Tag Archives: Coach K

Coach K and company set to visit Kenny Boynton Jr.

[private]The Duke Men's Basketball staff will be more than just a little busy this week. On the first day that they can be back out on the road, which is tomorrow evening, Coach K and company will have an in home with Kenny Boynton Jr. and his family.

Boynton is one of the nations top guards, arguably the best in the class of 2009. Duke has been recruiting him consistently for a long time. He reminds most Blue Devil faithful of Jason Williams. Williams won a national title, was named national POY which led to him being a lottery pick in the NBA draft. Like Boynton, Williams was a offensive scoring machine that could play both guard spots, but he settled in on the point at Duke where he learned the trade from Coach K.

Long the buzz of various basketball crazy Duke message boards, Boynton is a prospect that fans dearly want to see rock Cameron. There is a heated battle for his services and he's maintained all along that he would take his five official visits.

Florida has really turned it up for Boynton, attempting to make a move while Krzyzewski was coaching Team USA to the Gold Medal. Boyntons friend, Eloy Vargas is already a Gator and he is of course from the sunshine state like his friend.

If Boynton were to choose Duke he would remain in the constant media spotlight of a team which has every game televised and one which is in the basketball fanatical ACC. He could very well be the focus of any school he chooses in a list that includes USC, Memphis, Georgia Tech and Texas along with Duke and Florida.

Florida will come in the night after the Duke staff, but you can bet that there will be a lot to think about in the Boynton household. While UF has a wonderful basketball program, they sometimes play second fiddle to Gator Football. Still, the local allure might be as attractive as the national spotlight and playing for a living legend in Coach K.

In the end, the decision should come down to where can he better prepare for his goal of the NBA and which school will continue to support him once he is in the league. College will be nothing more than a temporary stop for the talented Boynton but his choice will go a long ways in defining him as a future player.

Make no mistake that the Blue Devils covet and care about young Boynton. They want him to be a part of what looks to be a very talented team. Duke will always compete for national prominence, but the addition of Boynton would be another step towards a national championship.

The staff has layed it on the line and Blue Devil fans have followed his every AAU move. Now all they can hope for is that Boynton sees the golden opportunity available for him in Durham.

Blue Devil Nation Premium has covered Kenny Boynton from the very start and you can follow the process even closer by becoming a member. You can subscribe here. We will be moving to our new home very soon![/private]

Game Week – Coach Cutcliffe talks of a new beginning and more

[private]The Blue Devil Nation was once again on hand after this mornings practice and we chatted briefly with Coach Cutcliffe. This was the last time the media could talk to him during opening game week. All of the question were asked by Brian Strickland of the Herald Sun and myself.

It's just over fifty hours before kickoff on Saturday. What are your feelings at this time?

I feel like we're prepared. Today's practice looked that way. I thought defensively, offensively and the kicking game had people where they were supposed to be and knew what to do and were pretty crisp and focused. This is your dress rehearsal every week on Thursday and you find out a lot about your team. It's the first time they've seen the way we do things, so I was pleased with it for the most part.

Do you get nervous before the games?

Not really. I get butterflies like anybody does on occasion from the excitement. I wouldn't call it nervousness. There's too many things to do to be nervous with last minute things going on. I enjoy game day and try to enjoy that experience and I want the players to enjoy it. We're pretty intense as you guys know that are around here during the week. On game day, I am going to be intense, but if they're not ready after this, it's not their fault, it's mine.

Coach, you've been doing a lot of promotion in the off season. Do you think that's been a success?

Absolutely! I think we'll see that Saturday night. I think we'll see more than a full house. I don't say that to keep people from coming, but to encourage them to come for I think it's going to be mpore fun than they've had in Wallace Wade Stadium in a long time.

Coach K had some nice things to say about the program during his press conference yesterday. Can you give me a brief comment about that?

Certainly! I appreciate his support from the start, the very beginning. Here's a guy bringing home the Gold and he sets his press conference on Wednesday. I know he's still tired and just to make the comment that he want's the press conference out of the way and everything to be focused on the football team is just unbelievable. It doesn't surprise because of who he is. I sat and kind of measured him up during the press conference ... here's a guy who is a graduate of West Point who played for the winningest coach of all time. He's won over 800 games himself, three national titles and now Olympic Gold. I'm just kind of looking at him saying, "whats next?"

Can you talk about OL Kyle Hill and what he's done?

