Mike Krzyzewski, Duke basketball stick it to NCAA with latest decision

Duke basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports)
Duke basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports) /

Duke basketball and head coach Mike Krzyzewski are sticking it to the NCAA with their latest decision.

Mike Krzyzewski and the Duke basketball program have come under the microscope following the loss on Tuesday night against Illinois.

Following the second defeat in four games at Cameron Indoor Stadium this season, Krzyzewski was asked if he felt right about playing in a pandemic. The Hall of Famer gave a detailed response, saying he thought the situation needed to be ‘reassessed’ as the virus has taken on a new life and run rampant around the country.

Alabama head coach Nate Oats was the first coach to publicly criticize Krzyzewski for his comments, but many fans and those in the media have called out the 73-year-old for his statement.

However, Mike Krzyzewski is sticking it to all the haters and the NCAA by canceling all the remaining non-conference games Duke has on its schedule.

ALSO READ: Duke gets positive news on recruiting trail

Surely, the reaction to this news from the Blue Devils must mean they are ducking three more ranked teams, right?

Well, maybe not.

Because of games already canceled due to COVID-19, Duke only had one non-conference game left on its schedule, next Saturday, December 19 against Gardner-Webb, a game that already had to be postponed from November 25 because of positive tests with the Runnin’ Bulldogs.

Mike Krzyzewski released a video statement on the official Duke Men’s Basketball Twitter page on Thursday night:

Duke, which has not had a positive COVID-19 case within its athletic department this season, had men’s basketball games on November 25, December 6, and December 12 all canceled because of positive tests within the opposition’s program.

Duke basketball schedule going forward

The Blue Devils already had Saturday’s game canceled against Charleston Southern, so Duke will not be on the floor until Wednesday, December 16 against Notre Dame, the first time the team will leave Durham this season.

Following that matchup, Duke will allow its players to travel home for a handful of dates, something Krzyzewski noted was taking a toll on the mental health of his team in his postgame comments.

All players who travel home will have tested negative for COVID-19 and will subsequently quarantine upon arrival back to Durham.

ALSO READ: Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski comes under fire after loss

Duke will have 12 days off in between its game against Notre Dame and its next game on Tuesday, December 29 against Pittsburgh at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Given their struggles this season, the Blue Devils need to play games and continue to get better with each other on the court, but perhaps Mike Krzyzewski thinks all his team needs is practice time and values his players’ mental health over winning basketball games.

It will not go over well with all non-Duke fans or supporters, but credit to Coach K for sticking with his beliefs and doing what he thinks is best for his players.

Trending. Duke basketball freshmen overtake veterans in latest season development. light