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Last season there were some absolutely awful college basketball games in which teams struggled to score double-digits in an entire half of hoops. Maybe it’s the high turnover of players due to early entry into the draft or the impact of AAU on the way young players learn the game, but whatever the case, it results in extended scoring droughts.
Even the best teams are prone to unreliable offense. There’s a lot of three-point shooting and very few organized offensive sets. Duke should avoid both those problems.
For one, Coach K has always done an excellent job of balancing offensive sets with just letting players play. The ability to go to a well-rehearsed offensive play helps stem scoring droughts.
The second point to make is that the Blue Devils have a bevy of offensively gifted players and a variety of ways to score.
Rasheed Sulaimon can shoot or drive the lane to either get a layup or draw a foul. That recipe made him one of Duke’s most reliable scorers down the stretch last season. Rodney Hood can slash to the bucket or shoot from outside.
Jabari Parker has an arsenal of post moves at his disposal but can also make a mid-range jumper. Andre Dawkins and Matt Jones add the element of a deadly three-point shooter, while Amile Jefferson and Marshall Plumlee can add the occasional putback from an offensive rebound.
And those are just some of the ways Duke will be able to score. The myriad of offensive options means that the Blue Devils should find a way to score in any given situation.
Against big teams, quick teams or anything in between, Duke has a player with a skill set who can exploit a defense’s weakness. Not every team is blessed with such multitude of ways to score, and that’s why Duke has to be considered a top title contender.