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Amile Jefferson Signs with Duke (!!!!!)

Date: 5/15/2012

Duke Basketball  
Posted By: Matt (gobsmacked)

Here's the CBS story on the signing, and, for reference, CBS' 2012 recruiting rankings.  

Some thoughts: 

(1)  So our team is shaping up to be quite interesting next season.  I never really much cared if Rivers left or not - - "it was what it was," and after seeing the deleterious effect of his presence on much of the rest of the team (which wasn't necessarily his fault), causing the preposterous chemistry issues and ultimate combustion at the hands of - - Lehigh - - it's not necessarily the worst thing that he left.  If he had stayed, I certainly had a not-inconsiderable list of things I wanted him to work on.  I also was in the very slim minority who didn't want either Shabazz Muhammad or Tony Parker to come to Duke.  I'm tired of one-and-dones.  Let them go to Kentucky or the poor man's Kentucky (UCLA) before the six-to-seven-years-late to any party NCAA gumshoes bring the House of Cal crashing down.  However, I was annoyed by Mason's flirtation with the NeeBA, Trey Zeigler's signing with Pitt, and (of course) Gbinije's departure - - for Syracuse, no less, so we have to deal with him regularly if he blossoms into a good player.  And while there's no blame to be laid, Andre Dawkins' continuing issues were naturally no fun either. 

But THIS is really good news.  

(2)  I'm seeing the following depth chart: 

5:  Mason Plumlee, Marshall Plumlee
4:  Ryan Kelly, Josh Hairston
3:  Amile Jefferson/Alex Murphy
2:  Seth Curry, Rasheed Sulaimon, Andre Dawkins 
1:  Quinn Cook, Tyler Thornton        

That's assuming that Dawkins can sort himself out and does not need to take a year off.  

You know, if Quinn Cook can get himself aligned properly (and learn to defend), I like the above team better than this past year's team.  For one thing, with Jefferson around, there's no glaring weakness in the "Lance Thomas" department - - meaning, the guy who can rebound, be a presence in the paint on both ends of the floor, and guard opposing players who are in the 6-6 to 6-9 size range.  Remember last season, when . . . we didn't have anyone who could do that?  Well, we'll have to take Krzyzewski's word for it on Gbinije.  Now, a lot of it is on paper and it's very early.  But the small forward battle between Jefferson and Murphy could really be something to see.    
(3)   If you live in North Carolina or follow college basketball via the Internet at all, you know that the "Pack Pride"-type NCSU fans - - you know, the ones who like to run their mouths and are almost as bad as NCCH or MDCP fans - - had suddenly awakened in recent months.  After a really loooooooong slumber.  Yes, all it takes is a doofus like Mark Gottfried, a guy who can recruit but can't coach his way out of a wet paper bag once the horn sounds, to revitalize long-dormant Pack fans, apparently, including some who really make me sorry I wasn't harder on their program during its lengthy vacation.  Will N.C. State be good next season?  Sure - - better than they have been, anyway.  Are they the odds-on favorite to win the ACC?  Well, I don't think they ever were, but the answer now is not anymore; with the transfers of two forwards (Harris and Painter), they needed Jefferson really badly, and they whiffed.  Heh.  Meanwhile, we get a really badly-needed missing piece.  I like this development.

(4)   Weren't you tired of all the recruiting missteps?  I was.  Sulaimon is going to be a special player, but it's been a while since we signed someone like Jefferson.  And we got involved with him late, we screwed up with several other players in the class (Poythress, Purvis) and donged around with the obvious one-and-dones while allowing him to sort of sit there.  It's nice not to have paid dearly for this for a change.  

(5)  So one day Coach K announces that he's done with the Olympics after this summer, and the next day we get a truly elite FRONTCOURT recruit.  I dig.  

Good times - - for a change.  

And yes, I'm aware of the UNC-CHeat scandal.  I'm waiting for it to shake out before commenting further, but of course I want it to ensnare the basketball team (if deserved) just like the rest of you.  Let's have patience. 
Welcome, Amile!  GREAT to have you on board.  

UPDATE:  94.5% of Pack Internet fans (joined by the Usual Suspect Duke-bashing mediots) now say they viewed Amile all along as a "complementary player" and "not an instant-impact guy."  Good.  Sounds like exactly what we need.  We'll take him, NCSU - - no worries.  


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Posted by: ClemsonGuest Date: 1/23/2013 8:27:59 PM  
What. The. Hell. Is. Going. On.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 1/21/2013 2:19:05 PM  
The Miami game is big. A win here could put Duke in a good spot towards winning the ACC regular season; I know it is early, but this is a really good road test. I think Duke has the means to pull this one out, but it will be a real fight. Kadji is tough.

Nice to see Amile play well - need some more of that! Have to watch those fouls though

Posted by: London Dukie Date: 1/18/2013 6:29:35 PM  
Just had a chance to watch the GT game; a few thoughts (in no particular order, and I do not pretend any of them are particularly insightful!):

I liked what I saw of Jefferson. There is serious potential there, and as Stephen Frazier notes, his development could be the silver lining of the Kelly injury. Ten boards was a nice stat.

There is definite talent on the Jackets. If they can keep the group together and get a couple more solid recruiting classes they could be a legit ACC title threat in a couple of seasons.

I was impressed with Sulaimon's quick release on his two first-half threes.

Seth Fucking Curry. Jesus that boy is something when he's on...

I like the "Mason hook". He just had some tough luck on a couple in the first half, but he could easily have been 11-20 instead of 7-20. I would have liked K to give him a minute or two of rest, though, as much to let the team run a few possessions without him.

The week's rest should do the boys some good. I am very keen to see how we do at Miami with some time to get used to Kelly's absence.

Posted by: Stephen Frazier Date: 1/16/2013 9:22:21 PM  
It was obvious to me how much better the team played against NCstate while Jefferson was in the game. And when you look at the numbers it shows; In 12min Jefferson scored 10 and grabbed 4 boards. In 25min Hairston had 8 pts 5rebs.

Jefferson just makes plays that Hairston can't make. He deserves to get more mins than Hairston. Now is a good time to get him prepared for bigger games down the road. In a perfect world, Kelly comes back healthy in time to get back in the rotation w/o much disruption and Jefferson is then ready to contribute coming off the bench.

In 2001, Boozer got injured which forced K to play Casey Saunders (6'11 McDonald AA who K wouldn't play). When March came around, Boozer was healthy and Saunders contributed off the bench....which led to a championship.

I think sitting Curry is a good idea if thinking long term. His body is wearing down and any rest would help because we will need him to make a run in March.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 1/15/2013 4:09:10 PM  
Word (buzz?) on the street is that he plays against the Jackets.

Sheed needs to get back on track.

Go Duke

Posted by: ClemsonGuest Date: 1/14/2013 6:00:02 PM  
One of the ESPNowitalls (and now I can't remember where the article was) talked about Seth Curry playing through injuries and suggested resting him against the Insects from the Institute. Thoughts?

Posted by: Serious G Date: 1/13/2013 3:13:05 PM  
I second that - Duke brought a fight, and had the team used better shot selection and/or was more effective finishing around the rim, they could have pulled this one out.

NCST played well and is a good team; I believe Duke will have the greater postseason success, though.

Posted by: London Dukie Date: 1/13/2013 12:00:32 AM  
Disappointing, but we were hardly going to go undefeated this year, and losing by 6 on the road to a top 20 team without Kelly is a bloody good show. And some nice flashes from Jefferson. So this doesn't really bother me - I don't mind State being good actually - I think it's good for the whole conference.

Posted by: Fats "Lazer" Durston Date: 1/12/2013 12:57:59 PM  
Hoping for the Specter of Sendak to haunt the end of this game...

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 1/10/2013 11:40:25 AM  
Well shoot.

Posted by: London Dukie Date: 1/10/2013 2:43:17 AM  
And another foot injury as well, no less. At least could we have some variety??? This is getting rather tiresome...

