Duke basketball makes major revelations in first scrimmage of practice

Duke basketball forward Mark Mitchell (Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images)
Duke basketball forward Mark Mitchell (Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images) /

The Duke basketball team provided some major takeaways in its first official scrimmage. 

Footage of the Duke basketball team has been released by the program throughout the summer in offseason workouts but for the first time there is video of the team playing 5-on-5 in an official practice.

However, the biggest thing that fans could notice in the 9-minute clip posted to YouTube was the absence of sophomore forward Mark Mitchell.

Mitchell had been dealing with a knee injury throughout the offseason but was fully cleared to return to basketball activities as the Blue Devils were in the midst of its summer program but his previous injury is not what is keeping him sidelined in October.

The 6-foot-9 forward revealed during Duke’s media day that he has been dealing with a minor hip flexor strain and head coach Jon Scheyer is leaning on the side of caution by keeping him out of scrimmage.

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As usual, the guards were the biggest story of the game as freshman Caleb Foster scored the most amount of points in the portion of scrimmage released to the public.

Foster is still expected to come off the bench for the Blue Devils but the depth that Scheyer will have at his disposal in the backcourt could be the deepest in years for Duke.

Duke basketball debuts interesting frontcourt combination

One of the biggest questions that remain for the Blue Devils is the center position and who will get time behind the likely starter of Kyle Filipowski.

Ryan Young and Christian Reeves will be battling for minutes on the floor but Jon Scheyer has the ability to play small with either Mark Mitchell or freshman Sean Stewart playing power forward next to Filipowski.

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Despite Mitchell being absent from the scrimmage, Scheyer put Filipowski and Young on the same team for a segment and while the clips of the two players on the court weren’t long, it could be a lineup combination that is used during the regular season.

The two saw time together last season, mostly earlier in the season before Dereck Lively II fully recovered from his calf strain and seized control of the starting center position.

Regardless, Duke will have options to mix and match throughout its season and it will be up to the head coach to find the right lineup.

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