PDA

View Full Version : March Madness conversation: WEST Region



Pages : [1] 2

JasonEvans
03-16-2008, 12:01 PM
Please make all comments about the West Regional, being played in Phoenix, in this thread.

UCLA, Duke, Xavier, UCon

--Jason "I know the pairings don't come out until 6pm ET, but I wanted these to be out there early so we would not get a mad rush of new threads in the moments after the pairings are announced" Evans

wolfpackdevil
03-16-2008, 05:20 PM
This is insane how duke is not goin to play in raleigh

DevilCastDownfromDurham
03-16-2008, 05:22 PM
Won't miss playing in Charlotte though . .

VaDukie
03-16-2008, 05:22 PM
They have to put Georgetown in Raleigh because they can't play in DC. We'll be in DC. Not what we wanted, but not bad at all.

CarrotTD
03-16-2008, 05:22 PM
This is insane how duke is not goin to play in raleigh

As mentioned in other threads, this may not be bad if we get DC - DC has lots of Duke alums, and far less UNC fans in the stands.

BCGroup
03-16-2008, 05:23 PM
and maybe a change of scenery does us good.

grc5
03-16-2008, 05:25 PM
What would be a greater injustice, us not playing in Raleigh, or us not getting a #2 seed? b/c with wisconsin as a 3, it looks like we'll be getting the latter. If I had a choice of one, I'd rather take the latter.

BlueDevilBaby
03-16-2008, 05:28 PM
As mentioned in other threads, this may not be bad if we get DC - DC has lots of Duke alums, and far less UNC fans in the stands.

And me!:D

AluminumDuke
03-16-2008, 05:28 PM
With UCLA as the 1 seed

Chard
03-16-2008, 05:28 PM
Place Duke here. Ug.

Potential matchup with UCONN makes this not so bad. Duke gets either Arizona or West Virginia in the round of 32. Duke better lace them up next week.

Kdogg
03-16-2008, 05:30 PM
What would be a greater injustice, us not playing in Raleigh, or us not getting a #2 seed? b/c with wisconsin as a 3, it looks like we'll be getting the latter. If I had a choice of one, I'd rather take the latter.

I'd take the 2 seed. I really didn't want to be in Raleigh if Carolina is there. We might as well play in the Dean Dome.

AluminumDuke
03-16-2008, 05:31 PM
Maybe working towards a potential match-up with Kevin Love is just what Singler needs to get him going again!

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 05:32 PM
I want UCLA.

Who is their backup point guard? Who is their backup shooting guard?

grc5
03-16-2008, 05:35 PM
I'm more scared of Arizona than WVU...Jerryd Bayless is sick

dbd4ever
03-16-2008, 05:36 PM
A 2 Seed!!!!!!!

ArkieDukie
03-16-2008, 05:36 PM
I don't know much about WV or Arizona, but they make me nervous.

Who else is pulling for San Diego over the UConnVicts?:D

Atlanta Duke
03-16-2008, 05:37 PM
Any thoughts Washington rather than Raleigh might not be so bad (unless you had tickets to Raleigh) given how the UNC fans hung around to cheer against Duke in the pod games (in Charlotte?) several years ago?

dukemsu
03-16-2008, 05:37 PM
Well, it could have been a lot worse.

WVU is a tough appointment. The X-Men concern me a lot more.

grc5
03-16-2008, 05:37 PM
I want UCLA.

Who is their backup point guard? Who is their backup shooting guard?

I agree. The Pac-10 refs have been shielding these frauds all year.

SharkD
03-16-2008, 05:37 PM
There's a shock: Seth doesn't think Duke deserves its seed.

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 05:39 PM
Memo to Seth Davis:

82-58

VaDukie
03-16-2008, 05:40 PM
Overall I like our placement a lot.

Law92
03-16-2008, 05:41 PM
Come to papa!

(Already have tickets for DC. Couldn't be more excited).

Jumbo
03-16-2008, 05:41 PM
I'm thrilled. This worked out about as well as it could have. We have to play well, obviously, or that won't matter. But from a matchup perspective, I'm happy.

DavidBenAkiva
03-16-2008, 05:43 PM
It turned out well for us. A possible second round matchup with either WVU or Arizona, then a looming matchup with Xavier - we went to the final four the last time with played them in the tournament, right?

Has an SEC team EVER been seeded as low as Georgia?

Time flies like an arrow
Fruit flies like a banana

CameronBornAndBred
03-16-2008, 05:45 PM
Wow, I think we got the most that we could have hoped for, and I have been wanting UCLA all year. I think we got gifted.

I would hate to be a UNC fan now..#1 seed, ha! They got the shaft, that is one ugly lookin bracket. Go HOOSIERS, and if not, go VOLS!..lol!

Classof06
03-16-2008, 05:46 PM
I'm very surpised to hear Seth say he didn't think Duke deserved their seed. They went 27-5 and 13-3 in the ACC. Are you kidding me? I'm still surprised we weren't a 2 seed.

Duke's bracket is good but they'll have their hands full. Either West Virginia or the enigmatic Arizona are more than capable of beating Duke in the 2nd round. While Duke will and should be the favorite against either team, they'll have a challenging road, no doubt.

devildownunder
03-16-2008, 05:46 PM
Memo to Seth Davis:

82-58


that game was months ago. wisky has played 10 straight. But it looks like the committee gave us a ton of credit for what we did the first three months of the season. Good for us.

Considering the circumstances, I don't think we can be in any way disappointed with our fate this march.

devildownunder
03-16-2008, 05:47 PM
I'm very surpised to hear Seth say he didn't think Duke deserved their seed. They went 27-5 and 13-3 in the ACC. Are you kidding me? I'm still surprised we weren't a 2 seed.

Duke's bracket is good but they'll have their hands full. Either West Virginia or the enigmatic Arizona are more than capable of beating Duke in the 2nd round. While Duke will and should be the favorite against either team, they'll have a challenging road, no doubt.

actually, what he said was he was surprised to see us get the 2 seed ahead of wisconsin.

DevilCastDownfromDurham
03-16-2008, 05:47 PM
Agree. I was actually hoping we wouldn't end out in Charlotte. DC has a strong Pro-Duke base (esp since there won't be many Terrapins around to cheer against us). I'd LOVE another shot at UCon and as good as Xavier is, there are worse match-ups out there in that spot.

mgtr
03-16-2008, 05:47 PM
I have absolutely no complaints about our seed or about the bracket we are in. If the guys stay healthy, and can hit a few threes, we can so some distance. (That is several ifs, I know).

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 05:48 PM
I ask again...

Who is UCLA's backup point guard? Who is UCLA's backup shooting guard?

I would love to see how they do against Duke pressure.

(Just hoping that WV/Arizona and Xavier don't get in the way)

devildownunder
03-16-2008, 05:48 PM
Wow, I think we got the most that we could have hoped for, and I have been wanting UCLA all year. I think we got gifted.

I would hate to be a UNC fan now..#1 seed, ha! They got the shaft, that is one ugly lookin bracket. Go HOOSIERS, and if not, go VOLS!..lol!

Why do you want Ucla? I think that's a horrendous matchup for us. It would be nice to beat them but they're not on my list of teams I think we'd fare well against.

dukemsu
03-16-2008, 05:50 PM
actually, what he said was he was surprised to see us get the 2 seed ahead of wisconsin.

This was just a signal for what a joke the committee and the country think the Big 10 is.

Wisconsin won both the regular season and the tournament and got a huge win at Texas, a #2.

What did that get them? A #3 seed. Wow.

dukemsu
03-16-2008, 05:51 PM
Why do you want Ucla? I think that's a horrendous matchup for us. It would be nice to beat them but they're not on my list of teams I think we'd fare well against.

I didn't want UCLA. I've thought they were the best team for most of the season.

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 05:52 PM
Because they have absolutely no guard depth. NONE.

Yes, they are loaded up front with Love and company, but you got to play somebody to get to the final four. Did you think they just handout final fours?

If not UCLA, do you think we match up better with Kansas or Memphis?

DavidBenAkiva
03-16-2008, 05:53 PM
I think that there are 7 teams or more that are capable of winning the whole thing, which includes us. My hope was that we wouldn't have to face any of those other teams until as late in the tournament as possible. If we want to win this thing, we are going to have to face at least two teams that I think are better than us. That being said, I really like our chances to make it to San Antonio.

Time flies like an arrow
Fruit flies like a banana

weezie
03-16-2008, 05:54 PM
Can the media blow any more smoke into the 'holes? Showing Paulus getting dunked over in Cameron during their hosannas to the nasty light blue? That's the best clip they can come up with? What about Tbangs dance, that was far more entertaining.

But anyway, DC looking pretty darned good. Not too bad at all.

devildownunder
03-16-2008, 05:54 PM
This was just a signal for what a joke the committee and the country think the Big 10 is.

Wisconsin won both the regular season and the tournament and got a huge win at Texas, a #2.

What did that get them? A #3 seed. Wow.

Let's see, the Big Ten got four bids. Certainly not a banner year.

weezie
03-16-2008, 05:55 PM
This was just a signal for what a joke the committee and the country think the Big 10 is.

Wisconsin won both the regular season and the tournament and got a huge win at Texas, a #2.

What did that get them? A #3 seed. Wow.


Big 10 and or, Big Eleventy.....yawn.

Duvall
03-16-2008, 05:57 PM
Why do you want Ucla? I think that's a horrendous matchup for us. It would be nice to beat them but they're not on my list of teams I think we'd fare well against.

Well, you have to play someone good in the regional final.

UCLA has played four close games in the last couple of weeks, so maybe they're flirting with a loss. But even if not, Duke can worry about them after trying to make it through the first three rounds.

superdave
03-16-2008, 05:58 PM
What time is the game Thursday?

I like our matchups. Xavier at #3 is favorable compared to others and WVU/AZ is also doable.

Super "Survive and Advance" Dave

dukemsu
03-16-2008, 05:58 PM
Let's see, the Big Ten got four bids. Certainly not a banner year.

I'm not saying I disagree. Just making an observation.

grc5
03-16-2008, 05:58 PM
Because they have absolutely no guard depth. NONE.

Yes, they are loaded up front with Love and company, but you got to play somebody to get to the final four. Did you think they just handout final fours?

If not UCLA, do you think we match up better with Kansas or Memphis?

Who are Miami and Wake's backup guards? I like our chances against UCLA, but Collison alone is a handfull...

devildownunder
03-16-2008, 06:02 PM
Because they have absolutely no guard depth. NONE.

Yes, they are loaded up front with Love and company, but you got to play somebody to get to the final four. Did you think they just handout final fours?

If not UCLA, do you think we match up better with Kansas or Memphis?



I think our best matchup out of the No.1s is the heels. ha! But of the teams you mentioned I guess Ucla isn't such a bad choice. It's tempting to say Memphis because I think they are extremely vulnerable to slow tempo and a half-court style but I don't think we have the personnel to exploit that.

SMO
03-16-2008, 06:02 PM
I love our draw and I love playing in DC. Takes a little pressure off not playing in the same building as UNC, feels like an ACC road trip, and the competition on that part of the bracket isn't that great compared to some others. I think the West is the weakest bracket overall. Let's get through next weekend then see what happens!

yancem
03-16-2008, 06:04 PM
All in all, I think that Duke has a very reasonable draw. Either W.Va or Arizona will be challenging but if we play like we are capable we should be able to beat them. I don't know a lot about Xavier but I'm pretty sure I would rather play them than Louisville, Stanford or Wisconsin. I'm not sure that UCLA would be my first choice to the #1 opposite us but they have looked fairly mortal the last couple of weeks and at this point don't know how realistic a F4 run is for Duke this year.

One thing to keep in mind is that 3 final fours in a row is pretty rare and very difficult. This could play to Duke's advantage (if we can return to form and start playing like we did earlier this year).

Here's to hoping that K is able to rest and rebuild the teams psychy over the next several days. A healthy Henderson and a more confident and rested Singler will be needed!

superdave
03-16-2008, 06:08 PM
Does anyone think K will switch things up and move Scheyer/Zoubek/Smith into the starting lineup and bring Singler/Henderson/Thomas off the bench just to get the team feisty? Singler is a little banged up and switching things up could give them a new feel and light a fire.

Tchoupitoulas
03-16-2008, 06:09 PM
Not trying to jinx us by assuming we get this far. But the key is how we do against UCLA's defense. They do not have a prolific offense at all and seem to win most of their games scoring in the 60s or low 70s. Hopefully if we get that far K can figure something out to get our offense back on track.

