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Let’s Meet the Duke Blue Devils

NCAA Texas Duke Basketball

Unlike American, most people know a lot about Duke.  Chances are most people hate Duke as well.  All Villanova fans are anti-Duke this week, so let’s look at the team everybody hates.

1) Who are they?  Duke is one of the most storied programs in college basketball history.  It has won three National Championships and has been to the final seven times.  The team is lead by Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski, who has taken the team to the NCAA tournament 25 times in his 26 years with the team.

This season Duke starts freshman guard Elliot Williams, junior guards Jon Scheyer and Gerald Henderson, junior forward Lance Thomas and sophomore forward Kyle Singler.

2) How did they get here?  The Blue Devils are currently 30-6 on the season and went 11-5 in the ACC.  Duke beat Florida State two weeks ago to win the ACC tournament.  All six of the Blue Devils’ losses have come against tournament teams with their last loss on March 8, against UNC.  Since then they have won five straight.

3)  Who to watch:  Duke is not a team with exceptional athletic ability, but the one player who can do almost anything on the court is Henderson.  This season he is averaging career-highs in points, rebounds, assists and steals.  Henderson is the best offensive player on the team, but he can also impact a game defensively.  On many occasions this season, he has taken away a team’s best scorer.

4) What to expect:  This game has gotten a lot of hype, and deservedly so.  Despite facing off in the Sweet 16, these two teams are playing like they have Final Four caliber talent.  Both teams score well, so this should be an entertaining game to watch.  The difference for Villanova will be if they can continue to get strong performances from role players like senior forward Dwayne Anderson.  For Duke, the Blue Devils must remain hot from beyond the arc.  The team is shooting 47 percent from 3-point range in the first two rounds.

-David Cassilo

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