Posted by: Serious G Date: 1/9/2013 8:57:57 PM  
Another Fucking injury to derail a promising season...brutal. Hopefully RK has a speedy return and the kids play well in his stead.

Posted by: ClemsonGuest Date: 1/8/2013 5:03:49 PM  
Here's the best news for Duke tonight: Milton Jennings is still a Tiger.

In case you haven't been keeping track, Clemson's first Burger Boy since the early 1990s was suspended twice last year (4 games total) and once this year (2 games, including a few hours before the Purdue loss where there was little chance to change the game plan). Against FSU Saturday, in which we were down 17 and fought back to within 3 with the ball, Milton turned it over on 3 straight possessions in the final 1:30.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 1/4/2013 6:11:28 PM  
I share the concerns about the shortened bench. Don't understand why Amile has had his PT cut...must be a reason for it (maybe). I can understand Marshall not playing vs Davidson due to poor matchups.

For what it is worth, Q Cook is pretty effective in stall ball.

Bring on Weak Florist. Matt - preview time?

Posted by: Stephen Frazier Date: 1/4/2013 5:55:02 PM  
Why has K all of a sudden cut the bench down to two (thornton and hairston) players? SMH...what has Jefferson done to deserve ZERO minutes?

The last two games have been our worst two games all year. Jefferson gives us more athleticism and better defense.

We went into stallball with seven minutes left in the game against Davidson....not panic time yet but just wondering....is this what it's going to look like the rest of the year?

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 1/4/2013 4:39:01 PM  
Jabari Parker's team plays on ESPN2 tomorrow at 6 PM.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 1/2/2013 6:42:21 PM  
Davidson in 15 minutes. Should be a good game. Davidson is apparently a good 3pt shooting team (again) this year

Posted by: Serious G Date: 12/30/2012 7:48:17 PM  
Although Santa Clara is a pretty good team, that was the worst game Duke has played all year. What is with the slow starts?

Nice game by Seth Curry, though.

Jefferson did not play yesterday - fanbase is already speculating transfer.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 12/24/2012 5:54:24 PM  
Well, it has been a great start to the year. Can't wait for league play!

Posted by: London Dukie Date: 12/22/2012 5:52:04 AM  
No Jabari Parker reaction? If he's as good as the hype (and we all know they aren't always) then this is a great grab for Duke. Moreover, all accounts are that he's a quality person and teammate, meaning he shouldn't cause the disruption Rivers did. Now I'm even more intrigued by what Plumlee III can do, as next year he should be surrounded by a real quality line-up...

Posted by: Matt Date: 12/20/2012 12:46:27 PM  
Had the chance to see the game against Cornell in Cameron last night; it was my first visit in three seasons. (Bad fan!) The team looked awesome after a slow start. They are certainly doing their part to get me motivated.

Rebounding is still a concern, but, boy, is the defense, ballhandling, shooting, on-court playcalling, and team chemistry just massively upgraded. Fun team to watch!

Let's TCB against Elon tonight.

Posted by: Stephen Frazier Date: 12/9/2012 10:19:24 PM  
Just want to add some observations I've had about this Duke team so far...

Offensively we are scoring in a variety of ways: scoring from the low post (which we haven't done in the recent past), scoring easy points on fast break buckets (again something we haven't done a lot in the recent past), dribble driving the ball and dishing for easy dunks or driving and scoring layups on your own, and obviously hitting outside shots.

This shows me that we aren't one dimensional offensively. A sign of a good team is that it gets pts in a variety of ways. So if we are off one night from the perimeter, we can compensate and score in other ways.

Defensively this season we are playing more of a containment type defense. Mason is protecting the rim more instead of guarding his guy on the perimeter thus leaving the paint wide open. And the guys are helping each other more than in the past. Again, this is a positive sign. Hopefully, no longer are the days where we play a "in your face" style of defense and our guys end up easily getting beat off the dribble and giving up easy layups to the opponent.

