#7 Duke Blue Devils (3-1) vs. Bellarmine Knights (2-2)
Game #5 • Home Game #4 • Monday, Nov. 21 • 8:30 p.m. ET
Cameron Indoor Stadium (9,314) • Durham, N.C.
TV: ACC Network
Radio: Blue Devils Sports Network from LEARFIELD
No. 7 Duke caps a two-game homestand on Monday night, welcoming Bellarmine to Cameron Indoor Stadium for the second time in three seasons. The Blue Devils are coming off of win at home against Delaware that saw the Blue Hens hang tough against Duke for the first 25 minutes. Duke exploded in the second half to win by 34. As of Nov. 20, Duke is ninth nationally in scoring defense (52.2), second in rebound margin (+19.2), sixth in rebounding (47.3) and third nationally in offensive rebounds (19.3). Duke held a 24-7 edge in second-chance points in the Delaware win and through four games, the team is +46 (72-26) in second-chance scoring.
Duke has been among the nation’s best rebounding teams through the season’s first two weeks, ranking sixth nationally in rebounding average (47.3), second in rebounding margin (+19.2) and third in offensive rebounding average (18.3) — Duke and Alabama are the only teams nationally ranked in the top six in each. The Blue Devils have out-rebounded each of their first four opponents by double-digit margins — the first time Duke has had a double-digit rebounding advantage in four consecutive games since 2019-20. Duke was +19 (44-25) vs. Jacksonville — a JU team that was out-rebounded just twice last season and by no more than two in any game).
Offensive rebounding has been a significant strength, with Duke totaling 20+ on the offensive glass twice already — the Blue Devils hadn’t had more than 19 offensive boards in any game over each of the last two seasons. Through the first four games this season, Duke has a 73-32 advantage in offensive rebounds. Duke held a 24-7 edge in second-chance points vs. Delaware — for the season, the Blue Devils are +46 (72-26) in second-chance scoring.
Individually, freshman Kyle Filipowski is 16th nationally in rebounds (11.0) and is tied for the lead among all freshmen. Filipowski is tied for the NCAA lead with three double-doubles. He was the first Duke freshman all-time with three consecutive double-doubles to open a career and remains the nation’s only freshman with multiple double-doubles (through Nov. 19 games). Freshman Tyrese Proctor (right) is fresh off his first career double-double with 13 points, 10 rebounds and four assists — all career highs. Of his 27 points this season, 22 have come over the last three halves, hitting 8-of-17 (.471) from the field in that stretch.
Duke leads the ACC and is ninth nationally in scoring defense, yielding just 52.2 points through four games. Each of the first four opponents have yet to top 70 points, while three have not scored more than 60. Duke’s 209 points allowed through four games are its second fewest through the first four games of a season in the AP Poll era (since 1949) – the 2006-07 team allowed 195 through the first four games. Of Duke’s eight halves played, the Blue Devils have held the opposition to less than 30 points five times and to less than 23 points four times. The Blue Devils are seventh nationally in three-point defense (21.2) In total, Duke has 11 newcomers on the roster — seven freshmen — all recruited and signed by Scheyer which comprise the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class, and four graduate transfers. Two of the newcomers — Dereck Lively II and Dariq Whitehead — have returned from preseason injuries that held them out for significant time. Lively (calf) returned three games ago and is 6-of-8 from the field, while Whitehead (foot fracture) made his debut vs. Delaware.
About the Opponent
The Knights, which won the ASUN Tournament last season but ineligible for the NCAA Tournament as they continued their transition from Division-II to D-I, is the third of three consecutive games for Duke against reigning conference champions.
No strangers to ACC environments, Bellarmine rolls into Cameron Indoor on Monday having already won at Louisville, 67-66, on Nov. 9 and falling at Clemson, 76-66, on Friday. The Knights played at Duke on Dec. 4, 2020 — a 76-54 Duke win — in Bellarmine’s first season as a Division-I member. As the defending Division-II National Champions in 2011, the Knights played an exhibition game at Duke on Oct. 29, 2011 and fell, 87-62.
Leading Bellarmine’s returnees is sixth-year senior Juston Betz, who was named the ASUN’s preseason Defensive Player of the Year. Freshman Peter Suder leads the Knights in scoring through three games at 13.8 points. He was held scoreless at Louisville, but scored 55 over the last three games.
Scott Davenport is in his 18th season as Bellarmine’s head coach, recently winning his 400th career game (400-132). He has been a finalists for the mid-major Coach of the Year Award in each of the last two seasons.
Bellarmine is a team that has the potential to give the Duke defense fits. There aren’t many teams that move the ball as well as Bellarmine and they don’t need to dribble to do it. They are an interesting team to watch on the offensive end as they are masterful at both moving without the basketball but also doing it purposefully. They are in constant motion off the ball, constantly screening and cutting to the basket. If Duke is not connected and communicating defensively it will definitely be a long night.
Duke’s should win this game but their youth and the mistakes that undoubtedly will come with that youth may keep the Knights having around in this game.
Duke Blue Devils
G Jeremy Roach 6’2, 180lbs Jr.
G Tyrese Proctor 6’5 175lbs Fr.
F Mark Mitchell 6’8, 220lbs Fr.
F Dereck Lively 7‘1, 230lbs Fr.
F Kyle Filipowski 7’0, 230lbs Fr.
G Juston Betz 6’3, 185lbs GS.
G Garrett Tipton 6’4, 200lbs RS.
G Peter Suder 6’5, 210lbs Fr.
G Bash Wieland 6’6, 205lbs Sr.
F Curt Hopf 6’8, 200lbs So.