Duke basketball: Details emerge from secret scrimmage against Villanova

Duke basketball forward Kyle Filipowski (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Duke basketball forward Kyle Filipowski (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /

Details are emerging from the Duke basketball secret scrimmage.  

Two of the more notable brands in college basketball are the Villanova and Duke basketball programs and the teams played each other in Washington D.C. on Saturday afternoon but no one could watch.

Jon Scheyer and Kyle Neptune, the head coaches of their respective programs, agreed to play a ‘secret scrimmage’ in which the teams cannot specifically comment on the matchup but the entire country is aware of the game through leaks in the media.

There has not been a final score publicized from the scrimmage — although it almost certainly was not a traditional 40-minute game — there have been some interesting comments about how Duke looked in its battle with the Big East contender.

Kyle Filipowski — coming off a pair of offseason hip surgeries — looked VERY GOOD in today’s secret scrimmage against Villanova,” wrote college basketball insider Jeff Goodman on social media.

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Filipowski, the ACC Preseason Player of the Year, has been working his way back to full health after the hip surgery he underwent in March has allowed him to become more athletic and move on the court without pain.

The 7-footer showcased his athleticism last week during the team’s scrimmage at Countdown to Craziness with a baseline dunk that would have been inconceivable for him to execute last season.

Filipowski only had five points and three rebounds in that 16-minute scrimmage but hearing that he performed well against a veteran and talented frontcourt of Villanova is certainly promising.

Other Duke basketball players standout in scrimmage

Two Blue Devils that did not have their best showings in the Countdown to Craziness scrimmage were freshmen guards Jared McCain and Caleb Foster.

Whether it was being overwhelmed by the moment of a packed Cameron Indoor Stadium for the first time in their careers or just a poor shooting night, the two 5-star recruits combined for eight points on 4-of-13 shooting and missed four 3-pointers.

That seemed to change on Saturday.

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“Was also told the freshmen guards – McCain and Foster — both played well for Duke,” Goodman added.

It seems likely that Jared McCain could be in the starting lineup for Duke when the season begins on Monday, November 6 against Dartmouth (9:00p.m. ET, ACC Network) but the Blue Devils will have its only public exhibition on Wednesday, November 1 (7:00p.m. ET, ACC Network Extra) against UNC Pembrook.

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