Duke’s season is over, and that’s a rarity at this point in March. The Blue Devils had finally started to play well, or better, too. They had won two games in the ACC tournament before the season abruptly ended because of a positive COVID-19 test.
Not surprisingly, coach Mike Krzyzewski is hurting for his team, as relayed by veteran sportswriter John Feinstein.
“I texted with Krzyzewski yesterday and (he was) devastated,” Feinstein said on 106.7 The Fan. “He thought they could beat Florida State. They were finally playing pretty well. They beat a good Louisville team very handily on Wednesday night.”
Feinstein may have gone a little too far after that — citing a student newspaper story that accused Duke students of continuously interacting despite supposedly testing positive to the virus.
“There’s a story in the student newspaper at Duke that there are over 100 kids who are rushing fraternities that tested positive,” he said. “I thought Duke kids were supposed to be smart, wrong.”
As for the actual team, this is highly likely to be the first time the Blue Devils (13-11) have missed the NCAA Tournament since 1995. Interestingly, Kentucky isn’t going either, and this year will mark the first time neither program has made it since 1976.
“While our season was different than any other that I can remember, I loved the 2020-21 Duke Basketball team and was honored to be their coach,” Krzyzewski said in a statement. “We have not asked more of any team in our history, and they deserve enormous credit for handling everything like the outstanding young men they are. I feel deeply for our players, who have done a terrific job all season in taking care of each other and the team.
“I am extremely proud of their collective attitudes and effort, which could not have been stronger. We are disappointed we cannot keep fighting together as a group after two outstanding days in Greensboro. This season was a challenge for every team across the country and as we have seen over and over, this global pandemic is very cruel and is not yet over. As many safeguards as we implemented, no one is immune to this terrible virus.”