College Basketball 2022-23 Countdown: Number 8 Duke

by John Fanta
FOX Sports College basketball writer

Editor’s note: John Fanta is counting down the top 15 college basketball teams through to the start of the 2022-23 season. Check-in at number 8 is duke.

Duke’s long wait is almost over. All the conversations and questions surrounding the change of leadership became exhausting.

How will John Sheer perform in replacing Mike Krzyzewski? Will the Blue Devils maintain their lead in sports?

Coach K takes the floor at Cameron Indoor for the last time

Coach K takes the floor at Cameron Indoor for the last time

After 42 years and five National Championships, Mike Krzyzewski is finally retiring as Duke’s basketball coach.

Think about this: It’s been over 500 days since Scheyer found out he would be Krzyzewski’s successor. Of course, Krzyzewski’s retirement tour and run to New Orleans stole the last show basketball college season. But since the Blue Devils season ended with Final Four losing North CarolinaThe most important talking point in the sport was the move in Durham, and rightly so. When Duke players walk through the tunnel at Cameron Indoor Stadium for its first game on November 7, it will be the first time in 42 years that Krzyzewski has not led the way.

Scheyer has done everything in his power thus far to prove that he is the right man for the job. He has the country’s No. 1 enlistment classes closed for this season and 2023. The pair of combined classes has commitments of nine five-star prospects.

Moving into this season, the Blue Devils are challenged not only to usher in a new era of coaching, but also to replace the void left by five players who have entered NBA Draft. Paulo Bancheroan amazing talent even by Duke standards, was voted #1 overall by Orlando Magic. Wendell MorAnd the AJ GriffinAnd the Trevor Keeles The protector of elite edge in Mark Williams They are also out to the NBA.

For the 2022-23 season, the Blue Devils have a clear leader in the Jeremy Roach. He’s the team’s top returning scorer, and his leadership at March Madness last season wanted Duke in many situations. The Roach has a killer instinct and will be counted on as an extension of Scheyer on Earth.

Duke’s Paolo Banchero was voted #1 overall

Duke's Paolo Banchero was voted #1 overall

The Orlando Magic team selected Duke’s Paolo Banchero by picking the No. 1 oerall in the NBA Draft.

While the Blue Devils have their leader, the way they mesh around him will determine how far this team will go. Roach will be surrounded by four new players, and Scheer will rely on his new students to perform. This is nothing new at Duke, which if anything has accelerated recruiting efforts under the highly competitive Scheyer.

The expectation at Durham will always be to win a national title, and the Devils wouldn’t get that any other way. While there are a few questions to answer, it’s the sheer level of talent — and a coaching transition that has gone fairly smoothly so far — that is why Duke ranked 8th in the pre-season countdown.

Who’s new on the list?

As Shire said when asked over the summer about the new arrivals, “How much time do we have?”

No one has gone through a roster change quite like Duke in the off season. The Blue Devils lost more than 90% of their goals from last season, and while this was largely expected, this is still a massive turnover of production from year to year.

However, Duke has the potential to quickly reload as one of the most sought-after destinations for any prospective, and the Blue Devils have landed three of the top four recruits in the country, according to a rating by 247 Sports. This team can start up with four rookies along with a Roach.

The #1 player in the 2022 enlistment class is a 7-foot-1 center position Derek Lively II, who has the full set of skills the NBA man is watching today. His tall sporty frame gives him edge protection and defense at a high level, but Lively can do more on the offensive end than many traditional big guys in the sport. By taking the starting position of the Blue Devils, Lively can make things happen indoors, but he can also stretch the floor and hit peripheral shots. Despite being over 7ft 215lbs, Lively has great mobility.

Number 3 ranked probability in the nation Darg Whitehead, a dynamic 6-foot-7 winger who won four national titles in five years at the Monteverde Academy and was awarded the Naismith High School Player of the Year award. Whitehead was recovering from a broken foot he suffered in August, but Cher said he’s starting to work his way back on the ground doing certain activities. The timeline for Whitehead’s return is flexible, though, and Scheyer and his staff don’t want to rush into the only possibility.

His return will be significant – Scheyer said the Newark, NJ native affects everyone around him in a way he hasn’t seen from many real freshmen. Whitehead does many things aggressively, from his defensive ability to rebounding and distributing. The only piece of his game he’s worked on in the off-season is Ocean Shooting. If that area develops from his skill set, Whitehead could be the most important piece in the Duke puzzle this season.

