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Highlights from Sun Bowl coordinator press conferences Christmas Day

EL PASO, TEXAS—The first major media events for this year's Sun Bowl were Christmas Day press conferences featuring the offensive and defensive coordinators from each team. Arizona State's Mike Norvell and Keith Patterson and Duke's Scottie Montgomery and Jim Knowles showed their appreciation for the hospitality of the Sun Bowl staff then dove into analysis of Saturday's 2 p.m. matchup at Sun Bowl Stadium between Duke and No. 15 Arizona State. Here are the best quotes from today's press conferences:

Scottie Montgomery, offensive coordinator, Duke

On a comparison for Arizona State's defense: "We've seen teams that pressure the way that they pressure. From an athletic standpoint and coaching ability, I don't know that we've seen very many teams that have the ability to execute pressure situations and play base defense as well as they play. We know they're extremely well-coached and have a tremendous amount of talent."

On Duke's balanced attack: "We've been one of the more balanced teams the entire year... Read more

Duke vs. No. 15 Arizona State Sun Bowl preview: Defense

As the Hyundai Sun Bowl between Duke and No. 15 Arizona State approaches, the Blue Zone takes a look at how both team's defensive units have fared this season and what we should expect from them Saturday. Kickoff is at 2 p.m. at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas. Check back Friday for a preview of the special teams battle.

X's and O's

Duke: Arizona State has proved it can score with the best of them and ranks in the top 20 nationally in points per game with 37.0. The Duke secondary will have its hands full, as no other team it has played this year has a spread offense that matches the Sun Devil attack; Arizona State excels by getting the ball to its playmakers in space and will likely test the Blue Devils' 4-2-5 scheme on the perimeter early and often.

The Duke run defense will need to stifle the run early and often so that the team can focus on sending blitzes to rattle Sun Devil passers Taylor Kelly and Mike Bercovici or drop their linebackers into coverage... Read more

The Chronicle's Top 10: Jabari Parker and Rodney Hood declare for 2014 NBA Draft

From the field to the court, the Blue Devils provided fans and media members alike plenty of memorable moments. With 2014 coming to a close, The Chronicle is taking look back on the year's biggest stories. We continue our countdown today with No. 7 by reflecting on Jabari Parker and Rodney Hood's decisions to forgo a second season in Durham and make the jump to the NBA.

It was fun while it lasted.

That was the general sentiment many had when freshman phenom Jabari Parker and redshirt sophomore Rodney Hood announced they would take their talents to the NBA following a 2013-14 season that had its fair share of high points and disappointments.

As interested as everyone was in Hood's decision, the entire sports world was on notice as Parker weighed his options in early April. After being bounced from the NCAA tournament early by Mercer, the Chicago native was clearly shaken after the game and many speculated as to whether or not his tournament reputation would be enough to keep him in Durham another season... Read more

X factor: Duke football vs. Arizona State

Duke travels to El Paso, Texas, for its third bowl game in as many seasons to face off against No. 15 Arizona State in the Hyundai Sun Bowl at 2 p.m. Saturday. The Blue Devils will hit the gridiron for the first time in nearly a month seeking their first bowl victory since a 7-6 win in the 1961 Cotton Bowl Classic against Arkansas. A victory would also mark Duke’s first win against a ranked non-conference opponent since 1971, when the team pulled off a 9-3 win on the road against then-No. 10 Stanford. Every week throughout the football season, we’ll break down a player on each team who could be the difference-maker in the upcoming contest.

Duke: quarterback Anthony Boone

The Blue Devil signal caller has struggled of late. In the final three games of the season—a stretch that saw Duke drop two games—Boone threw three interceptions to match his three touchdowns. The redshirt senior’s struggles do not rest solely on his shoulders, however... Read more

The Chronicle's Top 10: Duke men's soccer upsets No. 1 North Carolina

From the field to the court, the Blue Devils provided fans and media members alike plenty of memorable moments. With 2014 coming to a close, The Chronicle is taking look back on the year's biggest stories. We continue our countdown today with No. 8 by looking back at Duke men's soccer's thrilling upset of top-ranked North Carolina Sept. 19.

Throughout the season, the Blue Devils protected home turf, compiling an 8-2-1 record within the friendly confines of Koskinen Stadium.

One of those eight wins stands out from the pack.

Duke hadn't beaten North Carolina since 2006, and the Tar Heels made the short trip to Durham Sept. 19 as the No. 1 team in the nation. In a game that stayed chippy throughout—both on the field and in the stands—North Carolina appeared to be in control, stymieing the Blue Devils on the offensive and breaking through with a goal of its own in the 38th minute.

