Duke basketball suffers first postponement, more potentially looming

Duke basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports)
Duke basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Duke basketball program will not play Gardner-Webb on Wednesday, November 25.

And away we go with the 2020-21 college basketball season as the Duke basketball program has suffered its first postponement because of COVID-19.

In a press release on Monday afternoon, it was announced that a member of the Gardner-Webb program had tested positive for the novel coronavirus and that its matchup with the Blue Devils has been postponed.

Duke was scheduled to open its season at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Wednesday, November 25 at 8:00pm EST.

However, the Blue Devils will now have to wait until Saturday, November 28 to open the season in Durham against Coppin State at 2:00pm EST (ACC Network).

There has not been a positive COVID-19 test within Mike Krzyzewski‘s program to date, and the diligence of teams trying not to play games with potentially sick or positive cases in the program will be critical to the length of the season.

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As the NCAA has not allowed preseason exhibitions, Duke has conducted at least three intrasquad scrimmages this offseason, and perhaps one more scrimmage will now be conducted with a larger gap in between games.

How Duke basketball moves on from this point

Duke entered the Associated Press Top-25 Preseason Poll at No. 9 as the Blue Devils return players such as Wendell Moore, Matthew Hurt, and Jordan Goldwire while bringing in yet another star-studded freshman class led by Jalen Johnson.

Prior to the season, the NCAA set guidelines that teams only have to play 13 games to be eligible for the 2021 NCAA Tournament, but reports have surfaced that the NCAA is looking into making that rule 12 regular season games and one conference tournament game.

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Another potential postponement could await the Blue Devils in December as Bellarmine announced there is a positive test in its program and that its first three scheduled games are postponed, pushing its season opener to December 4 against Duke.

There is no date yet scheduled for a possible rescheduling between Duke and Gardner-Webb.

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