Day & Time: Saturday, February 26, 6:00 pm ET
Location: Carrier Dome, Syracuse, N.Y.
TV/Streaming: ESPN, WatchESPN
Duke Blog: Duke Basketball Report
Rivalry: 12-6, Duke
Current Streak: 5, Duke
First Meeting: The two historically good programs met for the first time in the 1966 NCAA tournament during the Elite Eight. The No. 2 ranked Blue Devils advanced with a 91-81 victory over the Orange. George Hicker led the Orange with 17 points, with Jim Boeheim not far behind with 15 points himself.
Last Meeting: If one team shoots 47.6% from the floor and another shoots 35.3% from the floor, it’s not hard to see who won. Unfortunately for Syracuse fans, the Orange were the team that shot 35.3% the last time these two teams met as Duke won 79-59.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Jim Boeheim (46th year, 1,098-421) | Duke - Mike Krzyzewski (42nd season, 1,121–306)
Coach Bio: Krzyzewski played his collegiate basketball at Army West Point under Bob Knight. After five years in the Army, Krzyzewski joined Knight at Indiana as an assistant for one season before taking the Army head coaching job. He then took the Duke head coaching job after five seasons at Army.
After Krzyzewski’s first three seasons, Duke has won at least 20 games and made the NCAA tournament every season except for one season and this past season. The other season was the 1994-95 campaign when Krzyzewski missed almost the entirety of ACC schedule to recover from surgery to fix a ruptured disk in his back. Krzyzewski is currently the winningest coach in collegiate basketball history with 1,184 career wins. Duke has won five NCAA tournaments under Krzyzewski and he’s earned three Naismith College Coach of the Year awards.
Krzyzewski was also the head coach of the USA national basketball team from 2005 to 2016. He led the United States to three straight Olympic gold medals from 2008 to 2016 and two straight FIBA World Championship gold medals from 2010 to 2014.
Last Year: Duke, by its standards, struggled last season. The Blue Devils saw their star recruit Jalen Johnson leave the program early and went on three separate three-game losing streaks. Duke finished 10th in the ACC with a 9-9 record, but rattled off two wins in the conference tournament to make the quarterfinals. However, the Blue Devils withdrew from the tournament after a positive COVID-19 test, ending Duke’s season.
Last Game: Duke survived a typical slow Virginia game, winning 65-61 over the Cavaliers. The Blue Devils shot 48% from the floor in the win while holding UVA to 43.6% shooting
“Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: Paolo Banchero. Do we need to say more?
If Syracuse Wins: Oh look, me and 30,000 of my friends are sorry to see you hold this L.
If Syracuse Loses: Can Coach K at least recommend a good brunch spot in North Carolina for Monday’s game?
Fun Fact: Some guy named Mike in Durham called into Coach Boeheim’s radio show on Thursday night. No prizes for guessing who Mike is.