Duke Basketball: An Open Letter To Grayson Allen

DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 24: Grayson Allen
DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 24: Grayson Allen /

As Duke prepares for their final regular season home game, we look back on the career of Duke’s lone senior Grayson Allen.

We start back in April of 2013 when the five-star recruit out of Providence School in Jacksonville, Flordia picked Duke to further his academic and basketball career.

It remained to be seen how much of Grayson Allen we would see that season since joining him at Duke would be Jahlil Okafor, Tyus Jones, and Justise Winslow.

Grayson exploded onto the scene when he stole the show at the McDonalds All-American Dunk Contest, dunking over Okafor in a Jay Williams jersey.

We didn’t see much of Allen until January 30, 2015, the game after Rasheed Sulimon got dismissed from the team.

Allen then received steady bench minutes until the Final Four in 2015, where the world was introduced to him quickly.

After a missed three-pointer from the left corner, the rebound bounced right back to Allen and he soared for a monstrous dunk against Michigan State.

From then Allen was on the fast track to stardom when he sparked the run over Wisconsin that sent Duke on their way to their 5th National Championship.

Allen poured in 16 points and earned a spot on the NCAA All-Tournament team.

Grayson Allen’s sophomore campaign was one for the ages. He averaged 21.64 points en route to a Sweet 16.

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Perhaps Allen’s best moment that season was his buzzer-beater against #7 Virginia.

In that 2015-16 season, Allen shot 46% from the floor and 41% from beyond the arc.

After this season Allen had to make a major decision, head to the NBA Draft or return to Duke.

Many of the “experts” said Allen should go pro, but his love for Duke was too great and he returned.

After another star-studded freshman class arrived in Durham, led by Jayson Tatum along with the emergence of sophomore Luke Kennard, Allen’s numbers dipped to averaging 14.47 points per game.

Allen shot 39.5% from the field and 36.5% from deep.

Grayson racked up another championship during this season, grabbing his first ever ACC Championship in historic fashion.

No team had ever won 4 games in 4 days to win the ACC Tournament, but Duke put an end to that statistic.

Duke rattled off wins against Clemson, Louisville, North Carolina, and Notre Dame.

After a disappointing second-round exit in the NCAA Tournament, Grayson was forced with another tough decision on whether he should return to Duke for his senior season.

His love and passion for Duke shined bright again as he chose to lead another star-studded freshman class as the only senior on the team.

Through 30 games Grayson has averaged 15.5 points per game on 42% shooting.

The evolution of Grayson’s game, maturity, and leadership at Duke has been amazing to see. He may go down as one of the most scrutinized players in college basketball, but will also be one of the best to dawn the blue and white.

As Grayson gets set to take the floor at Cameron Indoor Stadium one more time, we just have one message.

Thank you.

On behalf of the entire Duke fanbase, I’d like to say thank you, Grayson. Thank you for choosing Duke, thank you for your commitment to the program for 4 years, thank you for your leadership, and thank you for being Grayson.

Hopefully, we will get to see you play 10 more times in that Duke #3 jersey.