When Coach K came to Duke he said he saw no reason why Duke couldn’t be a Top Five team year in and year out.
It seemed unlikely at the time but he’s basically done it or at least Top Ten.
Still, the fact that Duke is back to #1 in both polls is kind of amazing and worthy of mention.
It’s not something we always talk about because to be frank, as we said, it’s not a big surprise for Duke to be #1 - most of the time.
But to be #1 after losing players like Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett and Cam Reddish? That’s pretty incredible.
And to be consistent and honest, while we think that Duke could play with anyone in the country, we’re not sure the Blue Devils are #1 right now. We would probably rank Michigan State and Louisville ahead of them.
That’s true for a lot of teams though. Duke beat #4 Kansas which was seen as a bit of an upset. But KU followed that up with a tight game against UNC-G. They did blow Monmouth out but that wasn’t unexpected. They may be overrated at the moment.
A lot of teams might be though. Looking down the AP Top Ten:
#5 UNC is wildly and uncharacteristically dependent upon a freshman. We don't follow #6 Maryland really but Mark Turgeon is still the coach, right? So don’t go too heavily in on the Terps.
#7 Virginia is still Virginia but it’s missing a big chunk of offense and that will become important eventually.
#8 Gonzaga has losses too and #9 Kentucky lost to Evansville for crying out loud.
That leaves Ohio State at #10 and while we don't know a lot about the Buckeyes yet they are very well coached.
And in the short term, coaching probably your best reference point. Until things shake out, bet (not necessarily literally) on superior coaching.
Which means keep an eye on #12 Texas Tech, #17 Villanova, and maybe #20 Tennessee.
Virginia Achievements Since 2014 (Tie In Standings Indicated By T)
|Year||NCAA||ACCT||ACC Reg. Season||Overall|
|2017||1-1||1-1||Fifth (T), 11-7||23-11|
|2016||3-1||2-1||Second (T), 13-5||29-8|
|Total||13-5||11-4||First (4), 89-19||178-36|