Quinn Cook hopes to break out of a recent shooting slu

Duke at Miami Game Notes

8Duke vs. Miami

January 22, 2014 • 7:30 p.m.

Coral Gables, Fla. • BankUnited Center (7,972)

ESPN2 • Blue Devil IMG Sports Network • Compass Media Networks

The Opening Tip

• Duke travels to Coral Gables, Fla., to take on Miami in the BankUnited Center on Wednesday, Jan. 22, at 7:30 p.m. The game will air on ESPN2, the Blue Devil IMG Sports Network and Compass Media Networks.

• Duke is ranked No. 18 in the AP Poll and No. 18 in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll. Duke is 7-4 all-time when ranked No. 18 in the AP Poll.

• Saturday’s game will be Duke’s 237th consecutive as a ranked team. Duke is 196-40 (.831) during that run.

• Duke is looking for its first ACC road win of the season after dropping previous away games at Notre Dame (79-77) and Clemson (72-59). Duke is 3-4 away from Cameron Indoor Stadium this season.

• Duke routed NC State 95-60 Saturday for the Blue Devils’ fifth game scoring at least 90 points this season. Duke leads the ACC and ranks 19th nationally with 82.6 points per game.

The Last Time Out

• Jabari Parker scored 23 points and was one of five Blue Devils in double figures as Duke handled NC State, 95-60, Saturday at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

• Parker hit 7-of-14 shots from the field and both three-point attempts en route to his 11th 20-point game of the season.

• Duke scored 33 points off turnovers, forcing the Wolfpack into 21 giveaways, including 14 Duke steals. The 33 points off turnovers were a season-high for the Blue Devils.

• Rasheed Sulaimon scored 13 points, Andre Dawkins and Rodney Hood scored 11 and Quinn Cook added 10 as Duke had five players score in double figures for the fifth time this season.

• Former President George H.W. Bush was in attendance for the game to honor head coach Mike Krzyzewski for his commitment and leadership in working toward eliminating cancer as a public health threat.

By The Numbers

• Coach K is two wins shy of becoming the second coach in NCAA Division I history to record 900 wins at one school. Already the NCAA Division I

all-time leader with 971 wins, he trails only Syracuse’s Jim Boeheim (936) for the most wins at one school.

• Duke has topped 90 points five times this season for the program’s most 90-point games since the 2010-11 team reached that plateau six times. Duke is 5-0 this season and 273-8 under Mike Krzyzewski when scoring 90 points.

• Duke has lost back-to-back road games to the same ACC opponent just once since the 2003-04 season when Wake Forest defeated the Blue Devils in back-to-back meetings at Lawrence Joel Coliseum on Feb. 17, 2008 (86-73) and Jan. 28, 2009 (68-70). Duke fell, 90-63, to Miami in the last meeting at BankUnited Center on Jan. 23, 2013.

• Rodney Hood leads the ACC in field goal percentage (.517 – 107-of-207) and three-point field goal percentage (.457 – 37-of-81). Hood is the only player in the country to lead his conference in both of those categories.

• Hood has hit a three-pointer in 15 consecutive games and has at least one trey in 17 of 18 games this season.

• Duke has at least one 20-point scorer in 17 of 18 games this season. Jabari Parker has a team-high 11 20-point games, followed by Rodney Hood (8, plus one 30-point game), Quinn Cook (3), Rasheed Sulaimon (2) and Andre Dawkins (1).

• Parker has scored 20 or more points 11 times this season, which is tied for the most 20-point games by a Duke freshman, matching the mark set by Gene Banks in 1977-78.

• Reigning ACC Player of the Week Rasheed Sulaimon is Duke’s leading scorer off the bench, averaging 10.4 points per game when not in the starting lineup. Six of his seven double-figure scoring games this season have come from the bench.

