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This Took A While: Mark Pope Compares Duke And UK

And who would know better?

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Duke v Michigan State
CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 14: Grayson Allen #3 of the Duke Blue Devils puts up a shot on his way to a game-high 37 points against the Michigan State Spartans during the State Farm Champions Classic at the United Center on November 14, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. Duke defeated Michigan State 88-81.
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Former Kentucky star and current Utah Valley coach Mark Pope famously played Kentucky and Duke on back-to-back nights. We figured someone would have asked Pope to compare the teams. We just didn’t think it would take so long. Here’s what he thinks.

“Right now, I would guess Duke’s offensive ceiling is higher,” Pope told “And I’d guess Kentucky’s defensive ceiling is higher.”

He also thinks that Duke has a major advantage at point guard and that Duke’s big men are less “methodical” offensively.

Pope also thinks UK could be the best defensive team in the country by the end of the year. And he had this to say about Grayson Allen: “This Grayson Allen is probably the best player on either team right now. He’s just playing out of his mind. And he’s a senior playing out of his mind.”

Just as an aside, Utah Valley’s players said in the preseason that they thought they could win the WAC. They didn’t get a lot of support at the time. After seeing them we think they are a tournament-level team and one that is likely to be a major pain in the butt.

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