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Better late than never

(04/20/22 4:00am)

I’ve had an interest in writing about sports from a young age, growing up with my eyes glued to the TV for my hometown Steelers’ final two Super Bowl wins and watching DVR recordings of ESPN’s First Take the second I came home from school. My mom hated the screaming voice of Stephen A. Smith, but I loved every minute of sports coverage and debate.

Take of the week: UNC's Hubert Davis has set the bar high for Jon Scheyer

(03/31/22 4:31pm)

The buzzer sounds, and 3,263 North Carolina fans raucously celebrate in the Dean Smith Center. After a 2020-21 season overshadowed by limited fan attendance, COVID-19 protocols and masked student sections, North Carolina men's basketball emerged victorious 91-73 in its final game of the regular season against its fiercest rival. But the excitement came with a catch: legendary head coach Roy Williams got down on his knees and tearfully kissed the ground, a gesture the world would eventually learn was in honor of his final time on the court that bears his own name.

Five observations from Duke men's basketball's first half against Florida State

(02/20/22 12:04am)

Coming off a thrilling 76-74 win against Wake Forest, Duke engaged in a back-and-forth first 20 minutes against Florida State Saturday. The Seminoles got off to a hot start from the field, but Duke got it going at the end of the half to take a 52-41 lead into the break. Here are five observations from the action so far.

Column: AJ Griffin is flying, now it's time to sit back and watch him soar

(02/07/22 6:25pm)

Duke has played four games since I wrote “Let Griffin Fly” Jan, 25. I’ll admit that he didn’t look great during the two-point crunchtime win against Clemson. One-of-7 for two points with just three rebounds to boot probably marked his worst performance as a Blue Devil. Less than 12 hours after I advocated for freshman guard AJ Griffin’s shooting to be the key focal point of the offense over generating more opportunities for Paolo Banchero. I feared that my column hadn’t even survived a single game. When it comes to the development of young talent, however, patience is always a virtue and like a fine wine, Griffin has only gotten better with age.

Could Duke men's basketball's Paolo Banchero or Wendell Moore Jr. win the Wooden Award?

(01/16/22 9:29pm)

At the beginning of January, the Los Angeles Athletic Club released the annual midseason watch list for the John R. Wooden Award for college basketball’s most outstanding player. With Duke men's basketball tied for the second-most players on the list, the Blue Zone takes a look at the two star Blue Devils to make it and their chances of taking home the award at season's end:

Small ball lineup lifts Duke men's basketball past Virginia Tech

(12/23/21 6:55pm)

The Cameron Crazies packed into Cameron Indoor Stadium for an ACC contest for the first time since March 2020. The Wednesday game kicked off with a rambunctious winter break crowd, players decked out in the newly revealed "Cameron Brotherhood" jerseys and a nine-point lead for Duke—but something quickly went awry.

Five observations from Duke men's basketball's first half against Elon

(12/18/21 9:53pm)

After two cancellations due to COVID issues in opposing programs, Duke hosted Elon Saturday in its last nonconference game of the season. The Blue Devils picked up right where they left off from their last game, and are out to a 44-26 lead at the half. Here’s five of our observations from the opening 20 minutes.

Three points: Minutes off the bench, size advantage will help Blue Devils achieve victory against Elon

(12/18/21 4:52pm)

No. 2 Duke men's basketball is set to play their third matchup in five days Saturday afternoon in Cameron Indoor Stadium. After two opponent cancellations due to COVID-19 protocols, Duke will now face an Elon squad hungry to end their seven-game losing streak against the Blue Devils: