Duke Basketball Mailbag for August 16th

Photo Courtesy: Duke Athletics

In the last few days Coach K has had knee replacement surgery and Duke has landed two major recruits. On Sunday, Tyus Jones’ younger brother, Tre Jones committed to the Blue Devils. Then 24 hours later, Marvin Bagley III announced he was reclassifying into the class of 2017 and would be joining this year’s team.

With both commitments, fans have questions so we wanted to take a moment to answer them for you.

What will Bolden’s role be this year with Bagley on the team?

Before Bagley committed, it looked as if Bolden would be the starting center on this year’s team, while Wendell Carter Jr. would be the starting power forward. After Monday night’s announcement Bolden will more than likely be one of the first players off the bench. Duke’s starting lineup will likely be Duval, Allen, Trent Jr., Bagley, and Carter Jr. There will be times that you could see a lineup that includes Bagley, Carter, and Bolden on the front line. Given Duke’s injury history, he could easily move into the starting lineup if something were to happen to Bagley or Carter.

Will the sophomores have an impact this season?

Bolden seems to be the one who will have the most impact this season. If everyone stays healthy, DeLaurier should also have an impact as he will be asked to fill in at the power forward spot along side Marques off the bench. Jack White is still an unknown at this point. He can provide energy and defense off the bench, but his offense seems limited based on what we saw last year. Duke will need outside shooting which seems to suggest freshman Jordan Tucker would see more minutes this year than White.

Will this team be better than last year’s?

Last year’s team had one of the strangest seasons for a National Championship contender. They had to deal with a lot of injuries, Coach K’s surgery, and Grayson Allen’s suspension. Even with all that, they still won four straight games to win the ACC Championship and earn a #2 seed in the NCAA Tournament. This year’s team won’t go undefeated because of how tough ACC play is but if they stay healthy and keep the distractions to a minimum, they will be a contender for the National Championship. It will all depend on how well this group can mesh and play together.

Who could be the next commit?

Rivals.com has an interview Cameron Reddish in which he says that his decision is coming ‘sooner than people are expecting.’ Duke currently leads in the Crystal Ball for Reddish with 94%. Duke is also recruiting R.J. Barrett who plays the same position as Reddish so it could be a matter of who takes the spot first.

When do you think Coach K will retire?

With all the surgeries Coach K has had over the last few years, one would think it may not be much longer until arguably the greatest coach of all time hangs it up. Krzyzewski is currently 70 years old so it’s entirely possible that he will only coach for another 2-3 years max. Of course it seems for the last 5 years people have said he’ll only coach another 2-3 years.

Thanks to everyone for the questions. Make sure to hit us up on Twitter and Facebook.

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