they do still have both Jordan Chatman and Ky Bowman, who combined for 52 points last year.

However, again, this is not the same Duke team coming into this game. The 2017-2018 Blue Devils were not the most profound defensive team at the time of the loss (we still love you guys, but let’s be honest). Different story this time: we’re currently ranked fourth in the country in defensive efficiency as well as tenth in the country in offensive efficiency. With those two statistics in mind as well as the atmosphere that is Cameron Indoor Stadium, always a difference maker, BC faces a challenge much different than last year.

Also, there happen to be these two guys named Zion Williamson and RJ Barrett. Not that they’ll be a factor or anything.

Game Notes

Boston College Eagles at Duke Blue Devils

Date: Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Time: 7:00 PM ET

Venue: Cameron Indoor Stadium, Durham, NC

TV: ESPN

Radio: Blue Devil IMG Sports Network

Bleed blue.

Tre Jones Update and Ga. Tech

Tre Jones, after suffering an AC Joint Separation against Syracuse closing on two weeks ago, has been upgraded to “probable” for today’s matchup with Georgia Tech. As Duke fans we’re certainly excited to get him back, but need it be so soon? The last thing we need is a re-aggravated injury. A win against one of the best teams in the country in Virginia proves that we can survive without him if necessary and the offense has been a lot more fluid– when Tre was gone all of a sudden at Syracuse, I think it was a bit of a shock. It’s a home game in which Duke is -22.5. To be totally honest, I don’t really want him to come back now but I’m trusting the medical staff on this one.

Georgia Tech has played some good defense this year, but one of their main weaknesses against Duke will be size and talent. Talent is a problem for most teams but Georgia Tech plays small. However, it’s an area of focus for the Blue Devils as well– much like Pittsburgh, Georgia Tech uses its guards to get fouls in the interior. Jose Alvarado is much like Pittsburgh’s Trey McGowens and Xavier Johnson, getting the to the line a lot with drives. Duke, however, did an excellent job of stopping that and playing hands-up defense, as neither scored a point from the line. Georgia Tech has, however, been competitive with good teams and even beaten Syracuse (a surprising manhandling of the 2-3 zone). They’re good on both ends of the court. This is no down game.

Here are the game notes:

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Duke Blue Devils

Time: 12:00pm

Date: Saturday, January 26, 2019

Venue: Cameron Indoor Stadium, Durham, NC

TV: ACC Network

Radio: Blue Devil IMG Sports Network

Stream: WatchESPN

Bleed blue.