Duke basketball: Jon Scheyer makes first major coaching decision

Duke basketball center Christian Reeves (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Duke basketball center Christian Reeves (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /

Duke basketball head coach Jon Scheyer made his first major decision on the bench. 

It did not take long for Jon Scheyer to be pressed into making his first major decision as the head coach of the Duke basketball program.

Late in the Blue Devils’ 71-44 victory over Jacksonville on Monday night, the rookie head coach turned to his bench and inserted Christian Reeves into the game.

Reeves posted three points and two rebounds in two minutes but that’s not why the decision of putting him into a blowout game was a major move for Scheyer.

The talk since Reeves committed to Duke from Oak Hill Academy (Va.) was that he would redshirt this season due to the significant depth in the front-court for the Blue Devils with the likes of Dereck Lively, Kyle Filipowski, Ryan Young, and Mark Mitchell.

There just wouldn’t be enough minutes to go around.

ALSO READ: Duke provides update on injured freshmen ahead of opener

However, Lively has been out in recent weeks with a calf injury and Christian Reeves has shined in practice, according to many close with the Blue Devils.

Reeves punctuated his outstanding preseason with an 11-point, 5-rebound showing in the Blue vs. White Scrimmage during Duke’s Countdown to Craziness as Scheyer said “anything’s on the table for us right now,” when speaking about the 7-foot-1 freshman redshirting following the event.

However, he did not play in the “secret” scrimmage against Houston but logged ten minutes in Duke’s lone exhibition against Fayetteville State.

Now, he’s played in the regular season and having him redshirt is completely off the table.

Duke basketball must continue to develop promising freshman properly

The move to play Christian Reeves on opening night shows how excited the program is about his development and the potential the coaching staff thinks he can bring to not only this Duke team but future Blue Devil rosters.

Playing time will be more difficult to come by with he anticipated return of Dereck Lively this week but Jon Scheyer must find a way to get Christian Reeves as many minutes as possible this season to continue his development in an upward trajectory.

Duke (1-0) returns to the court on Friday night against the University of South Carolina Upstate (1-0) at 6:30p.m. on the ACC Network.

Next. Paolo Banchero already launching All-Star campaign. dark