The Duke Blue Devils have already been written off this year. After Coach K left many fans and critics believed that Scheyer could not take over where Coach K left off, but that is far from the truth right now. Their 5-point loss against Kansas, who won March Madness last year, showed they have some talent on the floor.
They should be able to overcome those struggles in the first few games. Coming in as the 7th ranked team, Duke has something to prove and that they will. I believe we could see the Blue Devils playing Kansas in this year’s National Championship.
Could John Scheyer Replace Coach K?
When John Scheyer took over Coach K’s position at Duke many thought it was a year of learning for the Blue Devils. Coach Scheyer, I believe, has taken this head coaching job and run with it. Starting out 3-1 with a hard-fought loss to Kansas by 5.
Their schedule for the next month is great for Scheyer and the Blue Devils because their hardest game will be in February against their rivals North Carolina.
February 4th will really show if Duke has what it takes to beat one of the best teams in the Nation. This will give Scheyer a name for himself if he can beat the Tar Heels, since Scheyer is now one of the youngest coaches in a power conference.
How Much Will Dariq Whitehead Contribute?
Whitehead just got back onto the court after suffering an achilles injury before the start of the season. I believe Whitehead will be the key to the Blue Devils’ success down the road. Whitehead only played 15 minutes against Delaware, putting up only six points and two rebounds.
The Montverde alumni has been one of the best players in the Nation and coming into Duke he was the No. 3 overall prospect in the 2022 class. He was also ranked No. 1 small forward in his class before coming to Duke. As a freshman, Whitehead has a lot of room to improve on his outside game which will come in huge down the stretch.
Too Early to Predict?
After watching these opening games, this Duke team is something special. They have shown they could be ranked number one for the next few months. North Carolina has not been impressive in their opening games against some teams that had no business hanging around.
Duke has some of the top recruits that have come in this summer, and they look as if they have been there for two or three years. This is huge for Duke after Coach K retired, it also helps that Coach Scheyer could be one of the best recruiters in the Nation. Scheyer put a lot of time into the recruits that are on campus this year and I believe it will work out for them in the months to come.
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