Duke Shows No Signs of Rust Following Holiday Layoff
The nine-day break between games did little to quash Duke’s momentum, as the Blue Devils won their fourth game in a row, 82-59 over Eastern Michigan in Cameron. Andre Dawkins, who drew a last-minute start when Rodney Hood came down with an illness following player introductions, continued his hot streak, scoring a season-high 20 points on 6-of-10 shooting, all from three-point range. Jabari Parker scored 23 points, Amile Jefferson hauled in a career-high 14 rebounds and Rasheed Sulaimon continued to regain form with 13 points on 2-of-3 shooting from the field and 9-of-11 free throws.
The Eastern Michigan game precedes Duke’s showdown against Elon Tuesday, which will be the final non-conference game of the regular season. Duke opens ACC play against league newcomer Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind., this Saturday at 4 p.m.
Parker Named USBWA National Freshman of the Week
Jabari Parker has been a regular winner of the ACC Rookie of the Week award, but the freshman forward received his first national rookie honor Tuesday when CBSSports.com’s Jeff Borzello, in partnership with the USBWA, picked him as the Wayman Tisdale National Freshman of the Week. Parker posted a pair of 20-point games against Gardner-Webb and UCLA while averaging 22.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game while shooting 50.0 percent or better from the field and the three-point line. In related but not surprising news, Parker also earned ACC Rookie of the Week honors the same day.
Blue Devil Network Catches Up With Brand, Henderson & McRoberts
The stars aligned for the Blue Devil Network this past week in Atlanta, as the crew – which was in town covering the Duke football team’s Chick-fil-A Bowl activities – was on hand to attend the Atlanta Hawks-Charlotte Bobcats game in Phillips Arena that featured three former Blue Devils – Hawks center Elton Brand, Bobcats guard Gerald Henderson and Bobcats forward Josh McRoberts. Brand and the Hawks got the better of Henderson & McRoberts, taking the game 118-116 in overtime, but all three granted BDN time to catch up for some exclusive video content. Check out GoDuke.com in the coming weeks to see what three of Duke’s current NBA products had to say.
Duke Football Players Showcase Basketball Skills
With a school-record 10 wins heading into the Chick-fil-A Bowl this Tuesday, the ACC Coastal Division Champion Duke football team has provided plenty of evidence as to its athletic prowess this season. Four members of the team took that display to a new arena this past week when wide receiver Issac Blakeney, quarterback Anthony Boone, wide receiver Jamison Crowder and safety DeVon Edwards competed in the Chick-fil-A Bowl Basketball Skills Challenge at halftime of the Atlanta Hawks-Charlotte Bobcats game in Phillips Arena. The event, part of the week-long Xbox One Battle for Bowl Week put on by the Chick-fil-A Bowl leading up to Tuesday’s game, pitted those four players against four others from Texas A&M in a relay of sorts that included dribbling, passing, shooting and layup/dunking skills.
Blakeney, who starred on the hardwood alongside Crowder at Monroe High School in Monroe, N.C., started it off for Duke with a one-handed slam in front of a raucous crowd, followed by Boone, who dribbled through several obstacles before hitting a target with a chest pass and bounce pass. Edwards shot free throws before Crowder showed off his point-guard skills with some impressive dribbling and a layup.
Sadly, Texas A&M’s four – which included quarterback Johnny Manziel – came out with a half-second victory, eclipsing Duke’s time of 22.8 with a 22.3 mark of their own. The Blue Devil Network was on hand to film the event and posted a video to the link below:
Amile Jefferson is a rising star (CBSSports.com)
Parker, Dawkins lead Duke in rout of Eastern Michigan (Durham Herald-Sun)
Collins embraces challenge of lifting Northwestern (USA Today)
Suns unexpectedly find center of the future in Miles Plumlee (ValleyOfTheSuns.com)
Tweet of the Week
Phoenix Suns @Suns
WATCH: We once saw @MilesPlumlee13 turn Thaddeous Young into a poster. http://on.suns.com/2e3 #ToMilesPlumlee! #SunsVs76ers
Stat of the Week
Jabari Parker has received a league-leading four of the seven ACC Rookie of the Week awards. The record for ACC Rookie of the Week selections is 10 held by Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina, 2005-06) and Kenny Anderson (Georgia Tech, 1989-90).