For all those of you who are tallying up a quick victory for Duke when Miami visits, may we remind you that last year, Miami very nearly knocked off Kentucky at Kentucky and almost took Cincinnati.Â This is a well-coached team that's been in tough gyms before.
They have a rugged pair of forwards in Julian MavungaÂ (who watched last season as Duke knocked off Butler and his high school teammate Gordon Hayward) and Nick Winbush.
Both are solid outside shooters.
Miami ran a three-guard lineup in their opener against Towson, going with 6-0 Quinten Rollins, 6-3 Allen Roberts, and 6-4 Orlando Williams.Â We expected to see Antonio Ballard in the boxscore, but he might be injured.
Somewhat atypically for whatever the hell a mid-major is supposed to be, they have some size: 6-11, 6-9, and three guys at 6-8.
One thing to keep an eye on:Â last season, and against Towson, Miami is not a high scoring team.Â Last year they only managed 62.4 ppg.Â That is probably not going to get it done at Cameron.Â This Duke team is going to score a lot this season, and it's a fairly safe bet that they won't finish many games in the 60s.
For Duke, there weren't any real problems with the backcourt against Princeton that won't be solved with a bit of time.Â You can quibble over little things, but not much, really.Â And obviously, as they used to say about Shane Battier, Kyle Singler is Kyle Singler.Â If you want to look for a focus point in this game, it'll probably be the Plumlee brothers.Â Mason showed some brilliant flashes in the second half, but Miles had an off night, perhaps frustrated by Princeton's approach.Â Watch those guys, because our guess is their play will be a focus.
Also keep an eye on Andre Dawkins, not necessarily on offense, though watching his silky shot is fun.Â More on defense:Â he did well defending taller players.Â If he can do that, he'll carve out a niche that only Josh Hairston can challenge:Â a fourth option for defending frontcourt players.
And also, if you want another measure of progress, look at overall intensity and communication.Â Coach K has said Duke works on offense, defense and communication. All three showed a lot of improvement against Princeton.
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