This ranking is of the 100 Blue Devils most responsible for the trove of memories ever since a fearless 33-year-old assumed the Duke basketball throne in 1980.
NOTE: Ball Durham will continue to update this ranking following each Duke basketball season until Mike Krzyzewski retires. In other words, those current players who are not on this list but should be — or should now rank higher — will be in April (be patient, Vernon Carey Jr., for 2020 updates are on the way).
The ideal person to rank the 100 greatest Duke basketball players across the Mike Krzyzewski era is, well, Mike Krzyzewski — won't happen.
So let's start with what we know: the ranking requires triple-digit entries in order to include all the stars and significant role players who have contributed to any of the legend's 1,132 wins (five national championships, 12 final fours, and 15 ACC Tournament titles).
But how do we compare a Quinn Cook to a Cherokee Parks or to any other Blue Devil from the tail end of Jimmy Carter's presidency through last season?
We do so by taking into account stats, team success, games played, and intangibles. We start here at No. 100 and don't stop until we reach the best Blue Devil of all...
- 3.9 points per game, 3.8 rebounds per game, 0.3 assists per game, 0.3 steals per game, 0.7 blocks per game
- 57.7 field goal percentage, never took a 3-pointer, 50.0 free throw percentage
- ACC TOURNAMENT TITLES: One (2017)
- FINAL FOUR APPEARANCES: None
- NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS: None
Harry Giles didn't choose to go from being the No. 1 player in the 2016 class as a high school sophomore to a guy who had torn both his ACL's and one of his MCL's by the time he enrolled at Duke.
But the 6-foot-10, 240-pound North Carolina native did choose to make the best of the situation. And his best gift to Duke basketball fans from his lone college season was that he played at his best during two comeback wins over North Carolina. Job well done.