Tchoupitoulas

SMO
03-16-2008, 06:12 PM
Does anyone think K will switch things up and move Scheyer/Zoubek/Smith into the starting lineup and bring Singler/Henderson/Thomas off the bench just to get the team feisty? Singler is a little banged up and switching things up could give them a new feel and light a fire.

That sounds like an interesting tactic. I think Singler would respond. Typically not a NCAA tourney tactic, but I bet it would work.

Jumbo
03-16-2008, 06:13 PM
that game was months ago. wisky has played 10 straight. But it looks like the committee gave us a ton of credit for what we did the first three months of the season. Good for us.

Considering the circumstances, I don't think we can be in any way disappointed with our fate this march.

The committee also realized that the Big 10 is awful. Look where all the Big 10 teams got seeded -- lower than just about everyone expected.

yancem
03-16-2008, 06:14 PM
Does anyone think K will switch things up and move Scheyer/Zoubek/Smith into the starting lineup and bring Singler/Henderson/Thomas off the bench just to get the team feisty? Singler is a little banged up and switching things up could give them a new feel and light a fire.

I would be surprised to see Scheyer in for Henderson due to his wrist. I would like to see Zoubek get the starting nod over Singler to take some of the pressure off him but then you have Zoubec and Thomas playing together and I'm not sure how that would work.

Jumbo
03-16-2008, 06:15 PM
Because they have absolutely no guard depth. NONE.

Yes, they are loaded up front with Love and company, but you got to play somebody to get to the final four. Did you think they just handout final fours?

If not UCLA, do you think we match up better with Kansas or Memphis?

One game at a time, please. I'll be thrilled with the opportunity to play UCLA.

arydolphin
03-16-2008, 06:23 PM
One game at a time, please. I'll be thrilled with the opportunity to play UCLA.

Well said Jumbo. Everyone should take the Coach K approach: The NCAA Tournament is really 3 4-team tournaments. We have to win the first one this weekend to get to the next one. Survive and advance.

dukemsu
03-16-2008, 06:27 PM
The committee also realized that the Big 10 is awful. Look where all the Big 10 teams got seeded -- lower than just about everyone expected.

Yes, the Big 10 is horrible. Surprising that IU got that 8 seed, though. Most of us in Big 10 country thought Purdue and MSU would be in the 5/6 range.

The real surprise to me (and I'm not saying I disagree) is that Wisconsin-the champion of both the regular season and tourney-only got a 3. That tells you what respect (or lackthereof) the Big 10 gets nationally.

kramerbr
03-16-2008, 06:30 PM
Did I miss them in the brackets or did they actually not make it?

grossbus
03-16-2008, 06:30 PM
i think this is as good as we could have wanted.

still have to play the games, though.

Tappan Zee Devil
03-16-2008, 06:32 PM
both at CBS and ESPN are saying that UCLA has the easiest path to the final four. hmmm

mapei
03-16-2008, 06:33 PM
Best case for me - I already had (good) tix to the games in DC! Now, I need to figure out when the game is . . .

devildownunder
03-16-2008, 06:34 PM
I love our draw and I love playing in DC. Takes a little pressure off not playing in the same building as UNC, feels like an ACC road trip, and the competition on that part of the bracket isn't that great compared to some others. I think the West is the weakest bracket overall. Let's get through next weekend then see what happens!

I never like it when we play in North Carolina. It's much better for us to be in the Northeast, ideally in New Jersey. I know many think it's more valuable to be close to home but playing in front of hostile crowds as a high seed in the first two rounds of the tourney can't be good for the players' mindset, can it?

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 06:34 PM
both at CBS and ESPN are saying that UCLA has the easiest path to the final four. hmmm

Because they don't play anybody until they play us. :)

Classof06
03-16-2008, 06:38 PM
both at CBS and ESPN are saying that UCLA has the easiest path to the final four. hmmm

That's fine with me. Let them continue to say that.

heyman25
03-16-2008, 06:38 PM
We did very well. If we are fortunate to get to finals of this region,UCLA's starting 5 will be a very difficult out. Love and Collison would give us fits. Westbrook is a better athlete than anyone on Duke,and who knows how Henderson will recover from aggravating his wrist again.Love to play UCONN ,hopefully we would win.I think UCLA will prevail.

Duke better not look past anyone. We could lose any game we play if we shoot poorly,no matter how good our defense is. Since the Chapel Hill win,we have looked vulnerable to defeat nearly every game. We don't have the ability to knock anyone out. We get a big lead,they relax get sloppy and suddenly its a game again.I don't expect any easy wins from this team. I will be happy with an elite 8. Nelson has had a great year,but he needs to cut down on the turnovers.Many of his errors start the comebacks of the opponent. I think Kyle and Gerald will get some rest and come back strong. Jon Scheyer may be the key player to keeping this team focused.We were fortunate that we did not play today. I would love to beat UNC, but I would rather have a good showing in this tournament.:cool:

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 06:43 PM
One game at a time, please. I'll be thrilled with the opportunity to play UCLA.

Last time I checked, neither you nor me are suiting up to play for Duke. The players should never look ahead, but we as fans can. Isn't that part of being a fan?

Are you not filling out a bracket this yr? If you are, then in that sense, you are looking ahead.

diesel
03-16-2008, 06:46 PM
I'm worried bty more on the healths side than Gerald Henderson's wrist. Greg Paulus looked in obvious pain a couple of times in the Clemson game from his leg and he has a knee bandage on that leg. Does anyone know what the story is?

Bay Area Duke Fan
03-16-2008, 06:49 PM
I'm sure hoping that WVa beats Arizona. AZ has three top notch players and poses a real threat to Duke in the second round.

Bayless and Budinger are more talented players than anyone on the Duke team (although Budinger has been very inconsistent). J. Hill is a very good "big" and will be tough to handle.

But if the "threes" are falling, Duke should make it to the Regional Final.

gofurman
03-16-2008, 06:50 PM
now I remember - Belmont beat ALABAMA at alabama !!

see above for their early schedule on 11/19

so ASSUMING Belmont ( I don't even like to assume that)... would you rather Arizona or WVU? Who does Duke match up better with? Thanks for any info!

I don't even know what WVU runs anymore now that Huggins is there...

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 06:56 PM
Bayless and Budinger are more talented players than anyone on the Duke team.

I agree they are talented, but you don't think Singler and Henderson are on their level talent wise? Also, Alexander for WVU is a future NBA player with a nice jumpshot and amazing leaping ability.

feldspar
03-16-2008, 06:58 PM
Man, can you imagine a Singler/Love matchup? There's no love lost between those two guys.

FerryFor50
03-16-2008, 06:59 PM
I ask again...

Who is UCLA's backup point guard? Who is UCLA's backup shooting guard?

I would love to see how they do against Duke pressure.

(Just hoping that WV/Arizona and Xavier don't get in the way)


It doesn't matter who their backup PG is. Collison is for real. You think Lawson sliced and diced us...

And not looking forward to facing Kevin Love. But... that's if we even get past round 2. Arizona and WVU are VERY scary teams to face in a round 2 game. Not looking good...

kinghoops
03-16-2008, 06:59 PM
I'm sure hoping that WVa beats Arizona. AZ has three top notch players and poses a real threat to Duke in the second round.

Bayless and Budinger are more talented players than anyone on the Duke team (although Budinger has been very inconsistent). J. Hill is a very good "big" and will be tough to handle.

But if the "threes" are falling, Duke should make it to the Regional Final.

well first i must admit i am very suprised at the 2 seed, but i will take it. from just glancing at the region, the matchups look to be in duke's favor, meaning we dont have a true big team to face, until you get to ucla. hey i have been as negaitve as anyone the past two days, and as a fan i feel i have the right to be disappointed, but now is make up time, beginning with belmont on thursday

CDu
03-16-2008, 07:02 PM
Fantastic draw for us. It really couldn't have worked out a whole lot better. Our second round matchup won't be easy, but it could have been a LOT worse. We match up REALLY well against Arizona (if they upset WVU), and we match up pretty well against WVU as well. Neither team has that dominant post player or phenomenally gifted point guard that can hurt us, and neither are so athletic or so big that we are overmatched.

If we survive the first weekend, we likely get Xavier or Purdue. I hope Purdue pulls the upset there, because we match up a bit better against Purdue. Xavier is balanced and big (they play six guys 6'6" or taller, five of whom score in double figures). Purdue is scrappy but small.

Until/if we get to UCLA, there aren't any teams that just dominate you inside, and there aren't any top-tier playmaking PG (Lavender is good, but not overwhelming). I'm very pleasantly surprised. We won't be facing any teams (in my opinion) of the quality of Clemson (this weekend) or UNC until (if we're so lucky as to get that far).

Let's hope we find our spark again and make a nice run. Maybe, just maybe, we can find a way to get to the Final Four!

kinghoops
03-16-2008, 07:03 PM
I agree they are talented, but you don't think Singler and Henderson are on their level talent wise? Also, Alexander for WVU is a future NBA player with a nice jumpshot and amazing leaping ability.

i agree houstondukie, talent wise, duke has much more than arizona, and i dare to say that duke has much more talent than west va, and i think if duke takes care of duke, two wins in dc are in the bag

The1Bluedevil
03-16-2008, 07:03 PM
I want UCLA.

Who is their backup point guard? Who is their backup shooting guard?

Do you need a backup 1 or 2 with Westbrook and Collison?

Virginian
03-16-2008, 07:03 PM
I think we came out pretty well in the brackets.

On another topic, sorta, I think of the top four seeds UNC is the most vulnerable, given how they've struggled so often this season. I predict -- you heard it here maybe first, that UNC will be at least one of the top four seeds that does not make it to the Final Four. UNC has dodged far too many bullets. Their number is almost up.

And that's not just wishful thinking.

Duvall
03-16-2008, 07:03 PM
Fantastic draw for us. It really couldn't have worked out a whole lot better. Our second round matchup won't be easy, but it could have been a LOT worse. We match up REALLY well against Arizona (if they upset WVU), and we match up pretty well against WVU as well. Neither team has that dominant post player or phenomenally gifted point guard that can hurt us, and neither are so athletic or so big that we are overmatched.


That certainly doesn't sound like Arizona. I don't expect them to come east and beat WVU, though.

Acymetric
03-16-2008, 07:04 PM
Why do you want Ucla? I think that's a horrendous matchup for us. It would be nice to beat them but they're not on my list of teams I think we'd fare well against.

Which 1 seed would you prefer? This is assuming Carolina would never have been in our region, which I don't think they would be.

Dukebacker
03-16-2008, 07:06 PM
There is no way we go down in the first round again.


This team has to be determined after last year. Im excited. Bring on Belmont!

Bay Area Duke Fan
03-16-2008, 07:09 PM
I agree they are talented, but you don't think Singler and Henderson are on their level talent wise? Also, Alexander for WVU is a future NBA player with a nice jumpshot and amazing leaping ability.

Singler?....maybe. But if Budinger played as hard as Singler, he'd be the better player. He's quite an athlete (world class volleyball player).

Henderson? He may be a great athlete, but he's yet to live up to his potential at Duke. He's very inconsistent and frequently doesn't show up at crunch time. I'd much prefer having Bayless on my team ...he's a real "go to" guy.

FerryFor50
03-16-2008, 07:12 PM
Singler?....maybe. But if Budinger played as hard as Singler, he'd be the better player. He's quite an athlete (world class volleyball player).

Henderson? He may be a great athlete, but he's yet to live up to his potential at Duke. He's very inconsistent and frequently doesn't show up at crunch time. I'd much prefer having Bayless on my team ...he's a real "go to" guy.


The difference is the depth. Arizona doesn't have the depth that Duke has. But it would still be a tough matchup.

CatfiveCane
03-16-2008, 07:14 PM
overall a good bracket for Duke.

Might not be bad for Duke to be shipped out West. Have the "Us against the World" attitude.

Playing UCLA is not bad either. Playing against a West Coast (Pac-10) team might prove to our benefit.

KandG
03-16-2008, 07:18 PM
I'm not looking past weekend one. I don't even want to think about Xavier, Purdue or UCLA at this point. Both WVU and Arizona are very capable of beating us, especially with our recent play.

feldspar
03-16-2008, 07:19 PM
Anybody have any insights into how to get tickets? And no, stand outside the MCI center and buy from a scalper is not the answer I'm looking for.

E-bay or craigslist. Lots of people buy their tickets and then when there's not a team they want to see, sell them.

Better hurry, though. WVU fans are going to swarm all over these tickets.

