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Next Up - Tech

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Total Sports

Next up is the now robust rivalry with Georgia Tech, this time in
Cameron.  Tech has fit into the ACC beautifully, establishing interesting
rivalries with nearly every school. Few are more intense than that with Duke (UNC
might be).

Tech has a team which presents matchup problems for Duke, particularly if
Battier gets in foul trouble again. He'll probably be asked to guard the much
taller, and very fluid, Jason Collier, and Carlos Boozer will likely guard Alvin

John Babul and Clarence Moore hold down the other forward spot. Tony Akins is
at point, quicker than he looks, and Jason Floyd is at the other spot, and he's
a pretty good offensive player.  

Tech can play a different defense than anyone Duke has faced since Stanford
with such height inside.  The board battle will also be quite tough. 
After what he's done so far this year, we don't feel Carrawell has to worry too
much about being overmatched no matter who he lines up against.

The point is an interesting battle.  After his first two ACC games were
inconsistent, we look for Jason Williams to bounce back in a major way -
particularly since he is a lot faster than a number of Tech players. However,
Tech may well opt to zone Duke, particularly since Maryland had such luck with
it, and with two 7 footers to back it up it's a potent threat.  It'll be
interesting also to see how Dunleavy reacts when he runs into such big bodies.

Vegas and everyone else will favor Duke, and since Tech has had some wretched
performances so far, it's hard not to.  But they did take Stanford to the
wire, and they did give Kentucky a significant game.  Duke lives somewhere
on that hill, neither at the top with Stanford, or down lower with the Wildcats
(where they are at least for now).    They have the advantage of
knowing Tech well, but from here it's not as clean cut a decision as popular
sentiment would have it. Among other things, Tech's season is on the verge of
slipping away already, and not only will this game - should they lose - push them firmly in the
cellar, it will also push their record back to .500.  They can play with
Duke, like they could with Stanford and UK; the question is will they.  If
that Tech shows up, it'll be a question of how well Duke manages defense,
rebounding, and drawing fouls (a way to negate a serious size difference as you
a) get free shots, and b) penalize your oppponent), not to mention scoring over
14 feet of big men.