No. 2 Duke trying not to fall into classic South Beach trap against ‘Canes

Duke basketball center Vernon Carey Jr. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Duke basketball center Vernon Carey Jr. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

The Duke Basketball team is headed down to South Beach to face the Miami Hurricanes in a primetime ACC showdown and the Blue Devils are looking to avoid the Miami trap.

Surprisingly, the Duke Blue Devils have not lost a game away from Cameron Indoor Stadium yet.

No. 2 Duke only fell to Stephen F. Austin inside its own historic gym, but the Blue Devils will put its perfect road record to the test against the Miami Hurricanes in South Beach.

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Typically teams, professional or collegiate, struggle when playing in Miami due to the various distractions players and experience while down there.

However, this Duke team is different and it will be a homecoming for Blue Devil freshman Vernon Carey Jr. who is a native of Southwest Ranches, Florida and attended NSU University School in Fort Lauderdale.

Carey Jr.’s father, Vernon Carey Sr., played football for the ‘Canes from 2000 to 2003 and won the BCS National Championship in 2001.

Carey Sr. was then drafted by the Miami Dolphins and spent all of his eight NFL seasons with the team.

The youngest Carey is making a name for himself in Durham as a leading candidate in the ACC and National Player of the Year by averaging 17.9 points and 9.0 rebounds per game.

In a return from a two game absence with a foot sprain, Tre Jones was back to his old defensive self against Boston College and he will need to be up to that form on Saturday night against Chris Lykes.

Saturday night will also feature two former teammates, Duke’s Jack White and Miami’s Dejan Vasiljevic, who both represented their home country of Australia in this past summer’s World University Games.

As Miami deals with some injury trouble, look for Duke to try and push the tempo even more so as the Hurricanes seem to be at their best when the game is a low-scoring affair.

Duke is more talented and experienced and should prevail is yet another game away from Cameron Indoor Stadium, in its first road game of 2020 and in the new decade.

ESPN will televise the Blue Devils and Hurricanes at 8:00pm EST on Saturday, January 4.

PREDICTION: Duke 76, Miami 69