Size is a huge force for this Duke’s recruiting class, and it will be interesting to see how Lively plays alongside the nation’s No. 4 recruit, a 6 foot 11 big man. Kyle Filipovsky. The two chose Duke because they wanted to play together, as Filipowski also has the ability to save space on the floor and take peripheral shots. Their height can make life very difficult for opponents.

As if these three junior talents weren’t enough, the Blue Devils fill five of the top 27 recruits in the 247 athletic ratings with 6-foot-8 attackers. Mark Mitchell A 6-foot goalkeeper and 4 points Therese Proctor.

Proctor, who surprisingly announced in June that he would reclassify from 2023 to this season, attended the NBA World Academy and spent an impressive summer with Australia’s senior national team at the FIBA ​​Asia Cup. Playing against seasoned pros in this event, Proctor averaged 11.0 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 1.7 assists in under 20 minutes per game. The 6-foot-5 goalkeeper has been known to be a playmaker and kick-maker, but he impressed defensively during Duke’s pre-start period and could be a good starter.

As for Mitchell, he is another long-time defender, whose prowess will be a strength. It could be a weapon incompatible with Scheyer, since its size combined with its ability to handle the ball makes it difficult to guard. Look for it to be the X factor in the forward force.

Another student to watch is a four star recruit jaden shota legitimate sniper who shot nearly 40% of downtown in his senior year at Yorkville Christian High School in Illinois.

In the transfer portal, Scheyer made a pair of influential additions from big ten with Jacob Grandison (Illinois) And the Ryan Young (North West).

Grandison was the Duke’s main move. Going from 6-foot-6 to 6-grad provides the much-needed experience on the winger, averaging 9.6 points, 3.8 plates and 2.3 assists per game last season on 45% of the floor. The biggest thing with Grandison is that he can be a well-known item on a list with many questions to answer, and Duke will help out on the ocean. He fired 41% downtown last season, and can also attack the edge and create for himself at times.

Young brings in a veteran front yard presence, averaging 9.0 points and 4.2 rebounds per game last season.

Who will lead the Duke?

Roach is the best answer to this question. By all accounts, the 6-foot-2 petite guard, who starred in the show’s race to the Final Four last season, is ready for the role. In the five Big Dance games, Roach averaged 11.8 points and 4.0 assists per game. He surged in huge moments when the Blue Demons needed someone to do this, proving that he could the guy His team is at a difficult time. His performance of 15 points, five assists and four rebounds in the Sweet 16 win Texas Tech It was as impressive as any of his games.

Roach will lead the ship for the Blue Devils. He’s proven that he can do it in the spotlight, but with a whole new group of guys around him, will he be able to raise the bar for those around him this year? This will be the key.

Best matches to watch this season

There is a confrontation on November 15th with the national title holders kansas in a classic tournament. The next set of Blue Devils Challenges will come during Thanksgiving week at the Phil Knight Legacy, where they will meet Florida or Xavier The second round can be painted Gonzaga In the end.

ACC / Big Ten Challenge is next when Ohio State Coming to Durham on November 30th. Last year, the Buckeyes family shocked the Dukes in Columbus. Jimmy V Classic in New York City will put Dukes against another Big Ten opponent Yes.

In terms of must-watch convention games, Blue Devils North Carolina on Fe will be hosting. 4 before the visit Virginia after a week. Duke will make the trip back to Chapel Hill at the end of the regular season on March 4.

The Big Picture

There’s more than enough talent on paper for Duke to be a top-10 team and do a deep tour this March. What this team will be like in November is not what it will be in March, and that’s the interesting factor going into Scheyer’s first season. The Blue Devils could be going through some growing pains with all the youngsters they have, and it will be interesting to see how the new coach handles all of that. But Scheyer is highly competitive, and has emerged as a suitable option to take on this program.

How healthy is Whitehead, and could it be a major weapon on the ocean? How will front court minutes be distributed among freshmen Lively, Filipowski, and Mitchell, and how important is Young’s experience? Will Grandison make the most of a potential starting point and play a key role for this team? Finally, could Proctor be the X-factor that has been underestimated in the entire class?

These are all big questions, but that’s part of who Duke is when you rely on one talent and do it year after year. Roach’s leadership can’t be overstated, and this will be one of Duke’s most interesting seasons at some point because there is an unknown natural when he’s a new leader on the sidelines for the first time since 1980.

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John Fanta is a National College Basketball announcer and writer for FOX Sports. It covers sports in a variety of capacities, from invoking games on FS1 to serving as the main host on the BIG EAST Digital Network to providing commentary on The Field of 68 Media Network. Follow him on Twitter @John Fanta.

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