Posted on: October 19, 2011 9:14 am

Coach K says schools leaving NCAA 'could happen'

By Matt Norlander

From our Rapid Reports last night (and if you're wondering what Rapid Reports are, click here), Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski offered up an interesting quote about conference realignment and the somewhat unstable marriages of college and the NCAA.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski thinks if the NCAA wants to keep the top conferences, it needs to change its prospect contact rules.

“The old NCAA is no longer,” Krzyzewski said. “To go back can’t happen. The NCAA needs to change. I’d hate to see the top conferences not be a part of it, and that could happen.”
Many believe the big schools will one day shuffle away from the NCAA, once they have the money (read: power) to do so. When arguably the greatest coach in the history of the sport is talking like that's a possibility, the NCAA has a problem.

Today is ACC media day. I'm sure K may get asked about this once or twice.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: October 17, 2011 1:16 pm

Miles Plumlee can become Duke's backbone

By Jeff Goodman

After shuttling between North Carolina and Duke for a couple days on Thursday and Friday, I took a break from my annual Midnight Madness road trip for a family function down in Florida over the weekend.

Now it's back on the road, with the first stop coming today in Columbus with Ohio State.

I'm going to catch Buckeyes practice, may even take a charge from Jared Sullinger and will also give Aaron Craft an opportunity for redemption after his singing exhibition a year ago.

But before I move forward to the Buckeyes, let's still flip back to Tobacco Road. Here's my column (and video) of Tar Heels sophomore Harrison Barnes -- and how he appears far more comfortable these days than he did a year ago. While there aren't a ton of question marks with UNC, that's not the case down the road at Duke, where just about everyone on the team has a new role.

Austin Rivers has high expectations placed upon him as a highly touted freshman, but the most impressive and consistent player, according to the Duke coaching staff, has been senior big man Miles Plumlee. Plumlee (pictured above dunking over little brother Marshall during Friday night's festivities) has been an enigma for his first three seasons in Durham. Blessed with size and athleticism, the issue for Plumlee, more than anything else, has been confidence.

But after a summer in which he actually got away from Duke, Plumlee came back bigger, stronger and with a swagger. He dominated practice on Friday afternoon against the middle Plumlee, Mason, and Ryan Kelly. He was a presence in the middle and had one spectacular dunk that would have made Doug Gottlieb re-consider his comment of Duke being "un-athletic."

The 23-year-old Plumlee has a different look to him now. He's up to at 255 pounds after spending the summer working out with Marquis Jet co-founder Jesse Itzler in New York. Itzler also owns a company called Hundred Mile Group, where Plumlee interned this summer.

"Working out with him is no joke," Plumlee said.

Plumlee admitted when he arrived at Duke he wasn't sure he belonged. Remember, he committed to Stanford and was a late pick-up for the Blue Devils after the coaching change that sent Trent Johnson to LSU and, ironically, Duke assistant Johnny Dawkins to Palo Alto. It's taken time not just for Plumlee to understand he belongs, but to sustain that belief.

"I'm the senior leader now," he said. "I never had to step up before. I have to take ownership in this team."

Plumlee realizes they'll be those that won't believe it until they see it in the games - and that's alright.

"Now it's time for me to show it when it counts," Plumlee said.

Photo: AP
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: October 14, 2011 3:50 pm
Edited on: October 14, 2011 6:12 pm

Meet Duke's starting point guard: Seth Curry

By Jeff Goodman

DURHAM, N.C. - Stephen Curry made the transition at Davidson a few years back.

Now Seth Curry is doing the same at Duke.

The younger Curry, who has spent his entire college career playing shooting guard, will slide over to the point guard spot this season.

And almost certainly start for the Blue Devils.

"It's a little weird," Curry admitted. "I'm still learning - and am in the early stages. But I think I'm handling it well."

"It's different. I'm used to just worrying about myself," added Curry, regarded (not unlike his brother) as a knock-down shooter. "Now I've got to get everyone involved in the offense. I can't just worry about myself."

Curry said the last time he played point guard was as a senior in high school. He spent most of his time at Liberty playing off the ball - and did the same for nearly all of last year.

"It just fell into place," Curry said of being the frontrunner to start at point guard. "I wasn't brought here as a point guard, but it's a great opportunity."

