Every time I watch the Duke Blue Devils line up and play basketball, I can’t help but ask, “Would I want any of those guys on my basketball team?” Really no one on that roster looks like they should even be as legit as they are. But looks can be deceiving.
Not many in the country have played better than Nolan Smith. Smith is a go getter a finisher and a prime time player. The bigger the game, the bigger he plays. Kyle Singler is now a household name, and I am not even sure I would have picked him up in a pickup game as he was coming out of high school despite all of the accolades that he had as a high school All American.
Mike Krzyzewski does it every year. Every time the critics step up and say that his team is weak or a big name player like Kyrie Irving goes down, Coack K finds a way to continue winning. His players don’t even talk a lot. They just go about the business of destroying the competition in front of them. You have the guys you kind of like on the roster throughout the years, and then you have the guys who you can’t stand because they play with a cocky confidence that makes you sick to the stomach. A guy who you know if you could get him out on the court in the park you would make him your ……!
Coach K has not lost a non-conference game at home since 2000. That’s a little over eleven years of excellence. The more I watch his teams play, the more I am inspired. Coach K is closely approaching the all time wins record by his mentor and former coach Robert Montgomery Knight. Bobby Knight will tell you that what makes Coach K such a good coach is that he demands excellence. He finds guys that fit together like a puzzle. When he has pieces that don’t fit, he reshapes what he has and makes it work. He turned guys like John Scheyer who was a prolific scorer into a bonafide point guard last season. This year his ace guard went down and he just found a way to do it by committee. The mark of a good coach is the ability to make the adjustments that your puzzle needs to complete the picture.
As an avid hater of Duke Basketball, I have to admit that I admire them from afar. I respect greatness and I know when I am in the presence of greatness. Coach K is probably the best that has ever done it in my generation and I appreciate him the way the folks of yesteryear appreciated John Wooden. You could tell after he led the US to the olympic gold that even some pro athletest thought enough of him that they wished they would have played for him in college. Enough of this already! Duck Fuke!
Stay Breezy ~ I’m Out!