Duke basketball preview!

#4 R.P.I. Duke #48 R.P.I. Virginia Tech: 

Virginia Tech men’s basketball returns after a long-ass roadie down to the Pineapple State with what most R.A.T.T. peeps prolly actually expected.

The Hokies went a not unexpected 1-2 overall and yet they one-upped ex-#1 Michigan State. Then proceeded to play with something south of a lotta energy vs. Dayton and then promptly ‘died by the 3-point sword’ vs. a frontcourt severely hurting B.Y.U. Or in other words, “will the real VeeTee please stand up, please stand up!” And that all being said… this is prolly not the best 8 up 1 down (no.1o ranked) opponent to get the best or most R.A.T.T. self-assessment against. Tho’ if scoring is your thang you’ve come to the right place. Nevertheless, what you wanna know is… who is gonna win and by how much; right? Read on, to find… out!

Duke Head CoachMichael William Krzyzewski: Age=72, 1,138–344 (.768) overall, 1,065–285 (.789) at Duke. 
$7,004,000.oo (down, if you are keeping score at home!)

Coach K is pretty good, and this just in, rain is rumored to be, wet. As this is about as well preserved of a seven-decade-years-old gentleman as you will ever ever see. And his rèsumè is about as well-heeled as any you will ever sporting read.

Would that we all could age this, well!

Among them {sic: accolades}: Baller K Played at West Point under Bob Knight as a 5′10″ combo Pt.G/Shooting-G. He was captain of the Army basketball team in his senior season, 1968–69, leading his team to the N.I.T. as Vietnam era West Point finished fourth in the tournament. From 1969 to 1974, Krzyzewski served in the United States Army and directed service teams for three years. In 2005 he was presented West Point’s Distinguished Graduate Award. And thank you for serving –after that Mike has not really done much of anything as a coach…

…he has only won nine, that’s (9) Gold Medals for the USofA! He has only won five, that’s (5) National Championships in men’s hoops (1991, 1992, 2001, 2010, 2015)! He has only won thirteen that’s (14) Atlantic Coast Tourneys. Among men’s college basketball coaches, only U.C.L.A.’s John Wooden, with 10, has won more NCAA Championships than Coach-K.

Coach Krzyzewski has the most wins of any coach in college basketball history. Coach-K became the first Division I men’s basketball coach to reach 1,000 wins. And is only a six-time national coach of the year and a five-time A.c.c. coach of the year; that’s all. He is a two-time inductee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, in 2001 for his individual coaching career and in 2010 as part of the collective induction of the “Dream Team.”

Additionally… Coach-K has only won 24 (varying) Coaching Awards, he is National Polish American Sports Hall of Fame inductee (class of 1991), he was the 2011: Sports Illustrated “Sportsman of the Year”, the United States Military Academy named the “Coach Krzyzewski Teaching Character Through Sports Award for him, and he was merely inducted as a Laureate of The Lincoln Academy of Illinois and awarded the Order of Lincoln (the State’s highest honor) by the Governor of Illinois in 2014 in the area of sports. That’s, it! What a bum.

And God Bless the Emily Krzyzewski Center (charity) that he and his wife (Carol “Mickie” Marsh) founded to honor his reposed mum. Daddy K and Carol have
three daughters and nine grandchildren

Duke at a glance:

  • 1st in Swats!!!
  • 4th most FTA’s!
  • 9th in Swipes!
  • 12th in Rebounding Margin.
  • 13th in Scoring O.
  • 13th in Assists.
  • 313th in fewest turnovers!
  • (1 injury; Coach God bless!)

Dukie Returning Starters=1, (Tre Jones).

Duke Strengths:

  • Freshmanic, and one #1, Vernon Carey Jr., who is a true-C who stands 6′10″, and tips the Toledo’s at a semi-muscular and a kinda lean looking 270 lbs., and is legit. Very. Actually. The team leads in scoring (~19.2 ppg), rebounding (~9.7 rpg), 3-pointing (80%), the team and league-lead in shooting (61%), and blocking (2.4 bpg); would all seem to conspire to say so. This kid kinda/sorta reminds one of a leaner Moses Malone. Tho Vern’, he too, comes to dee.dub and do work. ESPN’s no.5 in the country last year does not suck; neither does the fact that he can (already) rock two that’s (2) International Gold medals at study-hall. A modern-era rarified consensus ***** (5-star) Center and that’s kinda like Elvis and his Dino’ farm… i.e. hard to come by these days or so last time I checked. Carey Jr’s old man played football at the University of Miami and was an eight-year veteran of the Miami Dolphins after being drafted as the 19th overall pick in the 2004 NFL Draft. Vern’s late grandfather, Vincent Carey, played basketball at Oral Roberts University. Yes, I and the roundball Genome Project would both say that projects rather handsomely indeed. As Vern was merely the #1 baller in the sunshine state last year where he only sports an AAAAA Florida state championship bling. The book says he’s a skillful big who mainly brings it from 15′ in, and he is known to have tremendous footwork for his skyscraping size. This guy is an Association pro’, when; not ‘if’. And oh ‘yes’, Mister Carey is a natural Koufax, a southpaw blocker and this unorthodox approach aids and abets his towering D all the mo’.
  • 6′6″, 193 lbs. nugget or rookie year voter Cassius Stanley is a highly coveted West-Coast recruit all the way from Lakerland itself. Cassius is a pure Two or S/G and he was only #21 in all the land last year per ESPN. He only won three straight State Titles scholastically and was only ranked #1 for the entire state of Cali’ last campaign. His family genome is actually that of T&F stars all over… so you’d have to think he might just propel some measure of pure speed if/when Stanley needs it. My rap-sheets all call Cassius a tremendous athlete in the open court who can and will attack the rack from all over. And frankly, he reminds a bit of a rookie year Kobe assaulting the hoop with something pre-Mamba days to prove. 12.9 ppg on 47% long with highlight-reel dunks in between makes you wonder just how lead this third-fiddle is? (and he’s also whispered to be a lockdown defensive Ace (1.4 spg) when he decides to be). As much as most like V.Carey up above -and I do to some extent as well- it is Stanley has me very slashing Lead-G curious. (UPDATE: hamstrung kid-n-play here who may be out for a while; possibly until at least Christmas, is the early vibe… St.Nikhon bless!)

    Loquacious BIG 1o1…
  • Tre Jones is a 6′3″, 185 lb., sophomoric kid from the former Lakerland or the Land of the Lakes (Minnesota) itself. He is Duke’s starting One (i.e. Pt.Guard) and he’s prolly got a modeling/acting career if he prefers not to remain drama-free. As I’d be betting the over on this kid’s social game off-court here. That said… he just set a Duke single-season record for assist-turnover ratio (3.62)! That’s all, he’s only #1 all-time at Duke of all the places. So you know he’s got 20-20 Qb eyes and Wr good-hands on his handles. Further, Tre also just became the first player in Duke history to record five different games in a career with 7+ assists and no turnovers. Snap! Now mix in: a second-best 16.7 ppg on 3.6 rpg per an A.c.c. leading 7.2 dimes dropped (apg) with a likewise near A.c.c. leading 2.3 spg and you suddenly have a very complete baller on your hands. 42% shooting and 34% long could use a bump; although those are not the worst shooting metrics either. Jones, however, does have a history of shoulder dings (St.Christopher bless) and hip dents (St.Wolfgang help). So none of that has helped any range of his… and yet this kid with his D and his Qb-skillz is indeed a paycheck Pro’, only question being: export or domestic?
(score this one as a Weakness or Strength as you deign fit… tho’ this is a more verbally expressive Duke team than often seen under coach-K… wonder if this loosening speaks to their tongue-tied turnovers?)

Duke Weaknesses:

  • Roster turnover is massive here; yet again… as we only face one true rotational guy from what we caught from Duke at the end of last season. (and ‘yes’, I know… 350 other D-1’s would indeed like to have Duke’s Equipment Manager’s uniform issuing problems; indeed!)
  • There is only one basketball to go, around.
  • Duke is short-handed and dented at the moment… so now is as good a hosting time as any.
  • Though the whispers say that…  this year’s cast of newcomers is really an understudy to last year’s triune 1st-round draft pick(s) of one-n-done newcomers. And some Zionite kinda kid— I wonder what happened to him? (as a staggering ~65 ppg and 25 rpg did just (early-entry) Exit Stage Left)

Dukie Bench: (depth=5+, longer rotation than usual too)

Sr. year, 6′7″, 222 lb. Swing, from down-under, would be Jack White mate. Jack hails from Traralgon, Victoria, Australia by way of the fabled Australian Institute of Sport. Jack is clearly highly thought of as you seldom see many Team Captain’s checking in from the bench. Jack nets you 3 ppg on a nice 4.8 rpg, a swipe, a swat and even 1.5 dimes in relief. Only his shooting lags a bit as he’s a better more skillful baller than his 37.5% so far suggests. As the word is/was that he fields a: ‘diverse’ shooting game and his D and rebounding are pretty useful enough as is. As Jack only has one Aussie gold-medal and was only Mr. Basketball for the state of: Victoria on Paul Hogan’s homecourt.