• Amile Jefferson is third in ACC play with 9.6 rebounds per game. He has led the team in rebounds in four of Duke’s five league games with a pair of double-figure efforts. Jefferson recorded a career-best 15 boards versus Virginia.

• Quinn Cook has a 3.03:1 assist-to-turnover ratio and is averaging an ACC-leading 5.7 assists per game. His 3.03:1 assist-to-turnover ratio is on pace to tie the school record set by Steve Wojciechowski in 1996-97.

Lance Images

N.C. State at Duke Preview

ACC OP BB 001The Duke Blue Devils take to the hardwood tomorrow afternoon hoping to advance their ACC record to 3-2 with a win over cross town rival N.C. State.

Basketball is a curious thing. For instance a tough and hot UVA team which Duke defeated got blown out at Tennessee, while the Wolfpack hold a win over the Vols on the same court. The Pack also defeated Notre Dame on the road which Duke was unable to do. Let’s face it though, the Pack faced the Irish right after their win over Duke, so they caught them fat and happy.

What am I getting at here? Well, on a given day, they do show up and they’ve done this more often than not on the road.

But the Pack has struggled of late losing four out of their last six contests which translates to a 11-6 overall record. This includes a heart breaking loss to Wake Forest by a digit.

That has most folks seemingly writing the Packs season off and that sometimes makes for a dangerous team. And we know that the Pack like all others are likely to play at their best against the team with “Duke,” on the jersey.

The Pack are led by Tony Warren, one of the ACC’s top scorers. I told anybody who would listen that this kid could score the ball while covering the AAU circuit and that he’d be a much better player than Rodney Purvis who has since transferred from Raleigh.

Warren can more or less score from anywhere on the court and he will likely be the point of emphasis for the Duke defense. Another player capable of big games is Anthony Barber who can break a defense down on the drive. But Barber has been inconsistent with a sometimes terrible shot selection. Still, he is just the kind of player who knows there will be a spotlight on this game and he could rise to the occasion.

Both the Pack and Blue Devils have struggled on the boards this season, but this will be a stat line to watch. Another thing is how will a week lay off effect the Blue Devils at the start of the game.

I expect Duke will defend their home court and that they’ll wear down the Wolfpack over the course of the game to come away with a win.

It seems that this Duke is learning to bring consistent effort tot he court and play complete games and with each victory the confidence builds for a team that is very young by Duke standards.

Don’t look for the same platoon rotation though, for Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski is likely to settle on the players he feels most comfortable with until the game is in hand. That is partially due to the rest this team will have coming in.

The Wolfpack come into this game with their back against the wall and this sometimes makes for a tough team effort. But Duke has had early season adversity as well and they will not make for an easy win in Cameron.

Coach K

Master moves nothing new for Coach K

Coach Kcoach k familycoach k PlympicsAPTOPIX NCAA Final Four Butler Duke Basketballcoach k 1BDN Photo

 As the buzzer sounded on Monday evening, the Duke Blue Devils celebrated happily after their win over Virginia.  It wasn’t easy mind you, but who thought it would be over a pesky and hot Cavaliers team?

Still, this Duke team came together more than some might realize and they did so in a way that could be a starting point moving forward. It was no surprise to see the Captain, Mike Krzyzewski take the blame for his teams recent play, where they came into the game 1-2 in the ACC.

It was on the day after the Christmas holidays that his brother, whom he’s extremely close to passed in a most untimely and unexpected way.

Unlike many folks, it is not as easy for Krzyzewski to have taken time off during a tragic moment in that the Duke Basketball machine is a college basketball behemoth which is driven to success by the all time wins leader in NCAA Basketball history.

He was visibly shaken before the game against Eastern Michigan, mere hours after he received the disturbing news and that wasn’t easy to see.

Anyhow, it was certainly not my place to have mentioned his brothers passing as fans wondered aloud later what had gotten into their team.

Kryzyzewski is a private person with concern to family like many of us are, so all I could do is send a prayer his way and allow him to mention the news in his own time.