I'd like to see Jefferson get more minutes. He produces when he's in the game. And we are going to need him to be ready in March. Also, any rest we can give our starters is good so that they still have their legs come March.

Overall I'm really liking this team so far. I think we have a chance at making a good run in the tourney this year.


Posted by: Stephen Frazier Date: 12/9/2012 10:02:14 PM  

Posted by: Serious G Date: 12/9/2012 12:41:22 PM  
Good balance vs Temple. Not the team's best overall effort, but a 20 point margin over an unbeaten team is nice.

Duke needs to stay healthy, and a good run in the tourney is possible.

Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 12/8/2012 2:19:05 PM  
Go Duke, beat Temple!

Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 11/28/2012 11:17:55 PM  
Matt, please do an in-depth piece detailing Jay Bilas' problem.

Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 11/28/2012 11:08:41 PM  
Two different teams tonight: first half vs second.

Posted by: Dave Date: 11/28/2012 10:30:37 PM  
Good to see that our new-found size at the 3 is keeping OSU off the glass.

Posted by: Fats "Lazer" Durston Date: 11/28/2012 10:15:27 PM  
OSU will have walk-ons in the game soon, and Duke will still have trouble scoring the basket, to the glee of UNC-grad ('86) Jay Bias.

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 11/28/2012 9:01:54 AM  
Louisville? Seriously? Whoda thunkit. I'm about one nanometer away from wishing Duke would just go independent. This ain't you old man's ACC.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/26/2012 10:38:54 PM  
IMO, the bench will be playing more of a role after the OSU game. I really cannot see a lot of scoring coming from the bench (although the potential for AJ, MP & AM to become reliable scorers is high). The starting 5 can all provide great scoring #s. What I would expect is good minutes from AJ, TT & MP (when healthy) with consistent hustle on defence and the boards.

Nice start to the season, no?

Posted by: SanFranSoxFan Date: 11/26/2012 9:56:15 AM  
Best I've heard yet? Coach K is "Mr. November"

Posted by: Matt Date: 11/25/2012 5:14:55 PM  
Overwhelmed with my volunteer job and some other considerations. :) Sorry. I did watch every minute of the Louisville game and, while my excitement is tempered by the fact that Duke is almost always the best team in the country on New Year's Day before coming back to earth due to a shallow bench and fatigue, maybe that won't be the case this season. In any case I'm contemplating a page redesign. But there will be new material by the beginning of the ACC season unless something radically changes.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/25/2012 12:05:22 AM  
Big Win...flaws and all, this team looks great!

Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 11/24/2012 10:19:46 PM  
Where's Matt?

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/24/2012 5:56:41 PM  
Cards tonight...will be a battle to keep them off of the offensive boards.

Go Duke!

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/22/2012 6:24:02 PM  
Great win vs. UM. In spite of the score (89 points), UM has a pretty good defense and is a physical team. Great play from the seniors today.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/21/2012 6:35:45 PM  
Although I don't know about the long-term historical rivalry between UM & Duke, the last 15 years have been pretty good, IMO. Saving and except for their fanbase (as noted by many), I will miss these games. Obviously a money move for UM, but I wonder what will happen to the b-ball program over the long haul?

I'll also join the 'Screw UCONN' chorous

Big game against Minnesota tomorrow - I think it will be tough, as the Gophers have some nice talent.

Posted by: London Dukie Date: 11/20/2012 7:01:16 PM  
Maryland to the Big 10 - discuss.

I am no fan of the Terps at all, and their fans have set the bar for obnoxious insanity in the conference recently, but I admit I'm disappointed about this move. In the main, because I'm afraid it will open the door to UConn joining the ACC, and I struggle to think of a program I am less enthusiastic about having in the ACC than those bozos...nope, nothing comes to mind. I'd take Kentucky or the 'ville over the Huskies 10 times out of 10. Blech.

Of course, there's also tradition, history, the desire of the players and the fans, etc. that argue against this move too. But we all know that sentimental crap counts for even less now than it ever did. I remain unconvinced that college sports is better for that fact...

