NOV. 29 | CAMERON INDOOR STADIUM | DURHAM, NC | 7:00 P.M.
Overall: 2nd meeting;
Duke leads, 1-0
In Durham: n/a
In Rock Hill, SC: n/a
At neutral sites: Duke leads, 1-0
Current streak: Duke 1-0
Coach K vs. Winthrop: 1-0
Duke VS. Winthrop
Duke and Winthrop have met just once previously, that was a 2002 NCAA Tournament First Round game in Greenville, S.C. -- an 84-37 Blue Devil victory behind 19 points each from Carlos Boozer and Jason Williams...In games against members of the Big South Conference, Duke is 16-0 all-time.
Winthrop brings a 4-3 record to Durham and last played on Nov. 25 -- a 124-83 victory over Pfeiffer...The Eagles pulled off an early-season stunner, beating then-No. 18 St. Mary's (Calif.), 61-59, on the road on Nov. 11...Freshman forward DJ Burns comes off the bench to average a team-leading 12.6 points, while senior forward Josh Ferguson plays 28 minutes per game with 11.7 points and 6.4 rebounds...The game marks the Eagles' second in program history against a No. 1-ranked team -- the first was against Duke in the 2002 NCAA First Round...Winthrop won the Big South regular season title in 2016 and claimed the conference tournament crown and a berth in the NCAA Tournament in 2017...Eighth-year head coach Pat Kelsey is no stranger to the ACC, having served on Skip Prosser's and Dino Gaudio's staffs at Wake Forest from 2001-09.
The Eagles leading scorer to date is D.J. Burns, a 6'9 forward who comes off the bench for Winthrop and is averaging 12.6 points per game. Forward Josh Ferguson leads the Eagles in rebounds at 6.4 per game and leading assist man is Chandler Vaudrin who also comes off the bench and is averaging 5.7 assists per game.
Players to Watch:
D.J. Burns may very well not be in the starting lineup but he makes the most of his 16.7 minutes a game, pouring in 12.6 points.
The Blue Devils were clearly distraught after being responsible for the loss of the non-conference home winning streak that spanned longer than some of the current roster has been alive. The Blue Devils were sloppy, careless, inexplicably inefficient and defensively lost. A bounce back game is needed both for confidence and to get the taste of a home defeat out of their mouths.
The Blue Devils are lead by Vernon Carey Jr. who is averaging 18.6 points and 9.4 rebounds per game. Starting guard Tre Jones is averaging 15.1 and leads the Blue Devils in assists at 7 per game. The normally sure-handed Jones is coming off one of his worst games in a Duke uniform where he turned the ball per 8 times despite having 12 assists.
Not that Duke should need any motivation to win but I expect a much more organized and fruitful effort from this Duke team. The Blue Devils have a lot to prove after surrending the number 1 ranking. Everyone will be watching to see how this team responds to their first loss of the season.
Probable Starting Lineups
Guard - Tre Jones - 6'3, 185lbs
Guard - Cassius Stanley - 6'6, 193lbs
Guard - Wendell Moore - 6'6, 213lbs
Forward - Matthew Hurt - 6'9, 214lbs
Center - Vernon Carey - 6'10, 270lbs
Guard - Russell Jones - 5'8, 175lbs
Guard - Hunter Hale - 6'3, 185lbs
Guard - Michael Anumba - 6'4, 220lbs
Forward - Josh Ferguson - 6'6, 210lbs
Forward - Chase Claxton - 6'7, 180lbs