Javin DeLaurier is a 6′10″, 238 lb. final-year Shipman, Va. backyard escapee. Javin has been a careerist sub’ at Duke with 16 overall starts. Javin is a 4.3 ppg and 4.6 rpg contributor, and he has more of an offensive put-back machine and has a hack-attack rep’ at this stage of his tenure @Duke. Although he has not missed a shot in the last 10-days to boot. So there is that…

6′6″ and string bean 19o lb. Alex O’Connell (who actually found four-pounds) kinda looks like he walked off The Outsiders set as an underfed “greaser” who put on some kayoed “soc’s” Jordache clothing and effortlessly fit right in. Seriously, Alex looks the L.L. Bean boy-model part and he’s basically the lowest-ranked (no.80) national recruit in the Duke rotation— poor Duke! Alex and his 4.2 pine-squad ppg are said to be dynamite in the open-court and he can dial a floor spreading long-distance at a mere A.c.c. leading 54% on his 3’s two years ago down to 39% last season and now plummeting to a mere 22.2% from deep! A.K.A: “ALL Raleigh-Durham slump-busting quality girls please report to the Duke dancefloor, STAT!” As I had thought this kid to be a Pro’ just on his depth alone; tho’ now who knows? Plus he Alex courts one of the rare stop-on-a-dime pull-up games this side of the Virginia Squires and a certain Dr. who made a lotta “J”‘s the very same way. With 2.6 rpg and .8 spg just ’cause.

Upsetting Duke @Home is all about, what(s)???

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Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of Dukie's who could duke it out @Tech=9.

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is… honestly friends… how did we upset Magic Johnson State?

I mean, that’s a helluva a win and all… tho’ if you had to place your hand on the TSL.com Bible, would you say that the first game or the second two Maui Tournament games were truer to O&M form?

As the way Eye see things… we’ve got a good underclassman corps, we’ve got a nearly shocking uptick in recruiting under M.Young, a seemingly better than expected overall program trajectory and after that?

We still have next to nothing on the inside in the paint. We are still a couple of seasons away from fully assimilating this entirely systemic centric coach and that’s gonna take a minute or three. Or in other words, yours is a brave new world if you pick Vah.Tech to {sic: successfully} Duke this one out here.


Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is calling for a next time Duke check back as this is their A.c.c. opener for this 2019-2020 campaign.

The annualized year-to-date vitals say that… VeeTee is actually up +3% in shooting percentage margin for the season (close to split), VeeTee is up an interesting +7% in 3-point percentage margin for the duration (all on O), and yet Duke is up +8 caroms on the glass in rebounding margin.

The most recent 5-game metrics say that… Duke is now up +3% in shooting percentage margin for the last fortnight (close to split), Duke is up +6% in 3-point percentage margin (with VT shooting better yet defensing the 3-ball much much worse of late), and Duke is up the very same +8 in Windex work or in rebounding margin.

  • Duke has dropped three of its last five meetings against the Hokies, including a 77-72 setback in Blacksburg, Va. last February.
  • Tech rolled to a 6-o start with an A.c.c. win over Clemson and a victory over Michigan State to open the Maui Invitational last week before allowing a total of 179 points in L’s to Dayton and B.Y.U. to finish fourth.
  • The Hokies sit second in the nation in made 3-point field goals per game (12.1) and have drained 43.1 percent (fifth in the country entering Thursday) of their attempts.
  • Virginia Tech hasn’t played this week as it was the only A.c.c. team not participating in the annual made for telly Big-10/A.c.c. Challenge.
  • Virginia Tech will play all five of its December games at home.

Duke is perfect (2-o) Away and VeeTee is likewise still perfected @home (4-o).
Duke is up +1% at the charity stripe for the year.
VT is actually +6 on R&R.

     As said above, won’t get a better-upset looksee at a powerhouse such as Duke than this. Running @Home defending our very own Cassell vs. a dented Duke backcourt says so.

Although Dukie S/F, (6′8″, 2o8 lbs.), r-Fr. Joey Baker is averaging 13.5 points over the last two contests in lieu of Stanley, and t-Fr., P/F, Matthew Hurt (6′9″, 217 lbs.), just dropped double-digits as well. As Dukie actually gained a year of experience here; albeit remaining rather nubile by-the-bye.

7 PM kick-off!

Or in other words… a big Duke team just got taller even if it will be a bit longer before their Top-5 rotation is totally recovered.

The call...

From what I can see… Duke may have dropped some open-court talent (Stanley) though it gained even more down low in the paint.


Right, where coach M.Young and company have very little resistance to offer and nearly even less size than that. As Duke currently reconstructed fields not less than five full guys in their playing-rotation north of our tallest starter. And that is only compound-fractured all the more when you consider they are north on talent in addition to raw match-up playground pick the tallest kid first, foibles.

Because as nutty as this may read… I truly thought we had a better chance to fun-n-gun with Duke in the open floor, and just take our home-standing chances from deep in the familiar sight-lines of our own backyard than we do vs. heighty Duke.

Well, not so much…
…as our freshmanic squad has nobody to check Carey Junior.

(84% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech
=67, Duke=83




3 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Probably right but a couple times this year we are going to surprise a few teams and I hope this is one of those times

  2. Probably about right. But that’s why ya play the game. Love the Hokies, W or L. A.H.

    1. @Both:

      well, let’s hope I’m improbably, ‘rong.

      And he (M.Young) does have some refugee Buzzbombers leftover from distance.
      They will get hawt hawt hawt and play Buster Poindexter basketball on
      someone (they should not) and take an upset scalp or 2
      just because that’s how shooters, roll.


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