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/19/2012 9:06:04 PM  
Some sketchy defence/rebounding/shooting for much of the 1st half, but fortunately they made the huge run late in the 1st half. Mason was good and Ryan played tough around the net. I also liked what Cook - Sheed - Jefferson brought to the game.

Cook is improving in many aspects of the game...just too many turnovers lastnight.

Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 11/18/2012 8:15:33 PM  
Anyone watching?

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/16/2012 1:52:09 PM  
Our front line could (should?) be pretty damn good this year. Little worried about the backcourt health/depth situation but hopefully they can weather the storm.

Time for the Battle for Atlantis - Minnesota will be tough

Posted by: London Dukie Date: 11/15/2012 6:15:55 PM  
Just watched the game - definitely agree that Sulaimon has serious potential. Bad shooting percentage but there were some good looks in there that just didn't go down. I wonder if we'll see him running the point at times this season? I'm still not sold on either Cook or Thornton at the PG position, although I appreciate it's still early. And it was good for the team to play a few minutes without Mason against a good team; my keen psychic sense me that won't be the only time this season he gets in foul trouble 25 feet from the rim...

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/14/2012 8:27:07 PM  
Good game lastnight.Mason, Ryan Kelly, Seth, Cook and Josh played well.

I am very excited about #14 - had a bad shooting night, but he was so effective in other areas. Love his attitude.

Will be interesting to see how Amile/Murph/Marshall develop over the course of the year.

Posted by: ClemsonGuest Date: 11/14/2012 12:19:42 AM  
I caught most of the game on the radio and a Kentucky station. Observations, besides feeling hungry from all the Skyline Chili commercials:

The UK announcers rarely raised their voices in excitement. A couple of Poythress dunks and one fast break right after a Cats timeout, but other than that, they were rather monotone (I got home to watch the last 4 minutes ... sharp contrast to Vitale's melodious tones)

The analyst used the phrase "classic Duke flop" 3 times. I wonder how they referred to Tyler Hansbot in those games a few years ago.

Nice win! Kind of a must-win though, with UK's one-and-dones still settling in.

Posted by: blueflame Date: 11/13/2012 10:39:43 PM  
Duke vs. Sleeze-ball U (U.K.) @ half - at least there is a semblance of defense, and some team chemistry. See ya Rivers - no tears.

Posted by: Dan Smith Date: 11/13/2012 10:11:01 PM  
Someone please tell Josh that he does not need to shoot the ball every time he touches it

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/12/2012 9:20:38 PM  
Looking forward to Tuesday night - should be awesome

Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 11/10/2012 10:28:57 AM  
Due to work, I sadly missed last night's game but it's good to be back! Go Duke and I'll be there in Atlanta.

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 11/10/2012 9:00:30 AM  
I for one am glad that K has dispensed with the usual "We have to go inside more" malarkey and just jumped right into small ball. I never thought Murphy and Jefferson would amount to much anyway.

Posted by: Serious G Date: 11/9/2012 10:31:51 PM  
Well, they looked ok. Mason dominated (as he should), Seth placed ok (with injury?), and Tyler was nails tough. Pretty excited about Amile...another in the great line Blue Devils wearing #21.

Quinn's D looked pretty good IMO. He was a bit anxious on offense, but it seems he understands team D much better this time around.

Go Duke!

Posted by: Josh Date: 11/9/2012 7:06:59 PM  
Tip off! I'm holding a may-puke-again-at-any-moment son in my other arm, so I probably won't have more comments after this one, but it feels great to see Duke back in action again! Looking forward to another fun season at dukies.com!

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 11/9/2012 3:32:06 PM  
Here's an interesting Taylor King story. Lends a little perspective to his crooked path.


Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 11/7/2012 8:46:56 AM  
More Curry injury non information. Apparently, Duke's reputation for cutting edge medicine is a bit puffed up. They just don'r know what the problem with the leg is other than that it hurts.


Posted by: Matt Date: 11/2/2012 6:36:52 PM  
See? Nifty. For now.

