Yahoo Sports’ Dan Wetzel and Sports Illustrated’s Pat Forde discuss the Duke Blue Devils in their first season under head coach Jon Scheyer, and debate what fans expectations should be for the Blue Devils in the NCAA Tournament.
PAT FORDE: They have rolled when they've had their full complement of players. So I'd say, look out for Duke. I think they have a great chance to go to the Final Four. And I think we're going to be talking about John Scheyer as a star by the end of this tournament.
DAN WETZEL: Jon Scheyer. First year coach at Duke. They were 17 and 8. It didn't look that great. Lost to Miami, Virginia back-to-back. There was just getting things going. And you didn't know. At any time they hand these jobs off to someone who's never coached-- which is still an amazing thing-- these universities just go with the coach-- and it's just nepotism.
It's not necessarily family. But sometimes it is. But it's just like, yeah, we're just going to give it to my assistant. I mean, it's-- (LAUGHING) important job. Who knows? Anyway, John Scheyer's won nine in a row. They've won their final nine.
Won the ACC. They're white-hot. They got players. They look good. I'm not saying he has to make a Final Four, but he needs a nice NCAA run.
He does not need a first-round loss. He does not need something that looks ugly. He needs a good thing to make people feel good about where Duke's headed and that he's the guy. Look, it's going to take six years before he proves that he's the right guy to follow Krzyzewski.
You can see that situation right over in Chapel Hill. But it takes a sustained success. But this is where it starts. So I think there's a little bit of pressure on Jon Scheyer to get popping.
PAT FORDE: Yeah. I think he's playing a little bit with house money here. And there are expectations. But you sweep North Carolina, and you win the ACC tournament in your first year? That's pretty good.
DAN WETZEL: I think it's good--
PAT FORDE: Now, he does have to--
DAN WETZEL: I just think people want to be reassured. He's not in any job. He did fine. He did a really good job. But yeah. You know what? Oral Roberts they should beat. And Oral Roberts is good, but they should beat Oral Roberts.
And I don't like Tennessee. I think they were good early. A Sweet 16 is not too much to ask out of Duke here.
PAT FORDE: I think I'm going to pick him to go to the Final Four.
DAN WETZEL: Well, there you go.
PAT FORDE: I think they were criminally under-seeded at a five. I think the Oral Roberts game is scary, though. You want to play that team? They went to the Sweet 16 two years ago and they've won 30 games! They haven't lost since January 9th!
DAN WETZEL: [INAUDIBLE]
PAT FORDE: I would not want to play Oral Roberts! But-- so here's the thing. You're Duke! (LAUGHING) You're Duke!
DAN WETZEL: I know! Yeah! You know what? Teams lose in the tournament! Oral Roberts as a 12 seed is a scary, scary opponent, I think. They probably have too much size, and they'll probably overwhelm Oral Roberts. So they beat-- I think since February on, they've been great.
They totally just lived on their laurels when they went down to Miami and got housed. That was right after they beat North Carolina. They got screwed against Virginia. They should have won that game in regulation. Terrible call. Cost them a chance to shoot free throws for the win late in that game.
And then they've won every other game since then. When they've had all their players-- because Dariq Whitehead had been hurt. Once they got him back, they have rolled when they've had their full complement of players. So I'd say, look out for Duke. I think they have a great chance to go to the Final Four. And I think we're going to be talking about John Scheyer as a star by the end of this tournament.
DAN WETZEL: All right. Here we go. Don't put any extra heat on them. I like what I've seen. I like when the team's getting better.