Zion Williamson may have started a new trend in the Duke basketball world

Duke basketball forward Zion Williamson (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Duke basketball forward Zion Williamson (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /

Jersey numbers are very important in the Duke basketball world, and Zion Williamson may have started a new trend with his now famous No. 1 uniform.

Many Duke basketball fans get excited around the idea of jersey numbers for their favorite Blue Devils.

The most popular numbers that are still currently in the rotation, and not retired, are No. 2 (Nolan Smith, Quinn Cook), No. 3 (Grayson Allen, Tre Jones), and No. 5 (Tyus Jones, RJ Barrett).

Not to mention other Duke greats have worn these numbers, and there are tons of other numbers than can be discussed, but ‘one’ number is becoming increasingly more popular thanks to ‘one’ special star.

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The No. 1 jersey first burst on the scene thanks to Kyrie Irving, but the lack of time the future NBA All-Star saw in Durham due to injuries hampered what could have been a special season for Irving and the defending National Champion Blue Devils.

Jabari Parker then took the No. 1 jersey in the 2014 season, and while Parker had one of the best seasons as a Duke freshman to date, the failure Duke suffered in the NCAA Tournament darkens the cloud over his college career.

Then came along a 6-foot-6, 285-pound superhuman who put the Duke No. 1 jersey back on the map in 2019.

Zion Williamson‘s jerseys flew off racks and websites and packed every arena the phenom stepped in.

Despite falling short in the Elite Eight, Williamson was the consensus National Player of Year and resulted in being the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft by the New Orleans Pelicans, while keeping the same jersey number he wore in college.

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One season after the Williamson hype still lingered in Cameron Indoor Stadium, Vernon Carey Jr. took on the challenge of donning ‘Zion’s number’ and thrived under that spotlight en route to being named as the National Freshman of the Year and a likely First Round pick in the 2020 NBA Draft.

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That leads us into the 2020-21 season, and as the Duke social media accounts confirmed the jersey numbers of the incoming freshmen, star Jalen Johnson will bear the pressure that now comes with the No. 1 jersey, as he previously mentioned he was going to wear on his Instagram page.

For two straight years, the National Freshman of the Year was wearing the Duke No. 1 jersey and once was the National Player of the Year, and now we wait to see what year three will bring.

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No pressure, Jalen, we know you are itching to follow in those footsteps to carry on the legacy of the No. 1 jersey.