Posted by: Matt Date: 11/1/2012 2:50:48 PM  
Just assume he's out for the year, as Krzyzewski has dropped the Iron Injury Information Curtain at a pretty early juncture this campaign. I mean, honestly: if you assumed that Ryan Kelly was done for the season last year after he got hurt, which he was, no matter what nonsense Duke was spewing, wasn't your life easier? So just do the same for Curry here, and if he comes back, nifty.

Posted by: blueflame Date: 10/31/2012 4:50:37 PM  
Does anyone know what Seth Curry's mysterious "lower leg" injury really is?

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 10/16/2012 9:00:24 AM  
And so it begins. Marshall Plumlee has a stress fracture in his foot. http://blogs.newsobserver.com/dukenow/duke-f-marashall-plumlee-out-6-8-weeks

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 10/10/2012 5:01:37 PM  
Andre Dawkins tidbit -- http://blogs.newsobserver.com/dukenow/andre-dawkins-will-not-practice-this-year

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 9/10/2012 9:19:16 AM  
More recruiting stuff.


Hey Matt. Any double secret inside lawyer thoughts on the Lance Thomas brouhaha? I'm feeling a bit worried about it.

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 8/9/2012 8:34:09 AM  
Here's an interesting, and ongoing, college coach's poll.

Most Overrated Coach -- http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/blog/eye-on-college-basketball/19753693/critical-coaches-who-is-the-most-overrated-coach-in-the-country

Most Coveted Player -- http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/blog/eye-on-college-basketball/19738540/critical-coaches-whos-the-most-coveted-player-in-college-hoops

Most Underrated Coach -- http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/blog/eye-on-college-basketball/19745784/critical-coaches-who-is-the-most-underrated-coach-in-america

Posted by: SanFranSoxFan Date: 7/7/2012 5:41:18 PM  
Looking forward to it, Matt. If the Olympics go well, K's last few seasons should be a lot of fun.

Posted by: Matt Date: 7/1/2012 4:48:48 AM  
Rodney Hood to Duke!!!!!!!!! Wow!!

Now this is getting exciting. I'll write a full article with thoughts on Sunday or Monday.

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 6/27/2012 9:13:22 AM  
Dawkins on the redshirt. Nothing new here, really.


Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 6/21/2012 5:15:33 PM  
Looks like Dawkins redshirting is official.


Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 6/10/2012 12:12:01 PM  
That's a great video CDG, if it is what I assume based on the URL. And I am led to believe that "Uncle Drew" conceived and directed it.

Posted by: CDG Date: 6/9/2012 10:27:38 PM  
Hey everyone,

Here's a fun little video that should bring a smile to your faces (well, it did mine). Only thing missing: a role for Nolan. :) Apologies if this is old - I just saw it (blame Canada).


Posted by: Mark Buckner Date: 5/30/2012 8:11:38 PM  
"Good times - - for a change"

My Gawd! A Morrissey/Smiths reference?! Mega!

Posted by: Matt Date: 5/26/2012 8:13:35 PM  
Stephen: then stop! ;) I'm just kidding. I'm enjoying the discussion and respect your views.

There's another thing that changed last season. El Sid wasn't around anymore. Not sure if you watched C.J. Leslie in prep school vids or in all-star games and such but . . . the kid was clearly jaking it as a freshman. Word behind the scenes was that he, Brown and Howell could not stand Lowe. He leaves and - - huge surprise! Those guys start contributing and living up to their potential. Gottfried had nothing to do with it; sorry to disagree with ya.

Yeah, I didn't really want to get into criticizing Painter's reasons for transferring, but since you brought it up . . . he's from the Norfolk area. That's almost exactly a three-hour drive from Raleigh; I've done it. So in order to get "closer to home" for his mom and his grandmother, and assuming he's staying in Div I (heh - - he is), Painter will have to transfer to Old Dominion, Hampton (yeah, right), William & Mary, Maryland-Eastern Shore (snicker) or one of the Richmond schools (and all but ODU and Hampton will only cut about 90 minutes off his current distance from home). That's it. That's his potential list to be closer. Even George Mason would actually be a longer drive.