He's done a really nice job to come out and start in his first game as an offensive lineman. He takes a lot of pride and he is athletic. I think it gives us one of the most athletic sides of the line with him and Cameron Goldberg. I like athletes, you guys know that. Neither one of them have an ounce on them. I look forward to seeing Kyle compete. I'm sure he'll make some mistakes, but if you are going to make them, do it is full speed which is one of my motto's.

You will be back on the field as a head coach this weekend which is something you wanted to get back to ...

I'm not going to be arrogant, but I will tell you that I feel very natural doing that. It's what I prefer. When I have coached as an offensive coordinator, I'm the head coach of that offensive team and I'm focused. From a competing (as an OC) standpoint, we had a plan from the get go. I mean no disrespect to the coaches I've coached for, but (being in charge) is my nature and I'm very, very comfortable around this staff. I look forward to really going out and competing with them.

We've had quite a bit of rain of late. How might that paly into field conditions?

The field will drain. It's a sand based field and I think it'll be fine. I'm not sure what's coming up, but we might have a couple of thunder busters between now and the game. We all surfed in here yesterday. It was the largest amount of water I've ever dealt with in a practice situation. I really don't care what the fields like. If we play well and take care of the football and do the things we've got to do I will like watching our team compete.

An aside, the field was being painted as I left and the North Carolina sunshine started to burst between the clouds. The field looked to be in good shape. It's been a crazy week of coverage where this site has been burning the candle at both ends. Next week should allow us to get back to more writing, instead of the interview formats we've adopted for times sake. Lastly, wear blue and turnout foe the game on Saturday evening. I've been tipped off about some new experiences that should please Duke fans. You will want to get into the stadium early to catch the full effect.[/private]

Gold Medal Winning Coach Mike Krzyzewski Returns Home

[private]

Just minutes after placing his feet on American soil, Mike Krzyzewski addressed a throng of media members and adoring fans at RDU International Airport. Coach K is still immersing himself in the Olympic experience and will continue to do so as the media requests are sure to come in from well, everywhere.

That's the life of the legendary college coach who melded together NBA stars into a cohesive unit which of course made all things golden. While the Chinese media gravitated towards players like LeBron James and Kobe Bryant making them darlings, Coach K is sure to get lots of love in the coming days.

Coach K was flanked by family, in both blood and Duke Blue brotherhood. As he took to the podium, assistant coaches Steve Wojciechowski, Chris Collins and head of basketball operations Chris Spatola stood at attention behind their captain with the American flag as the backdrop. His wife Mickie, daughters and their children were just to his right.

In typical Krzyzewski style, he first commented about the players. "The players were amazing, both on the court and off. They represented us so very well." He then gave props to Spain for a competitive game. At that point chants of USA, USA, USA, USA could be heard ringing in the corridors of the airport.

He didn't stop with his praise and commended China on being a good host before joking, "If they had elections there which they don't, and Kobe was a write in, Kobe might win." This brought laughter from the crowd and allowed his staff to crack a smile in the background. He continued on Kobe, "Thank goodness he took over at the end of the game."

He then showed graciousness towards his staff, including new Stanford coach Johhny Dawkins saying they worked tirelessly with no recognition. You can bet that the work proved worthy for each and will look fabulous on their resumes. "It's definitely the best basketball experience I've been involved with," said Duke assistant Chris Collins.

Knowing Coach K, he was probably already mapping out recruiting plans on the flight. He was quick to quip with a smile, " It's so good now to just be the Duke Coach," which brought about applause from Iron Duke Members and fans alike. He then said, "It's really good being the Duke coach having won the Olympics."

"You don't realize how proud you are to be an American until you are in those settings and you're representing your country, said Kryzyzewski. He then reflected on the awesome accomplishment of winning the Gold Medal, " During the National Anthem before the Gold Medal game, we are all standing there just mouthing the words and all of a sudden you get emotional. You start crying and say "Boy," I wish my Mom and Dad were here ... and how the heck are you this lucky to be representing the greatest country in the world in this fantastic sport."

Well Coach! Duke fans get a bit emotional too. We wonder how the heck we are so lucky for you to represent the greatest program in the world and be our coach 24/7. Congratulations Coach! You've made us all proud.

Note - The Blue Devil Nation will have the Q & A session with Coach K up tomorrow, so please check back that and Coach Cutcliffe addressing the media for the home opener.[/private]

Coach K helped America, Duke recruiting and World Basketball

[private]

They say a picture is worth a thousand words.  Well, this is but one of many pictures of Coach K that will live on in time.  Coach K further cemented his name into the history books in leading Team USA to the Gold Medal, an accomplishment few can claim.  If you think Coach is satisfied with three national championships and his latest accomplishment, think again.  His staff will be hard at work on the recruiting front trying to help secure the combination of players which will be a part of the fourth or maybe even fifth title by the time they time they arrive.