DukeDevilDeb
03-16-2008, 07:22 PM
I never like it when we play in North Carolina. It's much better for us to be in the Northeast, ideally in New Jersey. I know many think it's more valuable to be close to home but playing in front of hostile crowds as a high seed in the first two rounds of the tourney can't be good for the players' mindset, can it?

I went to the two NCAA games in Charlotte 2 years ago when Duke and UNC played there. When the Duke team took the floor, the place vibrated with hisses and boos and every other negative thing that fans could say. The crowd was 3/4s or more UNC fans .

Am I excited that we're in DC? You bet. Not a bad trip at all.

Am I glad we're not in Raleigh? You bet again. We don't need all the Baby Blue hatred coming at us. We have more fans in the DC/NYC area than in North Carolina. I'm actually thrilled with this seed! :D

DevilCastDownfromDurham
03-16-2008, 07:29 PM
I went to the two NCAA games in Charlotte 2 years ago when Duke and UNC played there. When the Duke team took the floor, the place vibrated with hisses and boos and every other negative thing that fans could say. The crowd was 3/4s or more UNC fans .

Am I excited that we're in DC? You bet. Not a bad trip at all.

Am I glad we're not in Raleigh? You bet again. We don't need all the Baby Blue hatred coming at us. We have more fans in the DC/NYC area than in North Carolina. I'm actually thrilled with this seed! :D

Had a very similar experience in Raleigh in '04 and skipped Charlotte for exactly this reason. I'm 100% with you on being happy with our draw. I love playing in D.C. and expect it to help our guys play with a little less pressure and many fewer nasty chants.

Can't wait for Thursday! Let's go Duke!

The1Bluedevil
03-16-2008, 07:31 PM
I'm not even thinking about anything past the 2nd round. Personally I would rather play Arizona. Why? They don't guard anyone, and have no depth at any posistion. They don't rebound the ball well and don't like playing hard nosed defensive clubs. Now Bayless is a stud and they can score but I'm confident Nelson can contain him.

West Virginia is tougher, smarter and better coached. They have their own stud and they can defend as well. They rely on the 3 ball as well and like to spread the floor. People may disagree but I'd rather see the Cats.

buzz
03-16-2008, 07:41 PM
Gotta be happy with our draw - about as good as we could hope for. Based on our recent play, we could have slipped to a #3, but that Wisconsin blowout probably kept us at a #2 - sorry Seth. Stanford also might have been slotted in there ahead of us.

mgtr
03-16-2008, 07:41 PM
I want to see us do well, and I think we got a great draw. I would not be surprised to see Henderson, Singler, and Thomas on the bench when the game begins. Coach K has shown a willingness to make whole substitutions early on, and Scheyer has outplayed those other three recently. I think he will be spectacular as a junior and senior.

freedevil
03-16-2008, 08:16 PM
Arizona doesn't scare me at all. Other than their awesome national championship run, they are one of the worst NCAA teams performance-wise in recent memory other than Roy's Kansas teams or any Stanford squad.

I don't want to play a team like W. Virginia. They're scrappy and if they get a shooting streak, it could get ugly for Duke.

_Gary
03-16-2008, 08:17 PM
I'm extremely happy with our draw, although I have to admit that Arizona is a little scary for a second round game. But this still seems like a favorable draw for us overall and I don't think we could have asked for much more.

Add me to the list that is glad to see us going to DC. Other than Cameron and Greensboro, I've never liked us playing in North Carolina. It's always like playing in the Dean Dome, and sometimes even worse than that.

For whatever reason, I'm not scared of UCLA at all. Not counting chickens or anything because we have plenty to look at before that potential matchup.

Also, I'm thrilled that UNC finally looks like they got stuck in what looks to me like the toughest bracket as a #1 seed. First time in a while I've seen it that way and I really didn't believe they'd be placed in a tough region. Nice.

_Gary
03-16-2008, 08:25 PM
Yikes! Why does it say "Jeff Capel" underneath my name?!! That's horrible.

Ok, that was weird. Now it's changed back to 6th man. What was that all about?

Jumbo
03-16-2008, 08:27 PM
I'm extremely happy with our draw, although I have to admit that Arizona is a little scary for a second round game. But this still seems like a favorable draw for us overall and I don't think we could have asked for much more.

Add me to the list that is glad to see us going to DC. Other than Cameron and Greensboro, I've never liked us playing in North Carolina. It's always like playing in the Dean Dome, and sometimes even worse than that.

For whatever reason, I'm not scared of UCLA at all. Not counting chickens or anything because we have plenty to look at before that potential matchup.

Also, I'm thrilled that UNC finally looks like they got stuck in what looks to me like the toughest bracket as a #1 seed. First time in a while I've seen it that way and I really didn't believe they'd be placed in a tough region. Nice.

Admit it -- the committee didn't screw us! ;)

_Gary
03-16-2008, 08:31 PM
Admit it -- the committee didn't screw us! ;)

I admit it, gladly!! And I also get that monkey off my back in the process. :D

Jumbo
03-16-2008, 08:33 PM
Last time I checked, neither you nor me are suiting up to play for Duke. The players should never look ahead, but we as fans can. Isn't that part of being a fan?

Are you not filling out a bracket this yr? If you are, then in that sense, you are looking ahead.

Doesn't mean I can't be superstitious ... ;)
BTW, if you're looking at "backup guards" as the chink in UCLA's armor, that's just evidence that they're an excellent team. And their three perimeter starters (Collison, Westbrook, Shipp) are outstanding.

BAMDSALL
03-16-2008, 08:34 PM
One game at a time, please. I'll be thrilled with the opportunity to play UCLA.

I salivate at the thought of beating Bob "HugaMug" and WVU.

I was impressed that the majority of the ESPN Roundtable analysts all picked us for the Elite Eight....more love than we've seen from that group in a long while!

Olympic Fan
03-16-2008, 08:48 PM
Like most of you, I'm pretty happy with the pairings. It's kind of amusing to hear the debate about a Duke-UCLA matchup on a couple of levels:
-- First, if we get that far, that's a hell of a run -- to the Elite Eight.
-- Second, who knows what will be going on in two weeks -- we may be matched up against Drake for all we know.
-- Third, never fear the reaper -- as an old-timer, I can recall the fear and consternation in 1989, when we got put in the same bracket with Georgetown after the Hoyas absolutely blew the Big East away in their tournament. They were supposed to be invincible -- then Princeton nearly took them down in the opener, NC State would have beaten them in the Sweet 16 except they got screwed by Rick Hartzell, then we chewed them up and spit them out. What a lot of fear for nothing.

I agree that the way to approach things is the way Coach K does -- one four-team mini-tournament at a time. Belmont is kind of a Tennessee version of Winthrop -- they'll be playing in the tourney for third straight year. They're not big -- their best frontcourt player likes to shoot 3s and he averages less than 4 rebounds a game. They have a lot of good guards and will shoot a ton of 3s. They won at Cincinnati and at Alabama this year, so they've played the big schools before.

Good omen -- Belmont was beaten in the first round the last two years by teams that reached the Final Four (UCLA in 2006; Georgetown in 2007).

I think either West Virginia or Arizona will be tough -- WVU plays great defense and they finished strong 9 of 12 wins down the stretch, including a BE Tourney win over UConn. They split with Pitt, losing by one at Pitt and winning at home.

Arizona stumbled down the stretch, losing 8 of 12. I agree they have two very talented young players in Bayless and Buddinger, but they also lack size inside (their one inside guy is Jordan Hill at 6-9, 211). Kind of a disfunctional team with O'Neill filling in for Olson and being designated his successor ... but Olson announcing he's coming back next season.

Interesting note: Doesn't anybody else remember the reports coming out of the McDonald's practices that the only guy who could guard Bayless was Singler?

Either WVU or Arizona is going to be tough. But, hey, you can't expect to have it easy in the NCAA. You've got to beat SOMEBODY.

And the committee did Duke a big favor -- we're not going to face a dominant big man until at least the Elite Eight. And, I don't want to look too far ahead, but I can't imagine a better Sweet 16 draw than Xavier/Purdue. Again, not that those are easy, but compared to Louisville/Oklahoma or Wisconsin/Southern Cal/Kansas State or Stanford/Marquette/Kentucky ... I like what we've got ahead of us.

But let's get by Belmont, then either WVU or 'Zona, then we can start worrying about what faces us in Phoenix.

houstondukie
03-16-2008, 08:55 PM
Doesn't mean I can't be superstitious ... ;)
BTW, if you're looking at "backup guards" as the chink in UCLA's armor, that's just evidence that they're an excellent team. And their three perimeter starters (Collison, Westbrook, Shipp) are outstanding.

It's one thing not to have a backup point guard. But UCLA doesn't have a single quality guard off the bench. Westbrook and Collison play the entire game. What if they get into foul trouble, get tired etc.

memphisdevil
03-16-2008, 08:56 PM
FerryFor50 writes: "The difference is the depth. Arizona doesn't have the depth that Duke has. But it would still be a tough matchup." I agree about the depth and would add that Kevin O'Neill (sp?) is nowhere near the coach Coach K is. It would a more harrowing contest if Coach Olson were on their sideline.

CDu
03-16-2008, 09:05 PM
Looking at the first weekend:

We should handle our business against Belmont. Their style of play (perimeter oriented) plays into our strengths (3-pt defense).

If we beat Belmont:

WVU - tough defensively, but not a terrible matchup. They're just okay offensively, and they aren't overwhelming defensively. They don't dominate the boards, they don't have a dominant post player, and they don't have an explosive point guard.

Arizona - they play somewhat like us offensively (lots of perimeter scoring), but they don't play defense. And they don't rebound. Their best players are a perimeter-oriented big man (much better matchup for Singler) and an average-sized, athletic shooting guard (we can go with Nelson, Henderson, Smith, or Scheyer there). They have a decent post player, but they have absolutely zero depth.

Obviously our second round opponent would still be dangerous, but we should be able to handle our business there and move on.

If we do, then we get to move on to the second mini-tournament.

displaceddevil
03-16-2008, 09:24 PM
I live in Cincinnati so I've seen Xavier play multiple times. I'd we shocked if we lost to X. They beat a lot of bad teams by less than 10 points. Their only good win was against Indiana early in the season. They have no real great big men, they just play good hard defense and play smart. They do have a very quick, very small point guard in Drew Lavender who may be hard to contain, but he's not a tremendous scorer. They are not overly athletic, they don't score a ton, and they're not great on the boards. Very excited to see them as our #3 seed (but not excited to see Duke as their #2 seed as I do also root for them). They do have a great coach in Sean Miller, who will probably go the Skip Prosser and Thad Matta way. Xavier seems to be a stepping stone for good young coaches.

tommy
03-16-2008, 09:32 PM
It's one thing not to have a backup point guard. But UCLA doesn't have a single quality guard off the bench. Westbrook and Collison play the entire game. What if they get into foul trouble, get tired etc.

They don't play the whole game at all. When one needs a blow the other handles the point and they slide Josh Shipp over to the 2. They've got a number of other big guys that play off the bench, including a shooter (Dragovic) and two bangers (Aboya and Mata-Real) plus a tweener (James Keefe.) Depth is not a significant issue for UCLA.

They're not a good matchup at all for us, should we get that far. They've got two very quick penetrating guards, which is usually a major problem for us to defend, plus a burly post guy with a ton of skills, and several other big, physically mature bangers who don't put up big scoring numbers but wear teams like us down.

The only real chink in UCLA's armor, besides the ankle injury to Mbah a Moute, is that sometimes their heads aren't in it and they coast. It's caused them to have to make a number of fairly major comebacks against inferior squads. But nobody should be minimizing the strength of the Bruins. In fact, if I had to wager on one team to win it all, it would be them.

DBFAN
03-16-2008, 09:52 PM
I am so excited to be a number 2 seed and out of the state of NC. While that does mean I wont be able to go see them, getting away from the NC fans (and that does include most of the media) will take a lot of pressure off of them. I love our pairings, Duke will be foaming at the mouth to get a piece of UCON, or UCLA, two team I think we can beat.

The best thing is we are a 2 seed, and that means we get to play an inferior opponent in the first round, which will help cure the funk that is going on with some of our players. I look for Singler to have a big game first round and build off of it.

Nothing but smiles here:D

devildeac
03-16-2008, 09:54 PM
Yikes! Why does it say "Jeff Capel" underneath my name?!! That's horrible.

Ok, that was weird. Now it's changed back to 6th man. What was that all about?

