Duke Blue Devils
Duke preview capsule
Duke Blue Devils

Duke preview capsule

Published Oct. 26, 2018 9:06 a.m. ET


Last season: 29-8, lost to Kansas in the Elite Eight.

Nickname: Blue Devils.

Coach: Mike Krzyzewski.


Conference: Atlantic Coast.

Who's gone: All five starters. Big men Marvin Bagley III and Wendell Carter Jr., and guards Grayson Allen, Gary Trent Jr. and Trevon Duval are all in the NBA.

Who's back: Not much. Center Marques Bolden, the team's leading returning scorer, averaged 3.9 points in less than 13 minutes per game while Javin Delaurier is the top returning rebounder at 4.0 rpg.

Who's new: The Blue Devils brought in the consensus No. 1 recruiting class and four of its members are expected to start. They're led by Canadian guard and preseason AP All-American R.J. Barrett and athletic freak Zion Williamson — who at 6-foot-7 and 285 pounds has filled YouTube with highlight-reel dunks. Point guard Tre Jones is the younger brother of Tyus Jones, the most outstanding player at the 2015 Final Four for Duke.

The Skinny: It's title-or-bust again for Duke's latest crop of players with the potential to jump to the NBA after only one season in college. Krzyzewski has installed an offensive system that depends on the players' versatility and their court sense to make intelligent reads and decisions. That system helped the Golden State Warriors become an NBA dynasty, and Krzyzewski hopes it works as well with his talented group.

Expectations: The Blue Devils are favorites to win the NCAA Tournament at 5-to-1, according to Las Vegas oddsmakers.


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