Not saying I don't wish his mother and grandmother the best; I do. But . . . I simply don't buy it. Now that the rules support a waiver of the sit-out year, kids are going to take advantage. We might have even had it happen to us already. And Painter is a big loss for them - - agreed, bigger than Harris or another departee I didn't even mention, Jaqawn Raymond, but that's still lost depth. They actually don't have even that many players for next season, which is good for Gottfried in a way because he can get out of the way and do less coaching, Roid-style, but bad for their ACC title chances when the competition heats up. But it's all okay. I kind of like seeing Duke third in the projected ACC standings and hope the mediots follow suit in the preseason. Maybe K will get kicked in the ass a little. In any event, not getting Amile was a HUGE blow to NCSU and a further referendum on Gotty.

El Guapito, great commentary on Lutz. It's funny to me how this new profession has cropped up of guys who are Failed Head Coaches But Can Still Help Out in a Limited Way. I'll call it Steve Robinson Syndrome just for fun.

Posted by: Fats "Lazer" Durston Date: 5/26/2012 8:04:25 PM  
Sorry, T. Randall. It was Haslem's flagrant on Hansbrough after Hansbrough committed a flagrant--strikingly reminiscent of Gerald Henderson's on the Traveller--on Wade. (Was also tickled by two straight travelling calls on Tyler earlier in the series.)

Posted by: Stephen Frazier Date: 5/24/2012 9:15:22 PM  
Matt, I'm a duke guy so I hate to be put in a position where I'm defending Gottfried.

However... here we go.

He was a bad coach at bama. no doubt about that. but it appears he learned something while out of the profession. The same state team that Gottfried led to the sweet 16 only a year earlier looked like they didn't know how to play organized bball, had horrible attitudes and showed no heart/effort on the court.

Only one thing changed between that year and last year when they made the sweet 16 run. I don't know if it is Gottfried or the assistant coaches who should get the credit but it was pretty obvious to me that they became a TEAM that trusted one another on the court instead of a bunch of individual, selfish players.

Also, if memory serves me correct, when they had their best players on the court they dominated last years duke team. The only reason we won that game is because 3 of their 4 best players got into foul trouble and couldn't play as aggressively in the second half of the game. And they weren't a deep team so when those guys went out of the game their talent level dropped a lot. But I guess that's only my interpretation. Also, Painter is transferring because he wants be home, closer to a sick family member. Not sure if it's his grandmother or what. I think the other kid is transferring because he can see the writing on the wall. He's just not talented enough to earn playing time on next years state team.

IMO, objectively speaking, they should be the best team in the ACC next year.

However, with the addition of Jefferson and Sulimon I think we should have enough athleticism to defend them so it should be a good game.

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 5/24/2012 5:01:50 PM  
Fats, I can't start watching it. The link is to a private video. I had no idea there was such a thing on youtube.

Posted by: Fats "Lazer" Durston Date: 5/23/2012 10:48:47 AM  
I just can't stop watching this:

Posted by: KD Date: 5/22/2012 1:06:07 PM  
Matt et al.: Thanks for a little late spring/early summer banter. And special thanks to Amile for giving the Duke nation something to get excited about. Although the cynic in me wonders how our coaching staff will handle this kind of talent (seems like it has been forever, doesn't it?), I am really looking forward to a new dimension to our team. Hope springs eternal!

Posted by: El Guapito Date: 5/16/2012 9:06:09 PM  
Gottfried obtained his wins due to the fact that he hired Bobby Lutz and bought in to his switching defenses scheme. (of course if he bought into the offensive strategy of Lutz that would be easily defended) Lutz was better as an assistant with Melvin Watkins than as a head coach. To his credit he is well educated and intelligent. But if anyone believes that Gottfried cannot crap all over himself, I submit to you exhibit 1, Semi-Final Game of the ACC Tournament or exhibit 2 Duke/State regular season game.