Why is that horrible? Jeff was a good player for us, now coaches a good program at OU and had 434 assists in his career at Duke. Let's show some respect here. Perhaps you thought it said JASON capel who was the younger, more evil brother...

GMR
03-16-2008, 09:55 PM
I live in southern California, so I've gotten the chance to watch Arizona about 8-9 times this year.

Chase Budinger is a perimeter player at 6'8", and he's a good shooter. He doesn't penetrate very much, and doesn't play defense at all. He also is not a good rebounder. He seems to shy away from significant contact.

Arizona's center is fair, about average to what we would see in the ACC. Bayless is very talented, and can shoot from the perimeter and penetrate.

Arizona, as a team, does not like to bang underneath the basket, and plays a very mediocre brand of defense. I would like to see Arizona beat WV because I think we can beat Arizona.

GMR

devildeac
03-16-2008, 10:14 PM
I would like to see Duke in Raleigh because I live here and would probably get tix and/or an invite but the holes here would drive me insane. If we can get some fans to get tix in DC and support the team, then that is favorable for us with a reasonable regional group of opponents.

blazindw
03-16-2008, 10:28 PM
Tickets are being swooped up fast up here in DC and the prices are starting to go up. One reason for that besides the fact that we are playing here is that WV is also in this pod (less than 3 hours from Morgantown to DC) and they're expecting a lot of fans to travel into town for the game.

mr. synellinden
03-16-2008, 10:34 PM
i did not like this tidbit i just read on espn.com:

Duke. The Blue Devils have not lived up to their seeding the past three years and in eight of the past 12. They were eliminated by a No. 11 seed last season (VCU), a No. 4 in 2006 (LSU) and a No. 5 in '05 (Michigan State). Last time Duke beat a team with a better seed than itself: March 26th, 1994, when the second-seeded Blue Devils beat No. 1 seed Purdue to make the Final Four. How long ago was that? Grant Hill was still in school.



It's time to change that with a win over UCLA in the regional final.

I think we ended up with the best draw we could have hoped for. The Pac-10 is overrated. UCLA is beatable. They needed a miracle finish to beat Cal at home. They were a very bad call away from losing to Stanford at home. They lost at home to Texas earlier this year. They are not deep. They lost their most versatile player, Mbah a Moute, to a high ankle sprain and who knows when he will be back or how effective he will be.

I know we have three games to go to get there, but the path is as good as we could have hoped for and the #1 seed lurking in our region can be had. If Duke plays well, there is a clear path to the final four.

6-0.

glutton
03-16-2008, 10:49 PM
"Last time Duke beat a team with a better seed than itself: March 26th, 1994, when the second-seeded Blue Devils beat No. 1 seed Purdue to make the Final Four. How long ago was that? Grant Hill was still in school."

Isn't that kind of a silly statistic, given how many times we've had a 1 seed recently? It's hard to beat a higher seeded team when there aren't any.

UrinalCake
03-16-2008, 10:51 PM
It's funny, I spent most of last night reading post after post discussing how Duke's season was over and we were going nowhere. Now everyone's looking forward to playing UCLA and thinking we have a good shot at winning. Life without sports sure would be dull :)

Mudge
03-16-2008, 11:13 PM
I'm more scared of Arizona than WVU...Jerryd Bayless is sick

If he's sick, then maybe he won't be able to play against us-- that's probably a good thing, if he's any good.

Mudge
03-16-2008, 11:25 PM
I'm thrilled. This worked out about as well as it could have. We have to play well, obviously, or that won't matter. But from a matchup perspective, I'm happy.

Could not agree more... I like potential matchups with Arizona, WV, Xavier, and UCLA, but we have to win games we should win, in order to get to them, or it all becomes moot.

I went to see Xavier play St. Joe's in person recently-- St. Joe's should have beaten them 3 times this year, not just twice, and St. Joe's does not have near the talent that Duke does. On the other hand, Xavier should not be losing 3 times to St. Joe's this year, as Xavier has far more talent on their squad than SJ-- Xavier probably has more athletic ability than Duke does, and has pretty good outside shooting as well, but can go cold out there (come to think of it, not unlike Duke)... the key for Duke, should they meet Xavier, will be to pressure Drew Lavender at point guard-- if you press him, he likes to play fast, and he tries to play faster than he can, and ends up turning the ball over a lot. Also, Xavier's best (and practically only) inside scoring comes from Duncan, who does not start, and will often go outside, like Singler--it's amazing the similarities of these teams; Xavier does not have anyone bigger than 6'8" (Duncan and Love, and Love can't score), so Duke will not be overmatched on size.

As for UCLA, I think that Love is overrated, and Singler showed him up by beating him head-to-head in HS, and I would not be surprised to see Singler run Love, and school him again. If the guards figure out how to guard Collison, Duke will win that matchup-- if we get there.

Mudge
03-16-2008, 11:28 PM
I'm very surpised to hear Seth say he didn't think Duke deserved their seed. They went 27-5 and 13-3 in the ACC. Are you kidding me? I'm still surprised we weren't a 2 seed.

Duke's bracket is good but they'll have their hands full. Either West Virginia or the enigmatic Arizona are more than capable of beating Duke in the 2nd round. While Duke will and should be the favorite against either team, they'll have a challenging road, no doubt.

Uhh, I think we ARE a 2 seed... any second round game is losable, but all things considered, we came out smelling like roses.

PatZorro
03-16-2008, 11:32 PM
Love was insane that game; he had way more points and rebounds. Kyle's team was way more talented, top to bottom, than Love's, and Kyle's team barely won. Neither Kyle nor Love guarded the other player.

Duke is not way more talented than UCLA. Love may be just as eager to see his old HS running mate.

PatZorro

VaDukie
03-16-2008, 11:49 PM
Love was insane that game; he had way more points and rebounds. Kyle's team was way more talented, top to bottom, than Love's, and Kyle's team barely won. Neither Kyle nor Love guarded the other player.

Duke is not way more talented than UCLA. Love may be just as eager to see his old HS running mate.

PatZorro

I think holding down Love will be Z's job. I don't think he can stop him, but I think he's looking good enough to contain him (sorry for the cliche). We'd still need to throw some zones, double teams, and all other distractions at him to keep him in check.

Also, would anyone else love to see Nelson guarding Collison? Maybe some shades of Grant guarding the Big Dawg in 1994, with our best player putting in so much energy on the defensive end that it's up to our other guys to step it up big offensively? I'm not comparing the talent levels of the two pairs - the 94 guys are immensely better - but the situations could play out the same way.

dkbaseball
03-17-2008, 01:27 AM
Don't overlook Purdue, if they can get past Xavier. If the refs let them get away with their overly physical style of perimeter defense, Duke could be in for a lot of frustration. Chris Kramer, defensive player of the year in the Big Ten, might be able to take Paulus completely out of the game, and right now I'm not sure where we are without Greg's shooting.

I can't get upset over this draw, but I make the Bruins the tourney favorites, and would much rather have had a shot at Memphis or Kansas.

heyman25
03-17-2008, 03:01 AM
Reality check. As we all know you can't look past to the next opponent. The whole ball of wax is Belmont. Remember Mississippi Valley State or was it Delta State and of course VCU.Like I read elsewhere I will wait til Friday morning before I have any other thoughts about the tournament. I think we did better than last year in the placement,but this team has many vulnerable deficiencies at any given time during the game. Its nice to dream about the next few weeks but the team and the fans better focus on Belmont.

heyman25
03-17-2008, 03:18 AM
Mudge you are sadly mistaken about Love. He was PAC 10 player of the year. Singler and Love are 2 completely different players. However enough about UCLA. The team and the fans should only be concerned with Belmont. I am sure the coaching staff knows better than looking past the next opponent. That goofball Davis used it as ammunition against Duke in 2003 for Indiana's Win. VCU is too fresh in the mind of our current team to get caught up in any speculation about what is next.The team that wins it all will most likely maintain that attitude. My belief is UCLA despite its small bench are one of the best #1 seeds.Kansas is right there as is UNC who I want to see go down in flames as soon as possible.{In Charlotte would be poetic justice}.

Bob Green
03-17-2008, 04:29 AM
Arizona loss to Virginia 75-72 and beat Illinois 78-72 in overtime. We beat Virginia twice by double digits each time and beat Illinois by 13 in the Maui Classic.

West Virginia beat NMSU by 14 points, we beat NMSU by 25. WVU beat St John's twice by nine points each time and we beat St. John's by 30 points. WVU beat Marquette by 15 points, while we won by four. WVU loss to Pitt by one point the same as us, but beat Pitt by 14 the second time they played.

I'm thrilled with our bracket and I am happy we are playing in Washington D.C. It is a short trip, but it provides us a whole new environment. I'm optimistic we will be traveling to Phoenix for the second weekend.

_Gary
03-17-2008, 08:03 AM
Why is that horrible? Jeff was a good player for us, now coaches a good program at OU and had 434 assists in his career at Duke. Let's show some respect here. Perhaps you thought it said JASON capel who was the younger, more evil brother...

You're exactly right. I had a brain freeze and was thinking JASON Capel. I thought it was some cruel joke, but I realize now it was actually a neat thing. My sincerest apologies.


Gary

jipops
03-17-2008, 09:07 AM
i did not like this tidbit i just read on espn.com:

Duke. The Blue Devils have not lived up to their seeding the past three years and in eight of the past 12. They were eliminated by a No. 11 seed last season (VCU), a No. 4 in 2006 (LSU) and a No. 5 in '05 (Michigan State). Last time Duke beat a team with a better seed than itself: March 26th, 1994, when the second-seeded Blue Devils beat No. 1 seed Purdue to make the Final Four. How long ago was that? Grant Hill was still in school.



This is largely a byproduct of consistently over-achieving during the regular season to earn that high seed. 2005 and 2006 are perfect examples of us not actually being as good as our records indicated.

Bluedog
03-17-2008, 09:19 AM
I'm more scared of Arizona than WVU...Jerryd Bayless is sick


If he's sick, then maybe he won't be able to play against us-- that's probably a good thing, if he's any good.

hahahaha. You do realize that "sick" means like "crazy good," right? grc5 didn't mean that he was ill - he meant that he has amazing skills. Perhaps you understood that and you were making a joke, but sarcasm is hard to detect online, and it seems like you were being serious. Just wanted to clear that up!

Bluedog
03-17-2008, 09:24 AM
This is largely a byproduct of consistently over-achieving during the regular season to earn that high seed. 2005 and 2006 are perfect examples of us not actually being as good as our records indicated.

No, it's largely a byproduct of being seeding #1. As has been said in the past, you can't beat a higher seeded team if there are none. Let's look at our seedings from 1997-present.

1997: 2
1998: 1
1999: 1
2000: 1
2001: 1
2002: 1
2003: 3
2004: 1
2005: 1
2006: 1
2007: 6

So, the only years we could possibly beat a higher ranked team in the last 10 yrs was 97, 03, and 07. And it's not like upsetting a 6 seed. We'd have to take down a 1 or 2 seed in 97/03.

JBJL8
03-17-2008, 09:24 AM
I think holding down Love will be Z's job. I don't think he can stop him, but I think he's looking good enough to contain him (sorry for the cliche). We'd still need to throw some zones, double teams, and all other distractions at him to keep him in check.

With all due respect to your opinion..let's take a heavy and hard reality check on Zoubek. Has he played better lately? Yes. Is he ready to "contain" one of the top big men in the country? Please. Kevin Love would chew up Zoo. I like his progress but good grief....

For all the talk about playing UCLA...many of us must be forgetting the past month where we have played horribly on most nights.

Let's win one...and then bring our A game against Arizona or WVU...because if we don't..we'll be going home early again...

bcato
03-17-2008, 10:10 AM
i did not like this tidbit i just read on espn.com:

Duke. The Blue Devils have not lived up to their seeding the past three years and in eight of the past 12. They were eliminated by a No. 11 seed last season (VCU), a No. 4 in 2006 (LSU) and a No. 5 in '05 (Michigan State). Last time Duke beat a team with a better seed than itself: March 26th, 1994, when the second-seeded Blue Devils beat No. 1 seed Purdue to make the Final Four. How long ago was that? Grant Hill was still in school.

6-0.


Actually we have not played any team seeded higher than us since 1994! Can't beat who you don't play!

asbcheeks
03-17-2008, 10:33 AM
Actually we have not played any team seeded higher than us since 1994! Can't beat who you don't play!

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/basketball/college/2003/ncaa_tourney/news/2003/03/27/kansas_duke_ap/

fisheyes
03-17-2008, 10:40 AM
The ESPN website has the Duke game slotted at 7:10PM.