Curry said he did pick up experience running the second unit two years ago - against Jon Scheyer and Nolan Smith - while he was sitting out following his transfer.

Curry said he has spoken to his older brother, who is now with Golden State in the NBA, and heeded his advice on going through the transition.

"He told me to just be who I am," Seth said. "Don't lose your aggressiveness. Still be a scorer. For me, I have to find that balance."

Obviously, Stephen Curry had to do it all at Davidson, averaging 28.6 points and 5.6 assists in his junior campaign when he slid over to the point guard spot.

Seth, who is about the same height and weight as his older brother, knows he won't have to put up gaudy numbers with guys like Austin Rivers, the Plumlee Brothers (Miles and Mason), Ryan Kelly and Andre Dawkins surrounding him.

"We may not have guys that have proven themselves yet, but we have a lot of talent," Seth said.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: October 14, 2011 9:39 am
Edited on: October 14, 2011 2:58 pm
Posted on: October 14, 2011 9:11 am
Edited on: October 14, 2011 2:59 pm

It's Madness Day and we are everywhere

By Gary Parrish

LEXINGTON, Ky -- It's Big Blue Madness Day in Kentucky, and folks really do like blue around here. They wear blue shirts and blue hats; I've even seen some blue shoes. And I'm not talking about students, exclusively. Old people wear lots of blue, too. It's a little crazy, but I'd expect nothing less from the nation's most passionate fan base as their national-championship-caliber team prepares to open practice tonight at Rupp Arena.

I will be there.

Then I'll spend Saturday with Louisville.

And Sunday with Vanderbilt.

Season tips Nov. 7
And Monday with Memphis.

Meaning my next four days will be spent with the coaches who have the teams ranked No. 2 (Kentucky), No. 7 (Vanderbilt), No. 8 (Louisville) and No. 9 (Memphis) in our preseason Top 25 (and one). Meantime, my colleague Jeff Goodman is spending the next two days with No. 1 North Carolina and No. 6 Duke, then he'll be with No. 5 Ohio State on Monday. My colleague Matt Norlander is with No. 3 Connecticut. My colleague Jeff Borzello is with No. 4 Syracuse.

What does that mean?

It means CBSSports.com staff writers will spend the next four days with the teams ranked first to ninth in the preseason Top 25 (and one), and I'm not sure any website or newspaper in America (or any other country in the world, for that matter) can match how we're attacking this college basketball season. So you're in the right place. We've already had Jerry Palm project the Field of 68, and Goodman and I have filled out his bracket. We've got conference previews running daily, and columns on North Carolina, Kentucky, Connecticut and Syracuse up now.

Check them out.

Check everything out.

Then bookmark this blog and keep coming back.

Because we aren't planning to slow down until at least mid-April.

Posted on: October 13, 2011 4:00 pm
Edited on: October 13, 2011 4:07 pm

Duke doc to depict title teams as temperamental

By Matt Norlander

If it's about Duke, we're always interested.

If it's about Duke's much-hated, much-respected title teams from the early '90s, we're increasingly interested.

And if's about that team being a group of troublesome, dysfunction miscreants, then GOODNESS WHERE DO WE SIGN UP.

According to USA Today, there is a documentary being made about the Blue Devils' '91 and '92 championship teams that's set to air on Turner Sports' networks in March. Grant Hill and Christian Laettner (pictured above, right, with immortal hair god Thomas Hill) are co-executive producers of the doc, which will be filled with interviews from players, coaches and team managers who played a part in creating one of the most polarizing teams in the history of college basketball.

Turns out, there was plenty of tension on the team as well, some of it intentionally planted by Mike Krzyzewski, who told Laettner and other captains behind closed doors to keep the team on edge.

Here's an anecdote courtesy of USA Today:
Hurley, a street smart player from Jersey City, drove the lane anticipating Laettner would step in for the charge, but instead of dumping a pass to Laettner's man, who was open, Hurley whipped the ball into Laettner's face. "Of course it was intentional," Laettner said. The 6-11 Laettner chased Hurley, listed at 6-2, out of the gym but couldn't catch him. ...

