Duke is still on the NCAA bubble. Here’s what the team must do to make the tournament.

Like a procrastinating pupil up in opposition to it to get a semester-long venture completed by finals week, listed below are the Duke Blue Devils dashing to gather wins in time for March’s NCAA event.

Young and never prepared for the ACC grind by means of January and early February, Duke fumbled its approach to a shedding report as late as Feb.12.

What’s adopted, although, are 4 consecutive wins which have boosted the Blue Devils NCAA event hopes from a cooling ember to a raging conflagration.

“We’re a young group so we’ve been battling,” Duke freshman guard Jeremy Roach mentioned Monday night time after Duke beat Syracuse, 85-71. “We’ve been through ups and downs. At this point, any adversity for us, we’ll get through it. It’s just been a long season. We’re finally starting to get our rhythm and I’m excited to keep getting better. We’re clicking at the right time.”

In this case, the proper time was the solely time remaining.

Duke (11-8, 9-6 ACC) has but to do sufficient to benefit a spot in the NCAA event subsequent month. But the Blue Devils are actually absolutely again in the dialog and exhibiting they’re able to including much more wins to their resume.

“I think we’ve had a sense of urgency since we’ve lost,” Duke freshman middle Mark Williams mentioned. “Each time you play, you’re not trying to lose. You’re trying to win each game, play as hard as you can and get in the win column.”

Here’s a have a look at Duke’s NCAA event case and what the Blue Devils still have out there to add:

Computer rankings

On Tuesday morning, Duke shot up to No. 47 in the NET rankings the NCAA event choice committee makes use of to evaluate groups. The Blue Devils had been No 56 prior to beating Syracuse and had been at No. 60 final week earlier than they beat Virginia, 66-65 on Saturday night time.

Prior to this four-game profitable streak, Duke was in the NET’s low 60s so the climb has been steep and fast.

At this level, Duke is hoping to get into the NCAA event’s First Four as an 11 or a 12 seed. Other groups in that dialog embrace Colorado State (13-4, No. 46 NET), Seton Hall (13-9, No. 51 NET), Indiana (12-10, No. 52 NET), UConn (10-6, No. 55 NET) and Minnesota (13-10, No. 60 NET).

Duke is positioned in fine condition there for now.

Duke’s case is stronger when taking a look at Ken Pomeroy’s advanced analysis. Based on offensive and defensive effectivity, KenPom has Duke at No. 30 nationally, forward of Indiana (33), UConn (34), Seton Hall (37), Minnesota (48) and Colorado State (66).


The Blue Devils do not have the strongest case right here, even after the win over Virginia. But the Blue Devils still have alternatives to enhance.

Duke is 2-3 in opposition to groups in Quadrant 1, the highest tier of video games. UConn and Colorado State are additionally 2-3, whereas Indiana (3-7), Seton Hall (3-6) and Minnesota (4-10) have performed extra Quadrant 1 video games and have poorer information.

Duke is 4-3 in Quadrant 2 video games, 3-2 in Quadrant 3 and 2-0 in Quadrant 4 video games.

Indiana, by comparability, is 5-1 in Quadrant 2, whereas Seton Hall (2-2) and Colorado State (1-1) have cut up their video games there.

Minnesota is 9-0 in video games outdoors Quadrant 1, which means the Golden Gophers don’t have any dangerous losses. Duke’s 75-69 residence loss to No. 81 Michigan State and the 77-75 highway loss to No. 162 Miami are Quadrant 3 losses that harm the Blue Devils’ case.


The varied bracket projectors are coming round to the Blue Devils as a event team, however the proportion stays small. lists 111 NCAA tournament projections Tuesday and simply eight have the Blue Devils in the subject.

Duke is seeded tenth, eleventh or twelfth in these projections.

Seton Hall is included in 105 brackets, whereas Indiana (94), Colorado State (82), Minnesota (81) and UConn (78) are much more common selections.

On Tuesday, neither Jerry Palm of CBS Sports or ESPN’s Joe Lunardi have Duke of their brackets. Lunardi has Duke as one in every of the first 4 groups out of the subject, which means he has the Blue Devils between seeds 69-72 for the 68-team subject.

What’s subsequent

The work Duke turned in over the final 4 video games was substantial however there’s extra to do.

The Blue Devils shut their residence schedule on Saturday in opposition to Louisville (11-5, 6-4 ACC), which tasks as a Quadrant 2 sport as a result of the Cardinals are presently No. 53 in the NET.

Duke will get Quadrant 1 alternatives in the remaining week of the common season, taking part in at Georgia Tech (No. 49 NET) and North Carolina (No. 33 NET).

The ACC event in Greensboro follows. Duke is presently in fifth place and doesn’t but qualify for a double-bye into the event quarterfinals. So the Blue Devils may have an opportunity to play 4 video games in the event and additional enhance their resume.

Back in 2017, Duke turned the first ACC team to win 4 video games in 4 days to win the ACC championship and earn the league’s computerized bid. Doing that, after all, would make all the bubble conversations moot.

Related tales from Raleigh News & Observer

Steve Wiseman has lined Duke athletics since 2010 for the Durham Herald-Sun and Raleigh News & Observer. He positioned second in each beat writing and breaking information in the 2019 Associated Press Sports Editors nationwide contest. Previously, Steve labored for The State (Columbia, SC), Herald-Journal (Spartanburg, S.C.), The Sun Herald (Biloxi, Miss.), Charlotte Observer and Hickory (NC) Daily Record overlaying beats together with the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints, University of South Carolina athletics and the S.C. General Assembly. He’s received quite a few state-level press affiliation awards. Steve graduated from Illinois State University in 1989.

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