No matter, how you spin the effect of the Gold Medal on Duke Basketball, there is no denying that it helps in many ways.  During the upcoming season, announcers will all allude to Coach K and his Olympic success.  Current players like Gerald Henderson and Kyle Singler will benefit from his experiences and the nations spotlight will be cast no matter where the Blue Devils play.

What about recruiting?  Duke is in a hotly contested battle for Kenny Boynton in the class of 2009.  Do you think seeing Coach K handle super talented guards like Dwayne Wade and Chris Paul made an impression?  Do you think any of the five kids offered in 2010 want to be a part of something special?  Would they like to attend a school where they will play for a living legend and have all their games televised?

While nobody can answer these questions for sure, one has to think that with Coach K now turning his sole focus on Duke that there will be a lot of kids wanting to play for the man who has handled the best players in America and has produced either the first or second most NBA players, depending on where you look, than any other coach in America.

Yep!  Coach K had this talented bunch of NBA stars buy into teamwork for the greater good.  And we all know that selfless play produces winners.  Believe me, all these players are winners, having endorsements waiting in multiple countries and more importantly, representing what's best about America!

As Duke fans or Americans, we should be proud of what Coach K had done for the United States, Duke and world basketball.  Thanks to this years edition of Team USA, millions of fans were born making basketball a household name.  Quite simply, Coach K was as selfless as his players, serving as an ambassador of basketball instead of shirking the duties to concentrate on Duke alone.

In the end, we learned a lot about teamwork and as Duke fans we are fortunate to have a legend strolling the sidelines of Cameron for years to come.[/private]

Gold! Coach K led Team USA trips Spain to sweep Beijing

[private]

Four years after having their mantle of invincibility trashed with a bronze bust in Athens, the USA Redeem Team won back the gold medal with a 118-107 over Spain on Sunday. But not without having to work for it in the final game of the Olympic tournament.

Dwayne Wade score 27 points, Kobe Bryant 20 and LeBron James 14, yet the Americans were still in the fight of the Games when Rudy Fernandez hit his fifth 3-pointer to pull Spain to within 91-89 with 8:13 left in the game.

But Bryant hit a runner, Deron Williams dropped in a 3-pointer from the left corner and Dwight Howard took a feed from Bryant and slammed it home and the U.S. was able to keep enough of a cushion the rest of the way.

Spain, the reigning world champion, was led by Fernandez with 22 points and Pau Gasol with 21. Team USA finished with a perfect 8-0 record and wrapped up the final gold medal away in the 2008 Olympics.

Box Score


Coach K - This was easy. All these guys committed to Jerry Colangelo three years ago and they said they want to be part of a team. And Jerry said we’re going to have one collective ego but we wanted you to bring all your egos because that’s how you get better. We have not had one second of problem as a coaching staff with our team. It’s been the greatest experience of my life and the lives of the other coaches."

"It’s exhilaration. If we didn’t have the three years together, we wouldn’t have won this game because the three years gave us character to beat a great team that had great character in Spain. It was one of the great games in international basketball history. To win a game like that is the best."

LeBron James -"On behalf of the players, first of all, we want to give respect where respect is due to the Spain team. They were unbelievable. Just like Coach said, we had a game plan and they countered our game plan by making some incredible plays. Every possession counted tonight for all 40 minutes … every possession counted. You couldn’t take one possession off, one second off. If it wasn’t for the determination and the will power we have in each other, we wouldn’t have pulled through and got this win."

K is for knowledge

K builds golden legacy

Same old USA-just better_

Chavez on the long journey

Resume Building

Super celeb Kobe Bryant

Wade and Bryant talk win and K

[/private]

USA cruises past Argentina – Gold Medal awaits K and company

[private]Team USA went to 7-0 today by defeating Argentina 101-81.  The Coach K led bunch has just one game to go and a win brings the Gold Medal back to the United States.  Spain awaits the "Redeem Team," on Sunday. Carmelo Anthony scored a team high 21 points and played with intensity throughout the contest.  LeBron James chipped in with 15 while star NBA guards, Paul and Wade had 12 apiece.  Needless to say Duke fans and Americans alike are proud of the effort.  Coach K has shown the world that he can take the best of the best and have them play together for the greater good.  And don't think for one minute that endorsements galore don't await each and every player.

Box Score Link[/private]