Last year we barely got a sense of what sort of coach Kara Lawson would be since Duke only played three games before the team decided to call it a season due to Covid.
So in a sense this is really her first season and like most new coaches, her early schedules are more about establishing a program than about major challenges. Duke announced the non-conference schedule Tuesday and it follows that model:
- Nov. 4. Wingate (Exhibition) 7 p.m
- Nov. 9 Winthrop 7 p.m
- Nov. 12 at Dayton TBA
- Nov. 14 UNC Wilmington 2 p.m.
- Nov. 21 vs. Alabama & (someone else)TBA
- Nov. 24 Appalachian State 7 p.m.
- Nov. 28 Troy 2 p.m.
- Dec. 2 Iowa ^ TBA
- Dec. 5 at Penn TBA
- Dec. 15 South Carolina 7 p.m.
- Dec. 21 at Charleston Southern 12 p.m.
The event on November 21st is the Maggie Dixon Classic, which will be held in Fort Worth, Texas. Maggie Dixon was the sister of former Pitt coach Jamie Dixon who died far too young of a heart condition.
The best games are going to be against Iowa, which is mandated by the ACC-Big Ten Challenge, and South Carolina, where former Virginia star Dawn Staley has built a hugely impressive program.
Given the rapid reconstruction of Duke’s roster via the portal and the softness of the schedule, Duke should enter ACC play in great shape. And if they live up to the promise they showed in last season before shutting it down, it could be a fun year indeed.