GO DEVILS!

Chitowndevil
03-17-2008, 10:50 AM
I agree with what seems to be the consensus: this draw couldn't have been much better. Now, if Duke play like they did on Saturday, the draw doesn't matter that much. But it's nice to look at our half of the region and be able to say, if this team plays like it was in late January and early February, they will be in the Elite 8.

Unfortunately, I think if both teams play at their best, UCLA beats Duke at least 7 and probably 8 times out of 10. But a lot can happen between now and regionals. In particular UConn, if they get that far, will give UCLA a much better game than people think.

BD80
03-17-2008, 01:30 PM
I think the PAC 10 has been way overrated. However, UA and UCLA are bad match-ups for us. UA has had significant injuries which contributed greatly to its mediocre record. The Cats now have Bayless back, but more, their point guard Nic Wise has returned, which has freed Bayless offensively. The Cats have little heart, but loads of talent. If we don't jump out into a lead and step on their throats, it is a scary game. Frankly though, I don't think UA gets by WVU who has played in a very tough conference and plays tough physical D.

UCLA isn't the worst draw, but still is a very tough match up. They have a quick point guard and several big post men. We can beat them with a great game and I would really enjoy us getting to that game.

Chard
03-17-2008, 01:50 PM
I agree with what seems to be the consensus: this draw couldn't have been much better. Now, if Duke play like they did on Saturday, the draw doesn't matter that much. But it's nice to look at our half of the region and be able to say, if this team plays like it was in late January and early February, they will be in the Elite 8.

But a lot can happen between now and regionals. In particular UConn, if they get that far, will give UCLA a much better game than people think.

That is why this bracket is so exciting to me. Duke could face UConn or UCLA. Either game would be a great game and a chance for revenge against UConn or stake a claim to the title by beating UCLA. UConn has been playing well and could beat UCLA.

But first, Duke has to get there and those games will be compelling as well. Belmont? A good first round game where Duke won't be able to coast to a W. They will have to play and execute. Arizona or WVU looms in the next round. Duke has history with Zona. WVU would be a tough opponent as well. In the next round, (yes, I believe Duke advances) Duke will see Xavier or Purdue. I like those odds against either one.

Whatever happens, I expect close, hard fought games throughout the tournament and some distinct surprises from the lesser known.


Ahhhhhh, I love this time of year.

Devilsfan
03-17-2008, 01:52 PM
Someone a few comments back asked about Paulus. He seemed to step on someones foot and appeared to twist something. I thought it might be a lot worse but he continued to play. His shooting however was not the same but I attributed that to weak or worn out legs. You know what to do and how to do it. You've been doing it all season but all of a sudden it's not happening. Your mind keeps writing checks your body can't cash.

JasonEvans
03-17-2008, 02:05 PM
I have added a poll to this thread, so you can make your picks. Feel free to pick Belmont and invite the ridicule of your friends ;)

-Jason

Bluedawg
03-17-2008, 02:11 PM
Most "talking heads" have UCLA/UNC final two

BlueintheFace
03-17-2008, 02:24 PM
Xavier is Scaaaaaaaaaaaary. Drew Lavender is exactly the kind of player who can break down Duke off the dribble. If you haven't seen them play- imagine Sean Singletary attacking our back court off the dribble, but with very good shooters to dish to instead of the Virginia "team".

_Gary
03-17-2008, 02:30 PM
We are winning this region and going to the Final Four. Take it to the bank. That is all.

gofurman
03-17-2008, 02:38 PM
Someone a few comments back asked about Paulus. He seemed to step on someones foot and appeared to twist something. I thought it might be a lot worse but he continued to play. His shooting however was not the same but I attributed that to weak or worn out legs. You know what to do and how to do it. You've been doing it all season but all of a sudden it's not happening. Your mind keeps writing checks your body can't cash.

Have to pull for Arizona - WVU plays better D and would be playing in DC....a lot of fans for WVU in DC...

Bluedawg
03-17-2008, 02:46 PM
My head tells me UCLA but my heart tells me Duke

rsvman
03-17-2008, 03:31 PM
Xavier is Scaaaaaaaaaaaary. Drew Lavender is exactly the kind of player who can break down Duke off the dribble. If you haven't seen them play- imagine Sean Singletary attacking our back court off the dribble, but with very good shooters to dish to instead of the Virginia "team".

Agree. Maybe the zone that worked so well against Virginia would also mess with Xavier's heads. But I say bring on Purdue. I'm not afraid of any stinkin' Big 10 team! :D

TwoDukeTattoos
03-17-2008, 03:54 PM
We are winning this region and going to the Final Four. Take it to the bank. That is all.

Hell yes! I agree and have been saying it for weeks. Chalk it up fellow Dukies!!!

PatZorro
03-17-2008, 03:56 PM
The NCAA tourney's popularity is built on big name, high seeds going down early. Looking around, I don't really see another vulnerable 2 other than Duke. G-Town, IF, and it is a big IF, Davidson beats Gonzaga. But after that GTown has smooth sailing to the elite 8.

Looking at our half of the draw, Duke should beat any of those teams. But, we are equally capable of losing to any of those teams if the are hot. Losing to WVU or Arizona would be a surprise, but not a shock. But the media would have kittens if Duke goes down early.

Frankly, our Draw is deceptive. There are no world beaters, but we are vulnurable to each team. We also have aspects at which we are better, but the teams are more evenly matched that the seedings would indicate.

I think the comittee has set us up for a fall. Since I don't see another patsy, I think we are it. G-town has an acknowledged tough draw. If they lose, it will be a mild note. There will be talk that it was unfair to "reward" Georgetown with what is essentially a road game at a mid-major power.

If Duke goes down to UCLA, it will probably be due to thier inside power, which will shock exactly NO ONE. But a loss before that to a team without a post threat means losing to a team that plays "our style." That will have the vultures jockying for position over the corpse.

PatZorro

Nugget
03-17-2008, 03:59 PM
I also agree with the consensus that this bracket is about the best we could have hoped for.

The only real negative is that Arizona is much more talented than the other 10 seeds we might have had to face in the 2nd round (South Alabama, St. Mary's or Davidson). They worry me a lot -- I don't see any way Paulus could stay in front of Bayless and DeMarcus could get into serious foul trouble chasing him around. We will need a huge effort from Nolan Smith to beat Arizona if they can get by West Va.

Of all the #1 seeds, UCLA poses the least chance of blowing up out of the building. They are not deep. In response to one of the posters repeatedly posing the, I assume rhetorical, question of who their backup guards are, I'll bite -- the answer is they don't have any. For the last month or so, Collison, Shipp and Westbrook have been averaging about 37 minutes per game, and Westbrook is the backup point. The rest of their rotation is basically Love and Mbah a Moute for 30 minutes each and Mata and Aboya for about 12 each. Their 8th and 9th men, Keefe and Dragovich, are basically emergency replacements. Plus, their frontcourt players are nicked up.

Obviously, we would not be favored and we'd run the likelihood of getting killed on the boards. On the other hand, Love doesn't have the quickness to really take advantage of Zoubek and Singler has a history of success against him.

Having seen UCLA up close all year, they are the 1 seed that has the least margin for error -- they periodically go through stretches of having a very tough time scoring and are much streakier shooters than the other top teams. It's not crazy to think that, if we can get to the regionals, we'd have a shot to beat them. As I think Jumbo noted, the key would be whether we could run our offense against UCLA's very, very tough defense -- we depend so heavily on dribble penetration and kickouts, but that requires beating the other team off the dribble, which would be a tall order against UCLA.

Anyway, let's not jump too far ahead, as we will have a major challenge in the 2nd round.

BlueBlood112883
03-17-2008, 04:56 PM
I'm not in the least scared of Zona. They haven't won 2 games in a row since Jan 31st and lost 8 out of their last 12. Plus they go across country and they will do the usual Zona bow out early on. WVU might give us some probs if we let Alexander go off for 30+ pts in the paint. However, the key will be can the WVU guards get the ball to Joe Alexander.........Me I think they might have some probs doing that. Also for some of these people going with Xavier to upset us in the Sweet 16......better watch of for UGA. That team is hot and I wouldn't want to see them right now.

DeepBlue70
03-17-2008, 06:02 PM
A bit of a different direction on this topic - I have always wondered if the selection committee kept an eye on "delicious" grudge matches e.g pitting us against Wisconsin or Marquette...a team with something to prove. I'm happy to see that there is no background noise of that kind in any of our potential match ups. Teams always get up for us anyway. We don't need the extra incentive. Perhaps the committee really does not try to formulate those kinds of made-for-hype storylines after all.

devildownunder
03-17-2008, 06:23 PM
No, it's largely a byproduct of being seeding #1. As has been said in the past, you can't beat a higher seeded team if there are none. Let's look at our seedings from 1997-present.

1997: 2
1998: 1
1999: 1
2000: 1
2001: 1
2002: 1
2003: 3
2004: 1
2005: 1
2006: 1
2007: 6

So, the only years we could possibly beat a higher ranked team in the last 10 yrs was 97, 03, and 07. And it's not like upsetting a 6 seed. We'd have to take down a 1 or 2 seed in 97/03.


well, the issues are related, aren't they? I agree that K got everything he could out of the 2005 and 2006 teams, to the point that those no.1 seedings, while definitely earned, were probably a bit high, in the sense that we probably were not one of the top 4 teams in the country by the time the tournament started those two years.

RepoMan
03-17-2008, 06:51 PM
The NCAA tourney's popularity is built on big name, high seeds going down early. Looking around, I don't really see another vulnerable 2 other than Duke. G-Town, IF, and it is a big IF, Davidson beats Gonzaga. But after that GTown has smooth sailing to the elite 8.

Looking at our half of the draw, Duke should beat any of those teams. But, we are equally capable of losing to any of those teams if the are hot. Losing to WVU or Arizona would be a surprise, but not a shock. But the media would have kittens if Duke goes down early.

Frankly, our Draw is deceptive. There are no world beaters, but we are vulnurable to each team. We also have aspects at which we are better, but the teams are more evenly matched that the seedings would indicate.

I think the comittee has set us up for a fall. Since I don't see another patsy, I think we are it. G-town has an acknowledged tough draw. If they lose, it will be a mild note. There will be talk that it was unfair to "reward" Georgetown with what is essentially a road game at a mid-major power.

If Duke goes down to UCLA, it will probably be due to thier inside power, which will shock exactly NO ONE. But a loss before that to a team without a post threat means losing to a team that plays "our style." That will have the vultures jockying for position over the corpse.

PatZorro

Ahhhh, the Sweet Voice of Patrick Yates. How we missed your voice of doom. Welcome back, amigo.

Sir Stealth
03-17-2008, 07:03 PM
The NCAA tourney's popularity is built on big name, high seeds going down early. Looking around, I don't really see another vulnerable 2 other than Duke. G-Town, IF, and it is a big IF, Davidson beats Gonzaga. But after that GTown has smooth sailing to the elite 8.

Looking at our half of the draw, Duke should beat any of those teams. But, we are equally capable of losing to any of those teams if the are hot. Losing to WVU or Arizona would be a surprise, but not a shock. But the media would have kittens if Duke goes down early.

Frankly, our Draw is deceptive. There are no world beaters, but we are vulnurable to each team. We also have aspects at which we are better, but the teams are more evenly matched that the seedings would indicate.

I think the comittee has set us up for a fall. Since I don't see another patsy, I think we are it. G-town has an acknowledged tough draw. If they lose, it will be a mild note. There will be talk that it was unfair to "reward" Georgetown with what is essentially a road game at a mid-major power.

If Duke goes down to UCLA, it will probably be due to thier inside power, which will shock exactly NO ONE. But a loss before that to a team without a post threat means losing to a team that plays "our style." That will have the vultures jockying for position over the corpse.

PatZorro

I think (know) I'm probably the "patsy" for responding to this, but how could you overlook Tennessee as a 2 in a tough position? Everyone talks about UNC having a "hard" bracket, but the team that really has it rough is Tennessee. They have Butler as a 7 seed, at 2007 Sweet 16 team that's lost a whopping 3 games all year long. Then they have Louisville as a really tough potential 3 seed matchup. Not to mention they get the number 1 overall seed despite themselves being the top RPI team (for whatever that's worth). UNC doesn't have to play all the tough teams in it's bracket to get the the Final Four, and the teams in it's half don't actually impress me much at all. All that being said, it's pretty dumb to think the committee intentionally tried to set up Duke (even if it didn't look like Duke got itself an easy path). One could make an equal or better argument that the NCAA wants Duke to advance as far as possible because it will get better ratings for games deep in the tournament.

