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Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Is Duke in March Insanity this yr? Timeline of the Blue Devils’ first NCAA Match miss since 1995

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For the second yr in a row, Duke will miss the NCAA Match. And, one may argue, it’s due to COVID-19.

A yr in spite of everything of faculty basketball missed out on the 2020 NCAA Match, the Blue Devils may as soon as once more be absent from March Insanity. At 13-11 on the season, Duke doubtless wanted an ACC Match championship — or, not less than, a berth within the title sport — to earn a bid to the 2021 NCAA Match.

Nonetheless, coach Mike Krzyzewski and Co. had their season minimize quick once more Thursday after it was reported the staff had a COVID-19 constructive. That compelled its quarterfinal assembly with 2-seed Florida State to be canceled, with the Seminoles advancing with no contest.

“We’re dissatisfied we can’t hold combating collectively as a bunch after two excellent days in Greensboro,” Krzyzewski mentioned in an announcement. “This season was a problem for each staff throughout the nation, and, as we now have seen again and again, this world pandemic may be very merciless and isn’t but over. As many safeguards as we applied, nobody is resistant to this horrible virus.”

That mentioned, there’s a likelihood — nevertheless small — the Blue Devils may make the NCAA Match, although not in a method Krzyzewski would like. If that falls via, Duke’s unimaginable streak of made NCAA Tournaments — not together with 2020 — is over. Beneath is the whole lot you should find out about Duke’s streak:

MORE: Duke’s season ends and not using a defeat, but Blue Devils nonetheless lose massive

When is the final time Duke missed the NCAA Match?

The final time Duke missed the NCAA Match was in 1994-95; that Blue Devils limped to the top of the season with a 13-18 file, ending the yr with a second-round ACC Match loss to Wake Forest. Duke had a reasonably good cause for its abysmal season, a yr after it made the NCAA championship sport: Krzyzewski needed to miss nearly all of the season — leaving after the staff’s first 12 video games — to hunt remedy to his again and recuperate from exhaustion.

Krzyzewski led the staff to a 9-3 file earlier than sitting out the rest of the season, which included wins over No. 23 Michigan and No. 17 Georgia Tech (but additionally a loss to No. 16 UConn). Assistant Pete Gaudet took over for Krzyzewski, main the staff to its disappointing file that included 4 streaks of not less than three straight losses and 10 defeats to ranked groups. The Blue Devils additionally misplaced two video games to rival North Carolina.

Even then, Duke was at a degree the place lacking the match was uncommon: After Krzyzewski’s Blue Devils missed the match in his first three seasons (1980-83), the staff made the NCAA Match 11 straight years. The Blue Devils gained not less than one sport in each match in that stretch, made six Ultimate Fours, gained runner-up thrice and twice gained the nationwide championship.

If Duke doesn’t make March Insanity in 2021, it will not simply break a streak of 24 made NCAA Tournaments; it’s going to additionally miss March Insanity for under the second time in 35 seasons (not together with 2020).

Duke basketball file 2020-21

Regardless of Duke’s substandard 13-11 file, the staff had a reasonably respectable begin to the season, going 5-2 via its first seven video games. (That, after all, adopted a 2-2 file, the Blue Devils’ worst begin to a season since 1999-2000). Nonetheless, the staff’s two losses got here to groups ranked within the prime 10 on the time (No. 8 Michigan State and No. 6 Illinois).

It was apparent from the outset, nevertheless, that the Blue Devils would not be capable of play a full schedule, as six video games had been both canceled or postponed via Jan. 2. On reflection, the primary Duke loss that would doubtlessly be thought-about unhealthy” got here on Jan. 19, when the staff suffered a 79-73 loss to a Pitt staff that ended up 10-12 (however was 8-2 after the win on the time).

Duke’s doubtless lowest level of the season got here from Feb. 1-9, when the staff misplaced three straight video games to unranked opponents. The final of these losses dropped the Blue Devils to 7-8, the one level within the season their file was sub-.500. The staff’s excessive level is debatable, but it surely might be the 66-65 win over No. 7 Virginia on Feb. 20, the third of a four-game win streak. The Blue Devils ended the common season with three straight losses to enter the ACC Match with an 11-record.

