Trevor Keels got the scoring started for Duke (26-5, 16-4 ACC),
but the Tar Heels (23-8, 15-5 ACC) jumped out to an 11-4 lead.
Bacot picked up a quick foul and was put on the bench, and Paolo
Banchero responded by leading Duke on a 10-2 run. Jeremy Roach
would contribute 6 quick points off the bench, as Duke took the
16-15 lead. UNC's Brady Manek answered with his second triple to
make it 26-23.
The Blue Devils were up 41-39 heading into halftime, with
Banchero leading the way with 15 points. RJ Davis led Carolina with
11, and Manek was 3 for 6 from deep with 9 points.
Duke extended the lead to 50-44 just minutes into the second
half, but Bacot went on a run and cut the Tar Heels' deficit back
to two. By the under-12 TV timeout, Duke held a 56-54
The Tar Heels went on top 65-61 at the 8-minute mark in part to
Bacot really getting things going, plus a tough bucket from Caleb
Love. Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski called a timeout at 2:58
after a Wendell Moore Jr. three cut the Blue Devils' deficit to
Manek would connect on another triple following the timeout to
make it 82-74 in favor of UNC, and things started to get tense.
Leaky Black and Bacot quickly scored baskets of their own, and that
about did it. The Tar Heels came into Cameron Indoor and spoiled
Coach K’s finale.
Love scored 22 for the visitors, while Manek hit 5 of 10 from
deep for 20 points of his own. Davis had a great game for the Tar
Heels with 21 points.
Banchero led Duke with 23 points. Blue Devils center Mark
Williams posted 16 points and 13 rebounds. Roach had a strong
showing, too, with 15 points off the bench.
The Blue Devils rank No. 6 in the NET and No. 5 in Adjusted
Efficiency, making them one of the favorites to win the National
Championship. Banchero, the potential No. 1 overall pick in this
coming NBA Draft, continues to play well with 16.9 points per game.
AJ Griffin, Williams, Keels, and Moore also have strong cases as
The Tar Heels entered this one as winners of four straight, and
have moved up to No. 8 in the NET Rankings. They have the No. 25
ranked offense in the nation behind Bacot (16.4 PPG), Love (15.5
PPG) and the Oklahoma transfer, Manek (14.2 PPG). They will need a
positive showing in the ACC Tournament to ensure a visit to the Big
Next up for Coach K and the Blue Devils? It's time to refocus
and gear up for the ACC Tournament, where Duke will enter as the
top seed. In March Madness, the Blue Devils currently project as a
No. 2 seed.
North Carolina sits on the “Last Four Byes” line and is
considered a Bubble Team — although this win will play huge with
While he ends his Duke career at home on a sad note, Mike
Krzyzewski will be remembered for the game of basketball and his
accolades, yes, but also for how he left his mark on
Krzyzewski entered this one with a career record of 1,196-365
(.766). His list of accolades includes:
35 NCAA Tournament appearances
12 Final Four appearances
5 NCAA Championships
Three-time Naismith College Coach of the Year
Five-time ACC Coach of the Year
An induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame
Before the game, there was a beautiful ceremony from over 80
former Duke players who made the trip to honor Coach K.
Some of those former players spoke to our BasketballNews.com
He meant a lot [to my career]. Coach, he gave me an opportunity
to play at the best university in the world, play for the best
coach to ever coach the game," Kennard said. "It was a lot of fun.
I mean without going there, [there's] no way I would be where I am
today. He's great. He's such a family guy. Anytime I have a big
game, he's always texting me like after the game. He keeps in touch
with a lot of his players. I'm happy for him. He's done everything
he's wanted to do while coaching the game. There's no better guy or
coach for everything that's happened to him — he deserved it all.
Happy retirement to him. He's gonna enjoy it now, he's gonna enjoy
his family and grandkids. I'm happy for him though. I keep in touch
with him all the time, and hopefully they can go out with a bang
and try to get him a national championship this year. It's been fun
When a legend says "It’s time," then it’s time… His legacy comes
down to winning. He consistently won in four different decades;
that right there is unheard of. There are so many big-time coaches
that have been in this game, but a lot of them most likely [won] in
one or two decades. Not many have gotten to four decades and had
the continued success that he’s had. I think another part of that
legacy is that he’s created these relationships with players over
and over again, so players continually wanted to play with Coach K.
A lot of coaches get old; he never got old, he’s still not old.
Even heading into his last season, he stays up-to-date, he’s
adjusted to the times and he’s adjusted to the game. I think that
right there is part of his legacy, the fact that he’s been able to
change with the times of this game and not let it pass him up.
He’s helped me tremendously in so many different ways. First,
I’ll start with basketball; he helped me be the best basketball
player that I could be. The way he challenged me every day, the way
he taught me to prepare every single day, how to approach the game
every single day -- those were all lessons that helped me as a
player. A lot of those lessons ended up helping me when I
transitioned into my coaching career, too. All of those lessons
that he was teaching are things that he does as a coach: he
prepares better than anybody, he puts the time in, he watches film
and he dedicates himself fully to his craft as a coach. That’s
probably something that a lot of people don’t know about coaches:
you put that same time in. And Coach puts in more time than anybody
when it comes to his craft. Just being able to watch him and take
notes... I’ve made sure to have a notepad and a pen in every single
meeting with him because he’s always going to give you some kind of
gem, some kind of lesson, that I can take with me and use in my
coaching career when I deal with my players and, one day, have my
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