Troublemaker
03-17-2008, 07:10 PM
Overall, I like Duke's draw. I prefer Xavier as the 3 seed to either Louisville or Stanford, so therefore I wouldn't trade places with either Tennessee or Texas, respectively. As for Georgetown, while their 3 seed is Wisconsin (which really is a well-coached team and isn't some sort of automatic win or anything), the Hoyas still ended up with an extremely tough half-region overall. They have to contend with Davidson or Gonzaga in the second round and potentially USC down the line. I wouldn't trade places with them, either.

That said, I'm not in love with our 7/10 pairing. WVU has good length on the wings and is a good shot-blocking team, and Arizona is still very talented; I personally hate being bracketed with underachieving teams that are therefore underseeded relative to talent. Bayless is a future top 10 pick, Budinger might be a top 15 pick, and Jordan Hill and Nic Wise are good players, too. We should matchup pretty well with both teams, but it's not my dream pairing.

Regardless, gotta play well no matter who you're bracketed with. And first step is Belmont.

heyman25
03-17-2008, 07:24 PM
Duke never has an easy out against any opponent. We never keep the pedal on the gas. The team lets the other team back in the game nearly every time. Wisconsin was one of the few exceptions to that glaring statistic. Play every game like it could be your last and Duke may surprise the pundits. I hope I am pleasantly surprised by a few comfortable wins. In the mean time, I will watch them hoping each game won't mean the end of this season.

pless55
03-17-2008, 07:25 PM
Who would you rather play in the second round? West Virginia has a great player named Joe Alexander who is very athletic and can do everything with Alex Ruoff being the perimeter shooter. But, Arizona could be a sleeper with the athletic Bayless and Budinger plus having to guard Jordan Hill. Who would you rather play?:)

gofurman
03-17-2008, 07:52 PM
Duke never has an easy out against any opponent. We never keep the pedal on the gas. The team lets the other team back in the game nearly every time. Wisconsin was one of the few exceptions to that glaring statistic. Play every game like it could be your last and Duke may surprise the pundits. I hope I am pleasantly surprised by a few comfortable wins. In the mean time, I will watch them hoping each game won't mean the end of this season.

"We never keep the pedal on the gas." I think this is more a measure of current talent overall (no real post yet like Brand Boozer or even Battier) than lack of trying...

Duke was know from 98 to 05 for killing people early and often...getting up by 20 and extending to 30

gofurman
03-17-2008, 07:53 PM
Who would you rather play in the second round? West Virginia has a great player named Joe Alexander who is very athletic and can do everything with Alex Ruoff being the perimeter shooter. But, Arizona could be a sleeper with the athletic Bayless and Budinger plus having to guard Jordan Hill. Who would you rather play?:)

X Factor here is crowd. Remember DC is WV country and Arizona lacks defense. Gotta go with Arizona. C'mon cats.

RepoMan
03-17-2008, 08:06 PM
Remember DC is WV country

This is absolutely untrue.

Troublemaker
03-17-2008, 08:13 PM
Who would you rather play in the second round? West Virginia has a great player named Joe Alexander who is very athletic and can do everything with Alex Ruoff being the perimeter shooter. But, Arizona could be a sleeper with the athletic Bayless and Budinger plus having to guard Jordan Hill. Who would you rather play?:)

I don't think I have a preference here. Hopefully Duke can use what should be an easy game against Belmont (knock on wood) to start playing well again, and then who wins between WVU and Arizona shouldn't matter. If absolutely forced to pick a preference, I'd say Arizona because they are the weaker defensive team of the two. Duke's offense hasn't played well recently and if we continue to struggle offensively, WVU is more likely than Arizona to win a low-scoring slugfest where both teams have to scrap for everything.

DukieBoy
03-17-2008, 09:08 PM
i got mad at Bill Plaschke (sp) during around the horn. As they were analyzing the brackets,they talked about UCLA and the west bracket. Plaschke pointed out that all the number one seeds were rooting for Duke as they 2 seed because they are the most vunerable team. He was trashing Duke every way possible so no team will ever come close to the title without a true big man. I can't wait till he eats his words.

Secondly, i would love to see Singler/Love II. Singler the first round and I think they might be able to handle UCLA. I haven't seen UCLA play too much this year, but if we are shooting like we did the first time against UNC, no one can stop us. Singler and Zoubek should be able to handle Love and Demarcus will shut down either Collison or Westbrook. That would leave the other guard to either Paulus or Henderson, and I pray that they can handle them.

bdh21
03-17-2008, 09:16 PM
X Factor here is crowd. Remember DC is WV country and Arizona lacks defense. Gotta go with Arizona. C'mon cats.

Duke will have a large presence in DC. Don't worry at all about the croud

weezie
03-17-2008, 09:40 PM
i got mad at Bill Plaschke (sp) during around the horn.


Sitting and hitting yourself in the head with a frying pan will give you as much sports information as watching an episode of "Around the Horn." Even watching Oprah will give you more sports information. Spare yourself the aggravation and just flip on by!

Sandman
03-17-2008, 10:15 PM
We got a great seed - couldn't have been any better!! We should take Belmont and then play the West Virginia/Arizona winner. We match up well against either team, but I really hope it's Arizona. In their games I've watched, they have not played tough, hard-nosed defense. Plus they are not a deep team. One factor that cannot be overlooked is COACHING. O'Neill (?) comes from a pro background, with very limited experience in college post-season tournaments. And that's a very, very big advantage to Duke.

SoCalDukeFan
03-17-2008, 10:28 PM
i got mad at Bill Plaschke (sp) during around the horn. As they were analyzing the brackets,they talked about UCLA and the west bracket. Plaschke pointed out that all the number one seeds were rooting for Duke as they 2 seed because they are the most vunerable team. He was trashing Duke every way possible so no team will ever come close to the title without a true big man. I can't wait till he eats his words.

Secondly, i would love to see Singler/Love II. Singler the first round and I think they might be able to handle UCLA. I haven't seen UCLA play too much this year, but if we are shooting like we did the first time against UNC, no one can stop us. Singler and Zoubek should be able to handle Love and Demarcus will shut down either Collison or Westbrook. That would leave the other guard to either Paulus or Henderson, and I pray that they can handle them.

If we are shooting our 3's well we can beat anyone.
If not, we can lose to almost any team in the tournament.

Lets get too far ahead of ourselves. Belmont first. I will worry about UCLA later.

Dick

gofurman
03-17-2008, 10:35 PM
This is absolutely untrue.

YMaybe i misstated... perhaps DC isn't WV country but don't you think there would be more WV fans than AZ fans?

dukemsu
03-17-2008, 10:44 PM
i got mad at Bill Plaschke (sp) during around the horn. As they were analyzing the brackets,they talked about UCLA and the west bracket. Plaschke pointed out that all the number one seeds were rooting for Duke as they 2 seed because they are the most vunerable team. He was trashing Duke every way possible so no team will ever come close to the title without a true big man. I can't wait till he eats his words.


This "no one wins without a dominant big man" is as big a myth as 5-12s being sure things. Several teams have won without a dominant big (Indiana 87, KU 88, Syracuse 03, MSU 00, and you could go on and on). This is just a script these guys all follow. UCLA won in 1995 with George Zidek in the post. Anyone remember his "dominance"? C'mon.

Sure, it'd be great to have a dominant big. But you can just as easily say that you need strong perimeter shooting in this age of the 3. More than likely, you need a blend of both to go all the way.

However, if our threes are falling, anyone is vulnerable to us. What will be big for Duke is to get back to turning teams over and getting easy looks as a result, including the back-breaking transition 3s that were so plentiful early in the year. As teams saw us a second time, they started to adjust to this attack. No one in our bracket is particularly familiar with us or our style.

I still like the draw.

blazindw
03-17-2008, 10:47 PM
YMaybe i misstated... perhaps DC isn't WV country but don't you think there would be more WV fans than AZ fans?

Oh, there will be lots of WV fans there, but there will be a TON of Duke fans. DC, outside of North Carolina and probably NYC, has the largest contingent of Duke alumni in the country. And, if WV loses, there will be a TON of free tickets for the Saturday games. ;) I hope we will be there to snap them up!

gep
03-17-2008, 11:11 PM
I just hope that the team is not looking past Belmont as we fans seem to be doing. I just can't imagine the major melt-down this board will be like if Belmont "finds a way". After all, Belmont has won their conference tournament the past few years, so know how to win... as Coach K liles to say... they are "champions". Of course, they've been blown out the last 2 NCAA's... but who knows, maybe 3rd time's the charm? I sure hope not.:cool:

blazindw
03-18-2008, 09:41 AM
For all Duke fans, DC is the place to be this weekend. The men's hoops, as most everyone knows, is playing up here at the Verizon Center. The women's team got placed at the Comcast Center in College Park, and Duke Lax takes on Georgetown this Saturday at 11am. Let's get good crowds at each of these events!

Mike Corey
03-18-2008, 09:48 AM
For all Duke fans, DC is the place to be this weekend. The men's hoops, as most everyone knows, is playing up here at the Verizon Center. The women's team got placed at the Comcast Center in College Park, and Duke Lax takes on Georgetown this Saturday at 11am. Let's get good crowds at each of these events!

Hm. Isn't DC more like Central Campus, with NYC being "Duke North"?

;)

RPS
03-18-2008, 10:20 AM
Having seen UCLA up close all year....I will be at the Anaheim games on Saturday and will be pleased to provide a report.

blazindw
03-18-2008, 10:36 AM
Hm. Isn't DC more like Central Campus, with NYC being "Duke North"?

;)

Haha, but we have a subway and a rail system. I thought Central wasn't getting a rail system for like 50 years. ;)

UConnJack
03-18-2008, 10:37 AM
With a perspective from the Big East, I would warn that WVU could be a serious threat to Duke if the make it past Zona (which I think they should). They are a team where I really don't think their seeding does them justice. They are a good defensive team, good 3-pt shooters, and has an emerging star in Alexander. Plus, like him or hate him, Huggins is a good and experienced coach with really nothing to lose this year but a lot to gain. I think they match up well with Duke and would have a good chance of knocking them off.

Kewlswim
03-18-2008, 10:44 AM
Hi,

It feels like picking against Duke has become sort of, well, "trendy." You know what, if you pick against Duke the odds are that at some point that will be a "good" pick. After all the Devils have "only" won three National Championships. However, this is silly. Duke wins a TON of games. Duke is Duke.

Anytime a team seems weak, other teams are like sharks smelling blood. However, I think we are too close to the situation. Duke can still slug through playing what seems like an awfully played game against Clemson (at least to an outsider, Coach K said he thought Duke was playing well) and still lose by only 4 points. I am not sure we look so bad and are so bad. I think Duke was one basket away from really putting the hurt on Carolina at Cameron since we needed some separation and didn't get it. Sure, Belmont matches up well against us. A number of teams this year matched up well against us. Guess what we beat them. Furthermore, losing to Clemson is not like a super big surprise. Lots of prognosticators picked Clemson to finally come together and beat us--all they had to do was hit their free throws something they didn't do as well against Carolina.

Coach K is a pretty straight shooter. He has never, at least as far as I have heard, said this is a great team. However, he seems to like them and feels good about what they can do over the next two weeks.

What is great about college basketball is that it will all be decided on the court. Duke does not have to rely on anyone. It has only itself to rely on, and I think we have a lot there. Watch Kyle hit a shot or two and then suddenly find spring in his step. Watch G rebound a shot, make a shot or two, realize that all is well with the wrist it "only" just hurts. :D

I am cautiously optimistic...then again I was cautiously optimistic when we had a guy named Hurley and Hill playing too. So, I am always this way in March.

GO DUKE!

BCGroup
03-18-2008, 11:24 AM
With a perspective from the Big East, I would warn that WVU could be a serious threat to Duke if the make it past Zona (which I think they should). They are a team where I really don't think their seeding does them justice. They are a good defensive team, good 3-pt shooters, and has an emerging star in Alexander. Plus, like him or hate him, Huggins is a good and experienced coach with really nothing to lose this year but a lot to gain. I think they match up well with Duke and would have a good chance of knocking them off.

I sure hope not. My neighbor is a HUGE UNC fan, and he takes great delight in giving me grief. His other team---WVU. He's had a WVU flag out since Sunday night (hmmm, giving up his Tarheels for a week I guess...).