"I taunted him, told him he sucked and he needed to go home, and I've apologized for all that," Laettner said. "I was hard on Bobby, but I also remember the first time I saw him play. It was like, 'Wow, I get to play with this kid.'"

The documentary, according to (Grant) Hill, will tell how Duke's 1992 team stayed on an edge that Laettner and Brian Davis helped create. That whole season was about the big picture, a legacy. In 1992, Duke was 17-0 before it finally lost, 75-73 to North Carolina on Feb. 5, and Hill figured Krzyzewski would not waste time re-sharpening the blade.

"The next day I took a nap because I figured practice that day was going to be long and hard," Hill said. "You know what Coach K did? He took us over to the football stadium for an ice cream sundae party. I was thinking, 'Did Coach bump his head or something?' It shows you something about the genius of the man."
That is genuinely hysterial.

Well-done sports documentaries have become more and more frequent in the past three years, and I think we're in a golden age of storytelling in the genre. College basketball has plenty of serial and seminal moments from its past still worth going back and visiting. Duke's back-to-back title-winning seasons are chief among the most interesting subject matter we have. Really looking forward to this doc, as I'm pretty certain it will only reinforce my unabashed hate for Laettner and love for Tommy Hill.

(Oh my God, oh my God.)

We'd better get at least 10 minutes devoted to Duke-Kentucky in '92.

Photo: AP
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: September 15, 2011 10:13 am

McGary's parents favor Duke; AAU coach Michigan

By Jeff Goodman

WOLFEBORO, N.H. - Exactly one year ago, the question from coaches was whether or not Mitch McGary could play in the Big Ten - or another big-time league.

Now he's the No. 2 player in the nation.

The 6-foot-10 McGary, an Indiana native spending his second year at Brewster Academy (N.H.), has taken three visits and could take three more.

McGary went to Michigan for a rainy football game a few weeks ago, where he hung out with fellow Chesterton High (Ind.) product Zack Novak. Then he went to North Carolina and most recently, took an trip to Duke.

McGary didn't deny the fact that his parents favor Duke while his summer coach with the SYF team, Wayne Brumm, likes Michigan.

He also said he's still taking it all in right now.

"I'm keeping quiet," he said. "I'm putting it down on paper and seeing what school fits me. I'm not sure when I'll commit."

Could today be the day?

It's when Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski will travel to Brewster and meet with McGary.

Roy Williams and John Beilein were both at the school on Wednesday. Billy Donovan and Mark Turgeon came earlier in the week while John Calipari is set to make an appearance on Saturday.

"It's brutal trying to figure it all out, but I know I have great options," he said.

Ones that weren't there a year ago.

McGary said he would like to take visits to Florida, Kentucky and Maryland - but he's not sure if and when that will happen.
Posted on: September 13, 2011 9:59 pm
Edited on: September 13, 2011 10:27 pm

Coach K took a limo to see Jabari Parker

By Gary Parrish

You know that report that estimated Duke basketball players are worth roughly $1 million each? Mike Krzyzewski must recognize there's something to the study. He spent Tuesday treating a prospect that way.
Word has it Duke rolled three deep, including Coach K, plus showed up in a limo to watch Jabari Parker's workout at Simeon tonight.
That's a Tweet from Scout.com's Evan Daniels. What it claims is that Krzyzewski and two assistants took a limo to Simeon High in Chicago to see the Class of 2013's top prospect on Tuesday, and that'll leave an impression, won't it? Yes, Kansas' Bill Self, Michigan State's Tom Izzo, Ohio State's Thad Matta, Illinois' Bruce Weber and various other coaches were also in the gym; they're all still involved with Parker, too. But it's difficult to quantify what it must mean to have the most powerful man in college basketball -- a coach with four national titles and a gold medal to boot -- fly to your hometown and take a limo just to observe your workout.

So will Parker be the next Million Dollar Blue Devil?

It's way too early to speculate on that.

But a limo at Simeon High on Tuesday probably didn't hurt Duke's chances.

That much, I know.

(Note: After I filed this I got a text from a source informing me that Krzyzewski also took a limo on Tuesday to see Julius Randle, the consensus No. 2 prospect in the Class of 2013. Translation: Duke is ballin'.)
Category: NCAAB
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com