From there, Duke performed a few of its greatest basketball on the season with its NCAA Match berth on the road: The ten-seed Blue Devils beat 15-seed Boston School 86-51, then beat 7-seed Louisville — which had beat them two instances already this season — 70-56.

Duke and NCAA Match COVID-19 protocols

Regardless of saying its season is over, Duke may conceivably make the NCAA Match beneath the group’s COVID-19 protocols.

The choice committee will determine 4 groups — the primary 4 groups out of the match — and seed them 1-4. Within the occasion a staff from a multi-bid league cannot take part within the NCAA Match — after the preliminary 68-team area is ready however earlier than Tuesday at 6 p.m. ET — the NCAA will select a type of 4 groups, in ascending order, to exchange the staff that may’t play.

If Duke is amongst these 4 groups and is as much as exchange a staff, it will want 5 wholesome gamers to provide seven straight days of detrimental COVID-19 exams. It’s unsure whether or not a quarantining participant could be eligible to journey to Indiana in the event that they produced detrimental check outcomes as nicely. Regardless, the Blue Devils must stay on campus and proceed COVID testing whereas awaiting phrase of whether or not it may compete in March Insanity.

Duke had until 11 p.m. ET Saturday to tell the choice committee whether or not it will be unable to satisfy NCAA medical protocols. In response to a Saturday report by the Raleigh Information & Observer, Duke males’s basketball administrator Jon Jackson declined to touch upon whether or not the staff would inform the NCAA it is unable to play.

MORE: Explaining how NCAA will choose new groups to account for COVID-19 withdrawals

Timeline of Duke’s 2020-21 season

Beneath is a timeline of Duke’s largest hits and misses of the 2020-21 season.

Nov. 25: Duke’s season opener in opposition to Gardner-Webb is postponed as a consequence of COVID-19 points on the latter staff. It was rescheduled for Dec. 19, practically a month after the unique sport was scheduled.

Dec. 6: Duke suffers its second nonconference cancellation in opposition to Elon.

Dec. 8: Following Duke’s 83-68 loss to Illinois — dropping the staff to 2-2 — Krzyzewski asks whether or not groups must be enjoying nonconference video games amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I might similar to for the security, the psychological and bodily well being of gamers and workers to evaluate the place we’re at,” Krzyzewski mentioned. “We’re simply plowing via this.”

That remark prompted Alabama coach Nate Oats to query whether or not Krzyzewski would make that evaluation had his staff been enjoying higher (one thing for which the Crimson Tide later apologized).

Dec. 10: Duke publicizes it’s going to cancel all remaining nonconference video games together with Charleston Southern (Dec. 12) and the rescheduled Gardner-Webb sport (Dec. 19).

Dec. 29: Duke misses its first convention sport of the season in opposition to Pitt, which had a COVID-19-positive participant. The groups ended up enjoying on Jan 19, with the Panthers profitable 79-73 at house. The staff’s ensuing sport vs. Florida State on Jan. 2 was additionally postponed.

Jan. 23: Krzyzewski admonishes student-reporter Jake Piazza after his staff’s 70-65 loss to Louisville dropped Duke to 5-5 on the season.

“Why do not we simply consider this sport, I am not likely into what our subsequent step ahead is true now,” Krzyzewski mentioned.

Krzyewski known as Piazza to apologize for the admonishment.

Feb. 15: Freshman Jalen Johnson — a five-star recruit and No. 13 general participant within the 2020 class — publicizes his choice to forgo the rest of the 2020-21 season and focus as a substitute on the 2021 NBA Draft. The transfer is reportedly supported by Krzyzewski and Johnson’s teammates, however the transfer is regardless criticized, together with by Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim .

Feb. 27: Duke loses three straight video games (the primary two in extra time) to drop to 11-11 on the season, eradicating any likelihood the Blue Devils make the NCAA Match as an at-large bid.

March 11: Duke’s ACC Match quarterfinal matchup with 2-seed Florida State is canceled after the previous produced a COVID-19 constructive from a “Tier 1” particular person on the staff. Florida State advances to the semifinals whereas Duke declares its season “over” at 13-11.



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