Regarding play selection and scouting, it seems Duke was only using half a dozen plays too... If you see a Plumlee standing at the top of the key, it's pretty obvious what's coming next... Seriously, Duke is on TV enough that I think it's pretty easy for opponents to get all the game recordings they need to prep, especially in the digital era.
Overall, the more I think about it, the more I believe this season was one of Coach K's better efforts, last night's upset notwithstanding. As noted by a lot of posters, the team was missing some major pieces to be complete. He built the team around the Plumlees taking care of the boards and giving some inside production, Austin's offense, and 3 point shooting from whomever happened to be hitting that night. Not a whole lot of margin for error in that recipe.
Statistically, our 3 point shooting isn't THAT much of a strength, with a season percentage of .371 good for a rank somewhere around 50 in D-1. Individually, Ryan is the best, shooting at .408, and everyone else in the mid to high 30s (at least above the "Mendoza line" of 33%). Looking at the national stats, you need 43% to make the top 100 individually, and close to 49% to make the top 10. So when the 3-pointers weren't falling last night, I was perplexed when some players backed up even further and kept on jacking them.
I think the lack of quality point guard was the biggest missing piece. I hadn't looked closely at the stats until today, and I was surprised to see that no one averaged more than 2.4 assists a game. I'll have to do some more browsing to see when was the last time a Duke team leader's assist average was so low. In his comments about McCollum last night, Coach K said, "Him being on the floor makes everybody better. So if we could have fouled him out or got him into foul trouble, that would have been the best strategy because he just makes people better. "
My questions: Who is the guy (or will be the guy next season) who will "just make people better?" It's yet another way to think about chemistry. Who's the "glue guy"? And who is the guy who will spread the ball around and make sure it's going where it needs to be? Like everyone else, I've seen plenty of times where it looked like the bigs had their guy sealed but didn't get the ball for whatever reason. I'm fine with that if the ball is going somewhere else and creating opportunities for others, but when a guard is just standing there dribbling the air out of the ball, then he's the wrong guy with it.
This season brought some unforgettable highlights, and the team had some nice wins, and a great win for the ages. For next season, let's see who comes and who goes, and how the team fits together. Every season and every team is different, and I'm confident that Coack K will figure out how to get the most of whatever the kids bring to the table. And maybe he'll come up with a new wrinkle or two after coaching the Olympics again.
P.S. Mrs. Turk is a Lehigh grad, so there's some silver lining for me. And she said, "If Lehigh was going to win, why couldn't it have been Carolina?"
"Quality is not an option!"