Duke Tops Georgia Tech, Falls at Clemson
It was a mixed week for the Blue Devils, who handled Georgia Tech 79-57 at home but fell on the road at Clemson, 72-59. The Clemson loss dropped Duke to 1-2 in the ACC, the first time the Blue Devils have lost two of their first three conference games since the 2006-07 season. It was anything but a down week for Rodney Hood, however, as the redshirt sophomore forward reached 20 points in both games while averaging 23.5 points per game for the week with a .536 (15-of-28) shooting percentage from the floor, a .667 (8-of-12) clip from three-point range and a .818 (9-of-11) mark from the free throw line. The good news for Duke is that the Blue Devils have lost back-to-back games just once since the 2009-10 season and are 22-1 – including 3-0 this season – in games following a loss during that span. Duke hosts Virginia in Cameron Indoor Stadium Monday at 7 p.m.
Homecourt Winning Streak Reaches 25
The win over Georgia Tech extended Duke’s home court winning streak to 25 straight victories, which is tied for the second longest streak in the nation. The only team with a longer streak than Duke is Stephen F. Austin at 26 games, while Florida has a matching 25-game tear. Duke is 9-0 at home this season with an average margin of victory of 20.8 points per game and a scoring average of 88.7 points per game. Still, despite the lengthy streak, it is not even among the top five longest home court win streaks for the Blue Devil. The longest such streak was a 46-game tear from Jan. 13, 1997 to Feb. 9, 2000, followed by a 45-game streak from Feb. 22, 2009 to Jan. 19, 2012.
Dawkins On The Verge of Milestone
Andre Dawkins is on the verge of joining a select Duke basketball club, that being the small group of Blue Devils who have hit 200 three-pointers in their career. Dawkins currently needs one more trey to become only the 13th Duke player to reach that mark and the first since Jon Scheyer reached that mark from 2007-10. Dawkins, who also ranks fifth at Duke with a career three-point percentage of .408, has hit 32-of-72 (.444) three-pointers this season.
Dawkins A Nominee For USBWA Most Courageous Award
Much has been made of the personal journey Andre Dawkins has undergone since his sister was tragically killed in an automobile accident during his freshman season at Duke. Dawkins opened up before this season about the accident, how he dealt with it and how taking a year away from basketball in 2012-13 helped him cope with the tragedy. The United States Basketball Writers Association saw Dawkins’ story as worthy of a nomination for the USBWA Courage Award and pegged him as one of eight people worthy of the award alongside Kevin Ware (Louisville), Allan Chaney (High Point), Danny Berger (Utah State), Dau Jok (Penn), Robert Kirby (Memphis), Mark Fisher (San Diego State) and Jallen Messersmith (Benedictine College). Duke women’s forward Amber Henson, who has undergone six knees surgeries in the past two years, was also a nominee on the women’s side. For more information on Dawkins and the other nominees, visit the link below:
Big Sunday for Coach K Disciples
Although Duke had a weekend most fans would like to forget, a pair of coaches off the Mike Krzyzewski coaching tree guided their programs to important conference victories Sunday. Stanford head man Johnny Dawkins and first year Northwestern coach Chris Collins saw their teams post wins over nationally ranked foes.
Dawkins' troops registered an 82-80 round win over No. 17 Oregon behind some outstanding guard play from Chasson Randle and Anthony Brown. The Cardinal tandem combined for 47 points on 18-of-26 shooting to go along with 12 rebounds and six assists. Stanford is now 10-5 on the year with a 1-2 mark in league play.
Northwestern carded a hard fought 49-43 win over No. 23 Illinois to give Collins his first career Big Ten victory. Tre Demps hit three straight treys in the second half and Drew Crawford knocked down free throws down the stretch to secure the win. The Wildcats are now 8-9 overall and 1-3 in conference play.
Duke could benefit from the play of Stanford and Northwestern when the AP poll comes out on Monday. The Blue Devils are expected to drop from No. 16 following the loss to Clemson but should remain in the top 25 with an assist from a pair of programs led by former Duke assistants.
Duke has been ranked in the top 25 of the AP poll for 126 straight weeks.
Cameron Pegged No. 2 College Basketball Arena in Athlon Sports Poll
Cameron Indoor Stadium, the home of Duke basketball, was tabbed as the No. 2 arena in all of college basketball in a poll of experts conducted by Athlon Sports. Cameron was a consensus top-four pick by the 12 voters, which included Jay Bilas (ESPN), Rob Dauster (College Basketball Talk), Mike DeCourcy (The Sporting News), Pat Forde (Yahoo Sports), Fran Fraschilla (ESPN), Jeff Goodman (ESPN), Seth Greenberg (ESPN), Jason King (Bleacher Report), Dave LaMont (ESPN), Matt Norlander (CBS Sports), Eric Prisbell (USA Today) and Dick “Hoops” Weiss (BlueStar Media). Of those 12 experts, nine picked Duke among their top two, including Norlander who pegged Duke as the top venue in all of college basketball. For the complete list and voter breakdown, visit the link below:
Coach K to Lead New Duke Children’s Community Partners Program
The Duke Children’s Hospital & Health Center announced the launch of the new Duke Children’s Community Partners program Wednesday and pegged Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski to lead the effort as the honorary chairman. The new program allows community partner organizations and individuals to develop events that meet their specific interests and goals in fundraising for Duke Children’s and the annual MIX 101.5 Radiothon, which this year takes place on Feb. 11-12. Top level community partners will also be invited to attend the annual Coach K Closed Practice Session for Duke Children’s.
The role is a new one for Krzyzewski, who previously served as the honorary chairman of the Duke Children’s Holiday and All-Occasion Card Program that raised more than $1.5 million in its 32 years that went directly to supporting research, education and care.
For more information about the Duke Children’s Community Partners, visit www.dukechildrens.org.
South Beach Battioke
During his lengthy NBA career, Shane Battier has become known for a number of things, including fundamentally-sound play, tough defense and charity work through his The Battier Take Charge Foundation. Singing, however, has not been part of Battier’s repertoire and, thankfully, it should stay that way for a while. Battier and the rest of his Miami Heat teammates put their karaoke skills – nay, Battioke skills – on display in a promo for South Beach Battioke, a fundraiser by The Take Charge Foundation headed up by Battier. Battier puts it all out there singing hits such as “Hit Me Baby One More Time,” “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “You Give Love A Bad Name,” and his butchering of those classics will now be on display for eternity thanks to YouTube. Check out the link below to see Battier, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade and others struggle through numerous pop hits of decades past.
Duke’s Parker goes through process (Burlington Times-News)
Amile Jefferson’s new strength (Rocky Mount Telegram)
New AP poll ends one crazy Duke streak (ESPN)
Deng brings class act to Cleveland (Chicago Tribune)
Tweet of the Week
just purchased this beauty @ThisIsUncleDrew #getbuckets pic.twitter.com/pcajG0fQV0
Stat of the Week
Duke dropped out of the Associated Press National Top 10 this past week for the first time since Nov. 19, 2007. The Blue Devils played 225 consecutive games and spent 122 straight weeks in the top 10 before falling to No. 16 in last Monday’s poll. Duke went 186-39 (.827) during that run for the second longest top-10 streak in NCAA history.