With 15 minutes to play, the Tar Heels still held a 1-0 edge... Read more

Duke vs. No. 15 Arizona State Sun Bowl preview: Offense

As the Hyundai Sun Bowl between Duke and No. 15 Arizona State approaches, the Blue Zone takes a look at how both team's offensive units have fared this season and what we should expect from them Saturday. Kickoff is at 2 p.m. at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas. Check back throughout the week for previews of defense and special teams.

X's and O's

Duke: Scottie Montgomery's unit has had its ups and downs all year, but was wildly inconsistent during the last month of the regular season. In late season losses to Virginia Tech and North Carolina, the Blue Devils only put up 18 points per game, but in nine wins averaged a whopping 38 points per game this season. The good news is that if Duke plays mistake-free and with a balanced attack it should see success against a struggling Arizona State defense that allows opponents to score 27.7 points per contest... Read more

The Chronicle's Top 10: Ka'lia Johnson notches seventh triple-double in program history

From the field to the court, the Blue Devils provided fans and media members alike plenty of memorable moments. With 2014 coming to a close, The Chronicle is taking look back on the year's biggest stories. We continue our countdown today with No. 9 by looking back at Ka'lia Johnson's triple-double at Old Dominion Nov. 20.

Thursday, Nov. 20 was supposed to be a day to remember for Duke football, with a highly-billed showdown with North Carolina on ESPN in prime-time. Selective amnesia may have set in for most Blue Devil fans with respect to the events of that evening, but for senior Ka'lia Johnson, it was a night she'll never forget.

Playing at Old Dominion—a stone's throw from where the Chester, Va., native grew up—Johnson recorded the seventh triple-double in program history to lead the Blue Devils to a 82-66 against the Lady Monarchs. Johnson tallied a career-high 18 points, dished out a career-best 13 assists and grabbed a career-high-tying 11 rebounds... Read more

Stock Watch: Duke bench trending down with Christmas around the corner

The bell of the Blue Zone stock exchange has just rung again, meaning it's time for another taking a look at who is rising and falling with their performances for Blue Devil sports teams. Each week The Blue Zone will look at whose stock is on the rise and whose stock has taken a hit from the week in the world of Duke athletics.

Bull Market—Trending Up

Tyus Jones in big games: Duke's freshman point guard picks his spots on the offensive end when he decides to attack and be a scorer, but once again, under the bright lights, Jones showed he was going to be in attack mode. The Apple Valley, Minn., native poured in 21 points in the No. 2 Blue Devils' 66-56 win against Connecticut Thursday and has established himself as a big-game point guard 10 games into his career... Read more

Around the ACC: Week 5

The Blue Devils were one of several ACC teams that returned from lengthy breaks and played nonconference games against power-five opponents with conference play just around the corner.

1. No. 16 Notre Dame (11-1, 1-0 in the ACC)

The Fighting Irish extended their winning streak to seven games in a 94-63 victory against Purdue in the Crossroads Classic in Indianapolis Saturday. Sophomore guard Demetrius Jackson scored 22 points—his third straight game in double-digits—and sparked a second half rout by throwing down an emphatic dunk with 13:40 remaining over 7-foot-2 freshman Isaac Haas.

Senior Pat Connaughton recorded his third double-double of the season in the contest, scoring 19 points and adding 14 rebounds. Notre Dame shot 51.6 percent from the field, once again showing how it has managed to maintain the nation’s top field goal percentage. The team remains at the top of the ACC with the win, and will hit the court again on Monday to face Northern Illinois at home.

2. N.C... Read more

The road to Tampa: Women's basketball update, Week 5

It was a busy week around the women's basketball world and the Blue Devils were part of the action.

No. 13 Duke earned its first win against a ranked team Sunday, knocking off No. 8 Kentucky 89-68 thanks to a smothering defensive effort. The Blue Devils had three wins in five days following a three-game losing streak led by center Elizabeth Williams and held the Wildcats to 31.3-percent shooting en route to victory. Kentucky struggled after losing senior guard Bria Goss to a broken thumb and will look to rally before conference play and Duke showed it could compete with the top teams in the nation with a stifling zone defense.

The Blue Devils weren't the only ACC team involved in a top-20 showdown this week. No. 16 Oregon State recorded a strong 70-55 win Tuesday at No. 6 North Carolina Tuesday, holding the Tar Heels to a dismal 27.6-percent shooting clip... Read more