A few days later it came out in an obituary form in the Chicago paper and then it became public.  But the last thing the family seemed to want was a circus atmosphere of well wishers when he probably needed to work through things on his own.

Working through things is something Coach Krzyzewski is pretty good at per history and in time he will come to grips with the hole which currently resides in his heart.

And he’ll work things out on the court as well. Krzyzewski took the heat off his team with his post game comments and this allows them to start fresh.  It was clear that Krzyzewski had implemented another master plan for a win Monday evening while instilling confidence at the same time.

He knew his team was tired and mentioned this prominently in the post game, taking the blame for not substituting properly as he dealt with difficult personal issues.

So the strategy was to keep five fresh players in at all times and for the first time in a while, he would platoon his players and they responded wonderfully. Krzyzewski likely knew his teams confidence was shaken against Clemson, so he involved all in an effort to turn their fortunes around.

It may sound unusual to say that Krzyzewski is underrated as a tactician, but I think it goes underappreciated once some of his moves happen. If you go back and look at the history of Duke Basketball, he’s made several key moves and won when the media and fans thought his team was doomed to swoon.

This is the guy who plugged a football player in Reggie Love in the middle before a UNC game where Duke won easily over their rival. Also, in 2001, he flipped Chris Duhon into the backcourt with about ten games left in the season, sending current assistant coach Nate James to the bench as the sixth man and both flourished in their roles and energized the team.

How about the time when he inserted Jordan Davidson into the starting lineup against Chris Paul.  Davidson, a walk on played just a few minutes but he got the Crazies and the team pumped out of their heads.

Most recently, during his last NCAA title run, the moves were too numerous to mention.

Current assistant Jon Scheyer had been inserted into the PG spot the year before late in the season as was an athletic Elliot Williams on the wing.  But Williams unexpectedly transferred to Memphis at the midnight hour the following season.

Duke adjusted.  And nobody picked them to win it all.  In fact, they were considered un-athletic and too slow, but enter Brian Zoubek and a slower pace and a crystal trophy would ensue.

It would take ten thousand or more words to accurately document Krzyewski’s moves but you get the general picture. Moving forward, I doubt we’ll see the platoon system as much, but there will be other moves made for they always are.

The crazy thing is that move back to a shorter bench will be questioned, just like playing time is for certain players.  Fans generally see all the on ball stuff but fail to watch players off ball or where players are on defense.  After all, this is the age of ESPN ready players where people look for the three ball or the dunk to wow them ignoring the many other aspects of the game.

It never fails to amaze me that some will question a coach in any way with his credentials with concern to strategy.  This man and his staff see the players on a daily basis and not a soul catches practice or is aware of any kind of external issue with players be it injuries or private matters.

If anybody knows how to win, it is Mike Krzyzewski and it is probably easier for me to overlook a so-called swoon in that I have followed the program for a long time and have witnessed crazy success.

In that time, I have seen Coach K make constant moves and most of them work out.

There will be more ebbs and flows as the season unfolds, but don’t be surprised if Duke doesn’t once again make a deep run when it counts.

“I’m human,” stated Mike Krzyzewski with concern to mourning the loss of his brother.  Well, you have had some not typical human success at Duke, Coach.  And perhaps you will have to find it in your heart to forgive those who think you are made of steel.

Amile Jefferson was a beast tonight – Coach K

Amile Jefferson sat down with BDN's Andre Slater in Fort Wayne Indiana for an in depth interview with one of the nations top prospects - BDN PhotoHuge effort from Amile Jefferson tonight, whom Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski called a beast in his post game presser. Jefferson grabbed 15 boards, with three of them coming during a key stretch. One where he bounded the ball out to Sulaimon for a three and then two consecutive as UVA was trying to tie the game. Jefferson also scored 10 points for a double-double on the night. Check out what Jefferson had to say to Blue Devil Nation post game –