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Next Up - Northwestern

We realize that the idea of Duke winning in football is a novelty, but winning two in a row unthinkable? Why would Dan Weiderer say that?  Of course it's not unthinkable.  What a ridiculous thing to say.

But it hasn't happened since 1998, so it is, at present, a novel consideration.  But certainly not unthinkable.

That's not to say it's guaranteed. For one thing, Northwestern is still steamed about losing to Duke last year. And they did lay a pretty thorough whipping on Syracuse, winning 30-10.

For another, the weather is a huge variable. David Cutcliffe has a lot of respect as an offensive mastermind, but driving rains can screw up any game plan.  Certainly it makes passing tougher, and holding on to the ball gets a lot harder.

On the other hand, Northwestern was planning on coming in Friday afternoon, and playing in heavy rains and 80 degree weather is a big change from what they're used to back home.

And while Duke obviously wants this game in a big way, as important as it is to learn how to win ,they also have to learn how to take a punch and come back the next week.  As Cutcliffe says, the staff is pretty much walking them through everything at this point.

Having said that, if they do pull off a win this weekend, Navy is not what they were under Paul Johnson, and Duke could conceivably pull off a 3-0 start, which would be pretty nifty, to say the least.