DURHAM, N.C.- The Duke women’s basketball team earned a preseason ranking of No. 3 by the USA Today Sports preseason basketball magazine that has hit the newsstands. In two preseason listings, Duke has been tabbed No. 2 (Lindy’s Magazine) and No. 3 (USA Today).
Earning the No. 1 slot was Connecticut with Stanford, Duke, Tennessee, Maryland, North Carolina, Kentucky, Louisville, Notre Dame, California, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Baylor, Dayton and Oklahoma in the top 15. Rounding out the top 25 was Penn State, LSU, Colorado, Georgia Tech, Oklahoma State, Iowa State, Michigan State, South Carolina, Purdue and Marist.
The Blue Devils will face nine teams listed in the USA Today Sports preseason top 25 – Connecticut (1), Maryland (5), North Carolina (6), Kentucky (7), Notre Dame (9), California (10), Oklahoma (15), Georgia Tech (19) and Purdue (24).
Head coach Joanne P. McCallie and the Blue Devils return all five starters in 2013-14, including 93.7 percent of its scoring. Along with returning All-America selections Chelsea Gray and Elizabeth Williams, Duke welcomes back All-ACC performers Tricia Liston and Haley Peters. Freshman All-America and ACC Tournament MVP Alexis Jones is the final returning starter for Duke. A total of 11 letterwinners will return to the squad next season as McCallie enters her seventh season with the Blue Devils.
Duke will get started with its annual Blue/White scrimmage on Sunday, Oct. 27 followed by exhibition contests against Glenville State College (Oct. 30) and Coker College (Nov. 3). The Blue Devils will open the season on Sunday, Nov. 10 at third-ranked California.