Very excited about Jefferson. You cannot win or compete for Championships with guards and big men alone. Utility players are present on every Duke Championship team (and frankly every successful program)

Posted by: Matt Date: 5/16/2012 8:09:15 PM  
Stephen, when it comes to sleeping on Gottfried, I'm afraid you can call me "Rip van Winkle" and wake me when the guy does something or gets fired. He's a garbage coach, bad enough to get fired by Alabama, which isn't easy to do. He was verrrrrry very lucky that NCSU was so desperate, and were turned down by almost everyone to whom they talked.

He is a very good recruiter and arguably the worst operational coach in the conference - - well, non-Bzzkillick division, anyway. Remember our home game against them last season? Any other coach (again, save Bzoffick) in the ACC would have figured out how to win that game for the Pack - - but he was just totally lost. He might as well have been four counties away, locked in a basement. There were numerous other examples of him failing to coach properly during the season; I saw them play an inordinate amount of times, for whatever reason.

It's not really a matter of him taking Lowe's players and turning them into some force; it's more a matter of those players finally caring, because they didn't play for an abject idiot even stupider than Gottfried and with no credentials to be a head coach, and putting it all together. Also, Gotty had the "smarts" to put the ball in one point guard's hands instead of three (lol) as Lowe tried to do, and Howell and Brown finally woke up and reached their potential, or close to it. Also, Leslie couldn't stand Lowe and suddenly started playing like a team guy without El Sid to kick around.

I give Gottfried credit for absolutely none of this.

Moreover, the guy has a terrible personality; he drove Harrow away and now Painter and Harris left, neither for particularly good reasons. He's firmly from the Jim Harrick school of player-coach relations, and as we've seen with Harrick himself and Lavin, that strategy only works to a point. Romar seems to be the exception.

One more note about the Pack - - they'll miss C.J. Williams, mostly on the defensive end, terribly next season. They are already, and will be in the preseason if trend hold, drastically overrated. That's annoying to me, and that's one of the (lesser) reasons that I am beyond thrilled about Jefferson's signing.

Posted by: Matt Date: 5/16/2012 8:00:22 PM  
Fats, you're right - - I should have put Hairston at the 4 on the chart. Corrected.

Posted by: Matt Date: 5/16/2012 7:59:59 PM  
Whoops!! See what happens when I post too quickly? Erg.

ALEX Murphy - - currently starring in Finland. Sorry, Alex!

Posted by: Stephen Frazier Date: 5/16/2012 5:43:59 PM  
It's definitely nice to hear some good news about the program in the offseason. Marshall's not ready to contribute yet but it would be nice to see an "athletic" lineup on the court next season who can defend.

5 Mason
4 Jefferson
3 Murphy
2 Sulimon
1 Cook

Also...don't sleep on Gottfreid. He showed us all how bad Sidney Lowe really was. Lowe was a good recruiter who couldn't coach. Gottfreid showed last year that he can coach when he took Lowe's players and turned them into a contender. He also showed he can recruit by bringing in good talent for next season. This guy is going to be around for awhile.

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 5/16/2012 2:00:21 PM  
Austin Murphy?

Posted by: T. Randall Taylor Date: 5/16/2012 1:00:01 PM  
Matt, I agree with everything you've said. I might even go so far as to say that the loss of Rivers may well be addition by subtraction. Nothing at all against the kid; I just think that he has more of a pro style game and never really meshed with the rest of the team. (And Sulaiman seems like the real deal.) I don't fault him AT ALL for effort. He just wasn't the kind of player that has a natural feel for getting everyone else involved.

If Jefferson can step into the role that I envisioned for Mike G. them we should have a pretty complete team. I agree with Fats that Hairston is more of a power guy at this point.

I predict that Duke will enter the season underrated by the national media. A nice change pf pace.

Posted by: Fats "Lazer" Durston Date: 5/16/2012 11:29:13 AM  
I don't see Josh at the 3, myself.

This is surely good news if the requisite bench-shrinkage isn't too extensive next year.

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