Was too much expected in the preseason for this Duke basketball team?
It’s time for a reality check for the Duke basketball faithful.
As a reminder, this team lost seven players from last year’s team including four NBA Draft picks while returning one starter and a backup point guard, while the greatest college basketball coach of all time retired.
Smart Duke fans should have been expecting a let down from the absurd expectations that Coach K set and lived up to on a yearly basis.
The Blue Devils have a 35-year old coach navigating the toughest take over of a program in college basketball history with an entirely new team and a mostly new staff.
The overreactions on social media have been somewhat expected but it’s shocked at the lack of awareness with how hard it is for any team to gel with this many new players, let alone trying to live up to the Duke standard.
Now, with that being said, this was one of the more disappointing weeks in recent memory for Duke basketball.
Jon Scheyer set a record early on in his tenure I’m sure he did not have on his bingo card as we started the season.
Listen, every team will lose by double digits at least once in a season.
Every team will struggle guarding a particular player, every team will struggle shooting on any given night.
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The bigger issue with this team is that they do not look, move, or play like “traditional” Duke teams.
North Carolina State was playing harder, faster and with a tenacity that not one single player on Duke could match.
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Following that game, Duke opened up against Boston College looking a bit better on both sides of the floor.
The emergence of Dariq Whitehead is officially here as he scored 18 points on 50.0-percent shooting from the field including four 3-pointers. Whitehead coming into his own could not come at a more important time for this Duke team as their offense has regressed tremendously over the past three weeks.
Kyle Filipowski seems to be hitting his freshman wall after starting the season lights out with an expectation of a double-double on a nightly basis. He has since looked lost and lethargic with extremely bad turnovers with his passing and dribbling.
This Duke team is in need of a major wake up call and unfortunately they don’t have much time to figure it out. The next four games are against the Top-3 teams in the ACC.
If Duke can go 2-1 against Pittsburgh, Clemson, and Miami that will be a tremendous result and would likely secure them to finish in the Top-5 of the conference.
Let’s all take a collective breath.
In the world of Twitter it is hard to convince people that multiple things can be true.
We can agree that Duke has a ton to work on while also realizing Coach Scheyer was bound to have adversity in his first year.