Duke Basketball: Who Will Ultimately Replace Coach K?

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Duke Basketball: Who Will Ultimately Replace Coach K?
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

First of all, let’s get something straight. Mike Krzyzewski will be patrolling the Duke sidelines for at least—and I can’t stress the words "at least" strongly enough—two more years. In all likelihood, it’ll be a lot longer than that.

Coach K is currently at 957 career wins. Two more seasons should put him over 1,000. Two seasons should also be enough time to surpass Dean Smith’s record for ACC wins. Smith has 364; Coach K currently has 350 ACC wins.

Then there’s Jim Boeheim sitting at 920 career wins. As Boeheim told CBS’ Gregg Doyel, he isn’t retiring. Though he and Coach K are friendly, it has to figure into Boeheim’s future plans that if he sticks around one or two seasons longer than Coach K, he could pass him on the all-time wins list.

Knowing that and being two years younger than Boeheim, it isn’t likely that Coach K steps aside and makes things easy for his friend at Syracuse—or any other coach for that matter—to pass his record number of wins.

So this article is full of speculation about a future situation that probably won’t arise any sooner than two years from now. And if Coach K stays on for many more seasons, then this problem might not present itself for a long, long time.

Still, in the same way schools make students learn the Presidential chain of succession even though it’s highly unlikely that the Secretary of Treasury—who is fifth in line after the Secretary of State—ever ascends to the Presidency, it’s worth examining just who could fill the shoes of Duke’s coaching legend.

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