Duke basketball: The most lethal defensive lineup next season

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse
Duke basketball

Duke basketball (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

These staunch defenders could constitute Duke basketball’s lockdown lineup.

The Duke basketball offense ought to be an improvement from the 2020-21 version, whose 76.0 points per game marked the program’s lowest average in 14 years. But remember, the easiest, most impactful scores often come from fastbreak opportunities via steals, blocks, and long defensive rebounds.

Therefore, if the 2021-22 team is to maximize its clear potential, then the Blue Devils must pride themselves on defense. Fortunately for Mike Krzyzewski, his 42nd collection in Durham appears to have the necessary pieces to do just that.

ALSO READ: Ranking Coach K’s first 40 Duke teams

Ample length. Plenty of athleticism. Tons of muscle. Adequate experience. Sufficient depth to keep legs fresh.

Now, it’s all about buying into the required mindset. It’s about displaying the level of grit and togetherness that repeatedly pushed Duke to the promised land in Coach K’s glory days. Basically, it comes down to whether or not the fellas arrive on campus in June absolutely deadset on embracing the school’s signature floor-slapping persona.

Again, no one is questioning whether the current 10 scholarship players on tap collectively possess the attributes to get the job done.

With that in mind, let’s look at the five Blue Devils who should lay the foundation by forming the most fearsome lineup on the defensive end. First, though, we should point out that Duke is still in the hunt for five-star recruit Patrick Baldwin Jr.; however, seeing that D isn’t exactly his specialty, he wouldn’t be in this particular group anyway…

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse