Mike Krzyzewski was right on when he called Mason one of the best in the country in October. Credit: CHUCK LIDDY
The postseason will officially be upon us at noon tomorrow, when the first game of the ACC Tournament tips. But before that, there is a bit of time to reflect on the regular season that was.
Ending the regular season with a 27-4 record was a major accomplishment for the Blue Devils. It would not have been unreasonable for them to have accumulated four losses in November alone (look back at the Battle 4 Atlantis field and remember the matchups with Kentucky and Ohio State). But Duke ran the table in the nonconference season and, to borrow a metaphor from Mike Krzyzewski, kept the ship afloat for the 13 games Ryan Kelly missed with his right foot injury.
The main reason for all of this success is two-fold: better defense (Duke ranks 24th in Ken Pomeroy's adjusted defensive efficiency ratings, a 46-spot improvement from last year—but more on that Friday), and a better Mason Plumlee.