Captain Jack White displays leadership and vast improvement for Duke men's basketball

Barrett scores 33, No. 4 Duke blows out No. 2 Kentucky in season opener

My head tells me Duke isn't going to play like that every night. But even with that and the fact Duke has the talent to reach the Final Four, I'm not booking a trip to Minneapolis after one game in the regular season.

No doubt about it: Tuesday night was historic.

Duke: The Blue Devils seem to have it all - athletes, scorers, defenders and rebounders. I nearly switched to Kansas, at one point, like most others.

Freshman superstars Zion Williamson, R.J. Barrett and Cam Reddish combined for 83 points in their college debuts, and the Blue Devils handed John Calipari his worst loss as a Kentucky coach, winning 118-84.

The freshmen sensations from Durham put on a show in Indianapolis that was nothing short of sensational, providing plenty of proof that the preseason hype surrounding them was justified.

Barrett was 13 of 26 from the field while Williamson was 11 of 13 with seven rebounds. Freshman wing Tyler Herro added 14 points, nine rebounds and five assists. But being almost ideal from the field is an easy task when you are a 6-foot-7, 285-pound freakishly athletic power forward who is able to dunk seemingly at will. The Wildcats are a perpetually young team but actually the more experienced team as they likely will start two freshmen to Duke's four. The small forward poured in 22 points, showing off a smooth stroke from beyond the arc, where he was 3-of-8, as well as from the charity stripe, where he was a ideal 7-of-7. Current and former National Basketball Association players who had an eye on the game were blown away by a team puzzlingly ranked third in the coaches poll and fourth in the AP poll. In other words, he too performed his role to near perfection.

Kansas led by as much as 17 in the first half after weathering an early 3-point flurry from Michigan State.

Duke hosts Krzyzewski's alma mater, Army, on Sunday. And he didn't make silly mistakes (zero turnovers). Barrett also knocked down jump shots as he connected on three of his seven 3-pointers.

And then there was Jack White. Especially when they're making plays like this on Day 1 of their college careers. Dude was BEASTING, scoring 28 points (on 11-13 shooting) and grabbing 7 rebounds.

That overall display - in a game that the Blue Devils entered as a slight underdog - is sure to be the primary topic amongst college basketball fans at water coolers in offices across the country for days to come.

Williamson and Barrett drove to the bucket at will against Kentucky's defense, and Duke as a whole shot 54 percent from the field and 46 percent from three, all while committing just four turnovers as a team.

Good luck with that.

Related:

Comments


Other news