DU Band Prez 88
03-18-2008, 11:33 AM
Have to beat Belmont first...don't even want to think about the 2nd round game yet. They need to first win Thursday night, hopefully convincingly. Then, we worry about whose Saturday's opponent is.

On the other side of the bracket, no one is talking about Drake. I see them advancing to at least the round of 16 - yes, beating UConn. I also like Baylor to take out Purdue and perhaps the winner of Xavier/Georgia.

drdukeblue33
03-18-2008, 12:58 PM
i think either wv or zona will be a challenging matchup. Both teams come from power conferences and have played tough opponents. They offer contrasting styles. I have seen both play several times and if you look at our losses neither team has the really powerful inside presence that has caused us problems. So again it comes down to our execution. Can we get to the foul line? need to avoid these quick threes in transition and singler needs to force the action to the basket without charging. The addition of zoubek may pay real benefits this week especially against these opponents.
wv alexander is not a power player and their guards are not the great speed penetrators that hurt us. However they don't turn it over and play very good team defense. Thus it could be an ugly game possesion by possesion if we can't force the action. Zona has a good freshman guard who hesitates to his left and tends to drive and thenpull up for jumper. their soph star can go off but we tend to defend that type of player very well.
i sense some realistic concern that we don't display the ability to turn it on and take over in winning time like has been our trademark till last year. Hopefully will find it this weekend and that will be the difference. first time poster. followed duke since 1963. attended during the bubas to bucky transition. i have a good feeling about the next two weeks. sense k feels team ready.

moonpie23
03-18-2008, 01:19 PM
i have a good feeling about the next two weeks. sense k feels team ready.


i hope you are right......

The Gordog
03-18-2008, 02:32 PM
Apparently, the Verizon center will be open (http://www.verizoncenter.com/events/calendar.php?opts=detail&eid=2506&evtype=special) tomorrow from 11-8 for open practices. Duke's is scheduled for 4:25 - 5:05. (Seems awefully short to me.) Has anyone been to one of these events before? Is there any opportunity for interaction with the players?
I would like to take my 6 year old son down for the event, but I don't want to get his hopes up too much if we are going to be kept away from everybody the whole time.
Thanks!

weezie
03-18-2008, 02:38 PM
Any open sessions I've been to are strictly a bone thrown to the fans. The players do a brief warm-up, lay-up line, shoot around. The players wave and stroll off the court.There is usually no way to interact with them unless you are right on the tunnel as they emerge and you might get an autograph. The ushers at the Verizon Center are notorious for their zealous enforcement of boundaries.
Good luck.

hc5duke
03-18-2008, 03:00 PM
Hm. Isn't DC more like Central Campus, with NYC being "Duke North"?

;)

Actually, since our main campus is in New Jersey, DC would be more like Duke South.

gotham devil
03-18-2008, 03:25 PM
Hm. Isn't DC more like Central Campus, with NYC being "Duke North"?

;)

Very astute, Mr. Corey :)

BTW, not that I was imbibing, but the bars of Manhattan were packed with Duke fans for the recent UNC-Chapel Hill game. Given the distance and relative size of the school, it's still pleasantly amazing to see a noticable presence in this metropolis.

dukegirlinsc
03-18-2008, 03:57 PM
Every "open practice" I've been to in larger arenas has been a waste of time. Good for taking pictures from far away, that's about all.

The Gordog
03-18-2008, 04:28 PM
Thanks, y'all.

ice-9
03-19-2008, 10:17 AM
Wow, talk about a consensus pick:

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/basketball/ncaa/men/2008/ncaa_tourney/brackets/experts/index.html?eref=T1

Though if I viewed the tournament without my Duke blue colored glasses, I'd have to say UCLA is a sensible pick.

juise
03-19-2008, 10:40 AM
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/basketball/ncaa/men/2008/ncaa_tourney/brackets/experts/index.html?eref=T1

Four of the five pick Xavier to knock Duke out in the Sweet 16 and the other pick WVU take us out in the second round. I like it when people pick against us.

RepoMan
03-19-2008, 12:48 PM
When asked which double digit seed will make the Sweet 16, Bilas responds:

Bilas: No. 10 Arizona Wildcats

KyDevilinIL
03-19-2008, 01:01 PM
http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/ncaatourney08/columns/story?columnist=lunardi_joe&id=3300831

...and Joe picks us to lose to Arizona in round 2.

I like that there's no real consensus as to who is going to beat Duke, just that Duke is going to lose before the regional final. We earned this sort of sentiment over the last month or so, but it's still interesting to see how little faith the "experts" have in this team. Some talking heads have us reaching the Elite Eight, but to others we almost barely seem worthy of being in the tournament.

houstondukie
03-19-2008, 03:43 PM
Not a single "expert" thinks Duke will make the final four. I can't remember a yr. where a #2 seed was picked by so many to essentially have no chance at the final four. Even some 3 and 4 seeds are picked by some to make the final four this yr. No love for Duke, but I really couldn't care less.

_Gary
03-19-2008, 03:52 PM
Not a single "expert" thinks Duke will make the final four. I can't remember a yr. where a #2 seed was picked by so many to essentially have no chance at the final four. Even some 3 and 4 seeds are picked by some to make the final four this yr. No love for Duke, but I really couldn't care less.

Yeah, I honestly couldn't care less and want to see how this team responds when there are literally no expectations from the outside (I'm sure Coach K and the team have high expectations for themselves, but that's different). Having said that, it is really bizarre that not one media figure I know of is picking Duke, and quite a few seem to think we will not even advance past the first weekend. Boy I'd relish seeing Duke make a bunch of people eat their words.


Gary

drdukeblue33
03-19-2008, 04:10 PM
we went 13-3 in conference, 27-5 overall, played two really intense games with nc and clemson that one shot either way could have been 2 wins. no respect. if we bring our a game we will win sat. and i like our chances in phoenix. ucla easily could have lost 6 games, 3 in the last 2 weeks. they have some weaknesses and their outside shooting is not consistent and in a one game scenario we would have a good chance for a w. the underlying duke haters are licking their chops but in the past this has been the scenario that k relishes. remember georgetown 1990, unlv 1991, indiana 92, arkansas 1990, temple 88,kansas 86, purdue 94, are just some examples where the pundits thought we were headed down for a big L.

jipops
03-19-2008, 10:06 PM
I mean seriously, NOBODY picked Xavier in this thread's poll? They're arguably the second best team in the region and not one person here gave them a nod to the FF!? One person picked Purdue, a mediocre team from an extremely weak conference, but no Xavier.

Hey, I hope everyone here, except for the Purdue voter, is right then. That may actually mean we get past the 16.

ice-9
03-19-2008, 10:30 PM
I personally fail to see what the nation's love fest with Xavier is about. I actually think Xavier is the weakest 3 seed in the tourney. Let's look at their resume...

Non-conference foes of note that they beat:
- Indiana
- Kent St
- Kansas St

Two of their wins are against freshmen-dependent teams, which, while they can be good, can also be inconsistent especially when played 1) early in the season and 2) on neutral/home courts as the two games were played. Kent St is a good team and a good win, but hardly season-defining for a 3-seed.

Now let's look at who they lost to:
- Miami Ohio
- Arizona St by 22(!) points
- Tennessee by 7 points
- Temple by 19(!) points
- St. Joe's (twice)

Two of the teams they lost to didn't even make the tournament, but the 22 point loss to Arizona State is particularly disturbing. They also lost by 19 points to Temple, a team we defeated by 10 points at Temple!

Xavier is a team that I think is overrated at the 3 seed. It's a team with three decent wins and some very bad losses padded by a lot of victories in a conference ranked 7th in the RPI. Folks, that's worse than the Weak 10 which the ACC destroyed.

Given all the above, I find it puzzling so many expect us to lose to them. I fear U-Conned so much more than the X.

Mudge
03-20-2008, 01:33 AM
I personally fail to see what the nation's love fest with Xavier is about. I actually think Xavier is the weakest 3 seed in the tourney. Let's look at their resume...

Non-conference foes of note that they beat:
- Indiana
- Kent St
- Kansas St

Two of their wins are against freshmen-dependent teams, which, while they can be good, can also be inconsistent especially when played 1) early in the season and 2) on neutral/home courts as the two games were played. Kent St is a good team and a good win, but hardly season-defining for a 3-seed.

Now let's look at who they lost to:
- Miami Ohio
- Arizona St by 22(!) points
- Tennessee by 7 points
- Temple by 19(!) points
- St. Joe's (twice)

Two of the teams they lost to didn't even make the tournament, but the 22 point loss to Arizona State is particularly disturbing. They also lost by 19 points to Temple, a team we defeated by 10 points at Temple!

Xavier is a team that I think is overrated at the 3 seed. It's a team with three decent wins and some very bad losses padded by a lot of victories in a conference ranked 7th in the RPI. Folks, that's worse than the Weak 10 which the ACC destroyed.

Given all the above, I find it puzzling so many expect us to lose to them. I fear U-Conned so much more than the X.

You make a bunch of good points about Xavier-- they have been inconsistent in losing to Miami, ASU, and Temple (teams they should not have lost to). However, they have a lot of talent (and are in fact very similar to Duke, with a lot of distributed scoring, a lot of different guys who can make the outside shot and lead them in scoring, pretty good perimeter defense, and not much size in the middle.) The only problem with your analysis is that if they get past the games they are favored to win, they are prototype of the team that plays over-their-heads, inspired basketball to give higher seeded teams hell-- Xavier should have beaten Ohio State last year, and on their day, they can beat anyone in this tourney field-- they just aren't consistent.

dkbaseball
03-20-2008, 08:28 AM
I mean seriously, NOBODY picked Xavier in this thread's poll? They're arguably the second best team in the region and not one person here gave them a nod to the FF!? One person picked Purdue, a mediocre team from an extremely weak conference, but no Xavier.

Hey, I hope everyone here, except for the Purdue voter, is right then. That may actually mean we get past the 16.

Jim Boeheim, who picked the NCAA winner correctly for something like six years in a row, is very down on Xavier. Said that he can't have very high regard for anyone who lost twice to St. Joseph's. He was surprisingly candid, also viciously dissing Stanford's guard play. Certainly gave me pause, as I was thinking Stanford might come out of the South region.

While I didn't vote for Purdue, I wouldn't be surprised to see them win the region, as I regard them as one of the elite teams in the tournament. In the middle of the conference season they were playing as well as anybody in the country. I'd much, much rather see Duke play Xavier in the round of 16 than Purdue.

As a betting aside: stone cold locks today, IMO -- Purdue giving three to Baylor, and under 136 for the Wisconsin-Fullerton game. But we'll see.

moonpie23
03-20-2008, 11:16 AM
i feel like most NON- duke fans are still dwelling the the dismal showing of last year, hoping that duke is "done" in general. they are voicing their wishes on another negative time, the miami and wake games, as indications duke can't get it done.

let's keep in mind who duke has beaten this season, how they've played and what they are capable of.


i would not bet the farm AGAINST this duke team,,,

mr. synellinden
03-20-2008, 11:27 AM
I mean seriously, NOBODY picked Xavier in this thread's poll? They're arguably the second best team in the region and not one person here gave them a nod to the FF!? One person picked Purdue, a mediocre team from an extremely weak conference, but no Xavier.

Hey, I hope everyone here, except for the Purdue voter, is right then. That may actually mean we get past the 16.

Xavier is very good. They could easily make the final four. I am almost as worried about them as I am about UCLA.

stals
03-20-2008, 12:11 PM
UGA leads Xavier 35-26 at the half. Xavier looks "rattled" according to the CBS blog.

BlueBlood112883
03-20-2008, 12:13 PM
UGA has took Xavier out of what they want to do. It's one and done on the offensive end for X, and without Brown draining a few treys this lead could be even bigger for UGA. That 1-3-1 Zone Felton switched to late has thrown Xavier for a loop too. Brilliant coaching move, and might be what helps UGA pull off the upset.

Acymetric
03-20-2008, 12:14 PM
I picked them for this win in every bracket I filled out. My concern here is that Xavier won't keep shooting in the 35% range and Georgia won't keep shooting in the 55% range. I'm pulling for them hard though, if for no other reason than that this is so likely. And I'd feel more comfortable matching up with Georgia than Xavier, but maybe not if they're on a roll like this.

Stray Gator
03-20-2008, 12:15 PM
Xavier is very good. They could easily make the final four. I am almost as worried about them as I am about UCLA.

