Duke basketball Player of the Week: Week 8

Every week throughout the basketball season, The Blue Zone will name the highest-performing Blue Devil the Duke basketball Player of the Week.

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Statline: Saturday v. Eastern Michigan: 20 points on 6-of-10 shooting from beyond the arc, three rebounds, two steals and two blocks in 26 minutes.

Tuesday v. Elon: 15 points on 5-of-7 shooting from beyond the arc, two rebounds and a block in 19 minutes.

The good: Dawkins has had a couple of very good games this season—Florida Atlantic, Vermont and Gardner-Webb come to mind—but he hadn't put together back-to-back strong performances until this week. In the 35 minutes between the two games 'Dre hit 64.7 percent of his triples, and his 11 treys were the most he's had in a two-game stretch since the middle of January 2012.

The bad: This may be nit-picking, as Dawkins has been fantastic over the past week, but the one thing that seems to have disappeared from his game is his willingness to attack the basket. 'Dre hasn't attempted a 2-point shot since Dec. 16 against Gardner-Webb. When he is shooting as well as he has been it isn't a real issue, but it would be nice for that extra dimension to his game to re-emerge.

The bottom line: With Rodney Hood and Quinn Cook struggling it's been Andre Dawkins who has kept Duke on its A-game this week. Dawkins has been spot-on from beyond the arc and is playing perhaps the best defense of his collegiate career. The Andre Dawkins we've seen over the past week could be what pushes the Blue Devils to the top of the ACC.

Honorable mention: Amile Jefferson has been playing very well of late, setting a career-high with 14 rebounds last Saturday against Eastern Michigan. Rasheed Sulaimon's past two games have shown a marked improvement from his struggles earlier this season, averaging 12 points per game in the week. As always, Jabari Parker was one of the best players on the floor, averaging 17.5 points and 9.0 rebounds per game in his past two appearances.


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