For the last 10 years or so, Duke has made it a tradition to play the D-II champions in an exhibition game. That’s been a lot of fun and it’s exposed us to a wonderful program in Northwest Missouri State.
We’ve talked before about how ludicrous it is that no one has made a serious run at Ben McCollum. He’s led NWMS to three national champions in the last five years (remember there was no tournament in 2019-20 due to Covid) and in those four years his record is 159-6.
The man is in Wooden territory. We can’t believe his name never comes up in searches.
Anyway, the Bearcats won’t make it to Cameron this year because Duke felt it was better to schedule a scrimmage against Villanova instead to get more high-level work in prior to the regular season.
McCollum has nothing but good things to say about Duke and Mike Krzyzewski in this article. Check this out: “It was awesome. Cameron Indoor, it rivals Allen Fieldhouse, just so much history. And then the way they treat you — particularly, Coach K — just treated us fantastic...They show you respect. They look you in the eyes when they shake hands. They just don’t disrespect this level. They don’t disrespect the play. So it was an awesome experience, and that is because of the way we were treated when we went there.”
We’d love to see them in Cameron again and at this point, it seems likely that McCollum will hold up his end of the bargain.
Or maybe someone will wise up and pursue him. Syracuse will have an opening before too long. They’d be nuts not to at least talk to the guy.