Duke basketball: Dariq Whitehead’s status for UNC looking probable

Duke basketball forward Dariq Whitehead (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Duke basketball forward Dariq Whitehead (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /

The status of Duke basketball forward Dariq Whitehead is becoming more clear. 

There is only one injury concern for the Duke basketball program entering Saturday’s game against North Carolina (15-7, 7-4 ACC) and it involves freshman forward Dariq Whitehead.

Whitehead suffered a lower leg strain last week in a loss against Virginia Tech and has missed the last two games for the Blue Devils, with victories, against Georgia Tech and Wake Forest but remains close to returning to the court.

“I don’t want to guarantee it for sure, but I don’t want to rule it out,” head coach Jon Scheyer told reporters on Thursday afternoon.

The Duke head coach added that he was hoping to see Whitehead practice before coming to a decision on the status of the five-star recruit.

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Scheyer previously said before the Wake Forest matchup that Dariq Whitehead would not be able to play if he did not practice so it certainly seems like that the freshman is taking a step in the positive direction.

Whitehead is averaging 8.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 1.2 assists per game this season but since December 10 the Newark, New Jersey native is posting 11.1 points per contest.

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The Blue Devils (16-6, 7-4 ACC) have been severely lacking production from its bench since Dariq Whitehead’s injury and Jon Scheyer made adjustments to the starting lineup.

Ryan Young was the only player to score off the bench on Tuesday night against the Demon Deacons and there was very little margin for error from players like Jeremy Roach, Tyrese Proctor, and Kyle Filipowski in the victory.

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While it is still uncertain if Dariq Whitehead will play on Saturday it seems like things are trending in the right direction for him to take the floor in the highly anticipated rivalry matchup.

Tipoff is slated for 6:30p.m. EST inside Cameron Indoor Stadium on ESPN.

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