They certainly didn't look very impressive in the first half against the Dawgs, who have outhustled and outshot Xavier to take a 9-point lead.

devildownunder
03-20-2008, 12:32 PM
Xavier simply is not running its offense at all. They have had zero patience at that end of the floor. If they can just play their game, they can rally.

EarlJam
03-20-2008, 12:36 PM
My co-worker has Xavier beating Duke.

At the moment, I dance on her grave!

-EJ

devildownunder
03-20-2008, 12:41 PM
My co-worker has Xavier beating Duke.

At the moment, I dance on her grave!

-EJ


His team has been in desperate need of a timeout to fix its HUGE offensive problems for the whole 2nd half, cuz whatever advice he's giving during gameplay, IT AIN'T WORKIN! But he is hoarding his TOs as if he has just one left for the game. I don't understand this philosophy. You need to hold one or two timeouts for the stretch but he has let them flounder around all over the place looking clueless against georgia's changing defenses almost the entire game without once taking a timeout to address things. His players look confused.

I guess I am, too.

loran16
03-20-2008, 12:56 PM
CAN WE STOP THE JINXING PLEASE?

Nothing annoys me more than posts like "Xavier's down 11,they're going to lose!" when there's 15 minutes left. Seriously!

DUKIECB
03-20-2008, 01:08 PM
Looks like Xavier finally found their form.

_Gary
03-20-2008, 01:16 PM
Looks like Xavier finally found their form.

Yikes. Xavier does look really solid. Big *if* I know, but if we face up with them I can see why we'd be the underdogs even though we are seeded higher.

Gary

devildownunder
03-20-2008, 01:16 PM
I can't believe Gaines actually leads Georgia in points,assts,rebs&steals. That's just stoopid! You have to go to a "Jordan rules" defense against Uga down the stretch, right?


and Wow! what a layup by Brown!

loran16
03-20-2008, 01:17 PM
CAN WE STOP THE JINXING PLEASE?

Nothing annoys me more than posts like "Xavier's down 11,they're going to lose!" when there's 15 minutes left. Seriously!

-As i said. Seriously.

ALso, Georrgia's just dead. Lavendar basically just drove in unchallenged.

EDIT: Look at the free throw totals...and people say we get officiating. </sarcasm>

devildownunder
03-20-2008, 01:20 PM
Yikes. Xavier does look really solid. Big *if* I know, but if we face up with them I can see why we'd be the underdogs even though we are seeded higher.

Gary


I think some zone would be in order for us against Xavier, of course I'm basing this on nothing but what i've seen today and 1 other game from before January, so my opinion isn't all that informed yet.

loran16
03-20-2008, 01:25 PM
JUMP? How was that not a foul? Jeez, talk about terrible officiating.


Note: this is awful broadcasting. Previously a Georgia player got called for a foul
wanted a clean block, and replay showed a clean block.

The commentators go :"he wanted a clean block" *sees the replay* *silence*

So bad.

_Gary
03-20-2008, 01:27 PM
Not that Georgia was going to win (and it's not over as I type this), but they have had a couple of tough calls go against them, including a great block of a breakaway. If Xavier wins this thing by only a couple of points I'm going to be sick.

Gary

P.S. I agree with loran16. I kinda got the vibe that the announcers were pulling for Xavier more so than Georgia. Not blatant or anything, but when either team would score they seemed much more animated with a Xavier bucket. A big "Yes!!!" each time.

devildownunder
03-20-2008, 01:29 PM
JUMP? How was that not a foul? Jesus christ, talk about terrible officiating.


Note: this is awful broadcasting. Previously a Georgia player got called for a foul
wanted a clean block, and replay showed a clean block.

The commentators go :"he wanted a clean block" *sees the replay* *silence*

So bad.



that jumpball call was an eye-opener. Ugh, I hope the officials don't become a story. So far, I don't think they are.

loran16
03-20-2008, 01:31 PM
Game over. i dont understand the Georgia strategy at the end. It was just like they were fouling with no strategy whatsoever. Ugh.

And people say this Xavier team is going to beat us and UCLA? Ridiculous.

VaDukie
03-20-2008, 01:43 PM
Xavier had an awful lot of help from the black and white at the end of the game.

_Gary
03-20-2008, 01:43 PM
And people say this Xavier team is going to beat us and UCLA? Ridiculous.

I have gone on record as saying Duke will emerge victorious out of this West Region, but I'm not about to down this Xavier team. They were the superior team today and their defense was flat out fantastic. Looks like a real threat to me. Nevertheless, they did get the benefit of several bad calls in the last 4 minutes of the game.

Chard
03-20-2008, 01:52 PM
When X was down and the offense didn't look so good they picked up the defense. And it worked.

Bob Green
03-20-2008, 02:04 PM
Xavier made 81.8% of their free throws. Shooting over 80% as a team is impressive.

Chard
03-20-2008, 02:12 PM
Yeah, that too. Although they did miss early.

Bob Green
03-20-2008, 02:45 PM
Yeah, that too. Although they did miss early.

Xavier made 27 of 33 attempts. After starting 2 of 6, they made 25 of 27 the rest of the way. My point being, if we end up playing Xavier in the Sweet 16, we need to limit their trips to the charity stripe.

grc5
03-20-2008, 03:58 PM
I don't know what we'd do if we wind up facing Purdue: they're basically a poor man's Duke. They turn you over on defense, have half a dozen guys who can shoot, and execute their offense really well.

Magnolia888
03-20-2008, 04:40 PM
More "Duke's going down" chatter:

No Country for Coach K (http://sports.yahoo.com/ncaab/blog/ncaab_experts/post/West-Regional-No-Country-for-Coach-K?urn=ncaab,72570)

Having seen the movie, I thought this was pretty funny at least. Where is Carla Jean, I wonder?

Edouble
03-20-2008, 05:15 PM
I was mulling over the possibility of Phoenix (if we were to make it into next weekend) being a sort of "Meadowlands out West" for Duke, with Grant Hill and Mike D'Antoni sitting behind the Duke bench, getting the crowd on the Blue Devil's side. Unfortunately, checking the Sun's schedule, it looks like they'll be in the middle of an East coast road trip at the time. It makes sense that they'll be away, since they don't want to be be playing NBA games with the tourney in town, but I thought maybe the team would be close by enough for those two guys to fly home and sit behind the Duke bench in between their pro games.

Oh well...

pless55
03-20-2008, 07:15 PM
I would hope that Arizona wins tonight as while they are very talented they don't play up to their potential. Playing West Virginia with the way they have been playing could be a dangerous game.

pless55
03-20-2008, 07:16 PM
I wouldn't want to play Xavier as they have a number of good players who can beat you. Remember back in 04 when we had a great team and still barely beat Xavier.

pless55
03-20-2008, 07:28 PM
Remember Ohio State with Greg Oden last year took a last second shot by Lewis to beat Xavier in the second year.

devildeac
03-20-2008, 08:48 PM
can i change my vote based on tonight's game?:(

jipops
03-20-2008, 11:01 PM
WOW. UCLA held MVS to 29pts for an entire game. Talk about some serious domination.

wiscodevil
03-21-2008, 10:04 AM
too bad they lost. I don't know if I have ever seen a less inspired team.

Bring on the mountaineers!

throatybeard
03-21-2008, 01:45 PM
Drake is in the process of a big comeback, now down just one.

The Brando unkind just said, after Drake's Young his a three, "only the young survive." What does that even mean?

Troublemaker
03-21-2008, 01:48 PM
C'mon, that was a blocking foul, not a charge on WKy.

EarlJam
03-21-2008, 01:48 PM
Drake is in the process of a big comeback, now down just one.

The Brando unkind just said, after Drake's Young his a three, "only the young survive." What does that even mean?

Sounds like he got it confused with, "Only the good die young?"

Still makes no sense.

Maybe he's wasted.

-EarlJam

JasonEvans
03-21-2008, 01:49 PM
Ummm, wow, I thought that charge call with 22 seconds left was really a bad call.

That said, apparently WKy. had nothing designed for the most important out-of-bounds play of their season. Duuuh!

I am furious right now because I have Wky in a pool where seeds are weighted and I really need them to win to give me a ton of bonus points as a #12 seed. Grrrr.

--Jason "I think Drake wins in OT, the team that made the furious comeback almost always wins in the OT" Evans

blazindw
03-21-2008, 02:11 PM
Great game against Drake, goes to overtime, Western Kentucky hits a 3 at the buzzer to win 101-99 over Drake!!! Incredible shot!

jacone21
03-21-2008, 02:18 PM
Great game against Drake, goes to overtime, Western Kentucky hits a 3 at the buzzer to win 101-99 over Drake!!! Incredible shot!

ONIONS!!!!!!!

wiscodevil
03-21-2008, 02:22 PM
game tied at 96, 30 sec left in regulation. over the limit.why did wky chase drak and hack?

unbelievable game.

Chard
03-21-2008, 03:19 PM
Anybody watching/listening to the San Diego/UConn game? Could we see the upset? San Diego is up by 3 with 3:17 to go in the first. My fingers are crossed.

feldspar
03-21-2008, 03:21 PM
Anybody watching/listening to the San Diego/UConn game? Could we see the upset? San Diego is up by 3 with 3:17 to go in the first. My fingers are crossed.

It's only the first half.

sagegrouse
03-21-2008, 03:36 PM
Its side of the bracket is getting easier--

First #12 Western Kentucky beat #5 seeded Drake.

Now #4 UConn is losing, and, more important, star guard A.J. Price was carried off the court with a knee injury and is now sitting on the bench with a huge icepack.

sagegrouse

Duvall
03-21-2008, 03:38 PM
Its side of the bracket is getting easier--

First #12 Western Kentucky beat #5 seeded Drake.

Now #4 UConn is losing, and, more important, star guard A.J. Price was carried off the court with a knee injury and is now sitting on the bench with a huge icepack.

sagegrouse

It ain't like Drake or UConn was going to beat them anyway.

Truth
03-21-2008, 03:43 PM
Its side of the bracket is getting easier--

First #12 Western Kentucky beat #5 seeded Drake.

Now #4 UConn is losing, and, more important, star guard A.J. Price was carried off the court with a knee injury and is now sitting on the bench with a huge icepack.

sagegrouse

I'll be happy to see UConn lose regardless of whether that eases UCLA's road...

(and I'll also add that I think a Mod should consolidate this thread into the "March Madness conversation: West Region" topic)

billybreen
03-21-2008, 03:53 PM
UCon looks atrocious. Doesn't do my bracket any favors, but I'll be happy to see it.

socaldukie
03-21-2008, 04:39 PM
SD up by 4 52+ seconds remain

socaldukie
03-21-2008, 04:44 PM
here we go .....

socaldukie
03-21-2008, 04:48 PM
nice fo CBS to get this type of game in the middle of the day and no tv

socaldukie
03-21-2008, 04:51 PM
smart of UConn to apply full court pressure

77devil
03-21-2008, 05:11 PM
But I am not holding my breath.

TNTDevil
03-21-2008, 05:12 PM
Yes! The Toreros are my new favorite team!

Way-to-go San Diego!

YmoBeThere
03-21-2008, 05:12 PM
Agreed...it was wonderful to watch another UCONN loss.

sagegrouse
03-21-2008, 05:13 PM
#1 UCLA
#9 Texas A&M

#12 Western Ky
#13 San Diego

It's good to see UConn lose at any time, but strategically, they could have done a job on UCLA.

sagegrouse

freedevil
03-21-2008, 05:13 PM
Haha. Ain't that the truth.

Smitty1911
03-21-2008, 05:14 PM
Doesn't help my bracket any, but in this case it's worth it!!

ambitiouspear
03-21-2008, 05:18 PM
I dislike UConn as much as any other diehard Duke fan but if UConn stayed in it to play UCLA, maybe they could have taken them down (or at least would have a better shot than WKU or SD)...

JBDuke
03-21-2008, 05:19 PM
Okay, this post will be non-contributory and should be removed by one of my fellow mods, but....

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Duvall
03-21-2008, 05:20 PM
I dislike UConn as much as any other diehard Duke fan but if UConn stayed in it to play UCLA, maybe they could have taken them down (or at least would have a better shot than WKU or SD)...

UConn losing carries its own reward. It's not like Duke has the luxury of worrying about UCLA right now.

slower
03-21-2008, 05:20 PM
my sentiments exactly - karma, baby!

HaveFunExpectToWin
03-21-2008, 05:21 PM
Doesn't help my bracket any, but in this case it's worth it!!

This one actually helped my bracket a little. Unfortunately, I had Drake beating SD in the next game.