Texas Southern Tigers
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Texas Southern Tigers
Duke is leaving campus, but still staying at home.
Monday through Thursday this week, The Blue Zone will be breaking down each region in this year's NCAA tournament. Today we begin with the South.
Two-way players in sports don't come along often, especially in baseball. The best players in Little League will play both pitcher and shortstop, but the versatility required to do so at the college or professional level is exceedingly rare in an age of increasing specialization. Even more infrequent is the player who can not only take the field at two of the game’s most critical positions, but excel at each.
CHAPEL HILL—Some days, the opposing pitcher has his best stuff and there just isn’t much to be done about it offensively.
The Tobacco Road Rivalry is known for its legendary contests on the basketball court, but this weekend Duke and North Carolina will take their battles to the baseball diamond as well.
It may have taken a little longer than expected, but Duke still emerged from the weekend with the results it wanted.
Despite Mother Nature’s apparent wishes, the Blue Devils are going to continue to try to play baseball.
With the health of star freshman Jahlil Okafor still very much up in the air, the No. 4 Blue Devils (24-3, 11-3 in the ACC) will look to continue their strong play and extend their seven-game winning streak Wednesday night when they travel to Blacksburg, Va., to take on Virginia Tech (10-17, 2-12) at Cassell Coliseum, with tip-off scheduled for 9 p.m. Duke has just four regular season games remaining before the ACC tournament play begins, and currently sits two games behind Virginia for the conference’s top spot. Before every game this season, the Blue Zone will select a player on both teams that could make a difference for their respective squads.
It may not have the hype of the Tobacco Road rivalry, but the Blue Devils know they can’t let their foot off the gas pedal against their next opponent.
Despite the snow and precipitation in Durham earlier in the week, this year’s first installment of the Tobacco Road rivalry will go on as scheduled—unlike last season, when the game was postponed for the first time in history—with tip-off set for 9 p.m. Wednesday at Cameron Indoor Stadium. While No. 4 Duke enters the contest riding a five-game winning streak and will be searching for its sixth victory against a ranked opponent this season, the No. 15 Tar Heels limp into Durham having lost three of their last four games, including a double-digit defeat to unranked Pittsburgh Saturday. Here are three keys to the game as the Blue Devils look to pick up another victory against their in-state rival:
As the calendar passes the midpoint of February and starts to look toward March, this week pitted several conference front-runners against each other. A look at how some of the top teams fared and some likely shakeups in the rankings:
Even though the Blue Devils were playing at the Carrier Dome hundreds of miles away, the Cameron Crazies still filled the seats of Cameron Indoor.
Sporting its throwback all-blue jerseys, Duke narrowly escaped an upset bid from Florida State Monday night, prevailing with a 73-70 victory at the Donald L. Tucker Center. The performance from the No. 4 Blue Devils was a far cry from their dominant 30-point demolition of then-No. 10 Notre Dame the last time they hit the hardwood, but the backcourt duo of Tyus Jones and Quinn Cook carried the team to victory. Cook posted a season-high and led all scorers with 26 points and Jones notched a double-double with 16 points and 12 dimes to help overcome a feisty Seminole squad that ended the game on a 16-7 run.
Following their most complete performance of the season, the No. 4 Blue Devils face a quick turnaround and don’t have much time to revel in their success. Duke travels to Tallahassee, Fla., to take on Florida State at 7 p.m. Monday night at the Donald L. Tucker Center, just more than 48 hours after finishing a demolition of then-No. 10 Notre Dame Saturday afternoon. With three consecutive ACC victories, the Blue Devils have vaulted themselves back into the mix for the regular season conference crown. Here are three keys to Monday’s contest as Duke looks to continue rolling:
With all of the constant chatter surrounding the impact of the Blue Devils’ three marquee freshmen—Jahlil Okafor’s consistent dominance in the post, Tyus Jones’ late-game heroics in key moments and Justise Winslow’s athleticism on both ends of the floor—it might seem as if the No. 4 team in the nation features only a group of immensely talented youngsters. After all, a rookie has led Duke in scoring in 16 games this season, and together the trio of starting freshmen accounts for half of the Blue Devils’ total points.
Ten days after defeating St. John’s at Madison Square Garden to collect his 1,000th career victory, head coach Mike Krzyzewski finally got a chance to celebrate his historic milestone on the court that bears his name.
Despite trailing by double digits in the second half, the No. 4 Blue Devils rallied and handed No. 2 Virginia its first loss of the season Saturday night with a 69-63 triumph at John Paul Jones Arena. Duke finished the game on an 11-0 run to earn the victory and end the week on a high note after a turbulent beginning to it—which included a heartbreaking loss to No. 8 Notre Dame and the dismissal of guard Rasheed Sulaimon from the team. The win helped the Blue Devils avoid falling to .500 in ACC play and marked their third road victory against a top-10 opponent this season.
For the first time since 2005, the Blue Devils will hit the road to kick off the 2015 campaign and their bid for three consecutive nine-win seasons.