PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WNCN) – Yale and Duke meet Saturday in NCAA play in a game that is a rematch of what turned into a tense game in November at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
The teams play again Saturday at approximately 2:40 p.m. The game will be broadcast on CBS North Carolina.
Yale, in that Nov. 25 game in Durham, trailed only 38-36 at the half as senior Brandon Sherrod tortured the Blue Devils down low. Duke stayed with its trademark man-to-man defense.
But two events turned the game.
First, Duke brought 6-foot-9 Brandon Ingram off the bench and went to a 1-3-1 zone trap with Ingram at the top of the trap. It was a rare use of that particular defense for Duke but a change Coach Mike Krzyzewski decided was necessary to hold off Yale.
Second, Sherrod wound up in foul trouble and eventually fouled out.
Duke won, 80-61, in an outcome that was much different than the game appeared.
The game was a coming out party for Ingram, who came off the bench to score 15 points in an effort that foreshadowed his efforts the rest of the season.
And the zone Duke flashed in that game has become an effective weapon for the Blue Devils. Duke, despite its long commitment to man-to-man defense, found that it often needed the press.
Krzyzewski said he expected a high-scoring game.
“They score well, and so do we,” Krzyzewski said. He also called Yale “one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the country.”
Duke guard Grayson Allen downplayed any impact.
“They are a completely different team and we have grown as well,” Allen said. “We have to look at what we have done recently.”
Allen is right, in that both teams have changed. Ingram, for example, has developed dramatically as the season has progressed.
And Yale has changed as well. The Bulldogs won the Ivy League and then scored a stunning first-round knockout of Baylor. And Yale has had to endure a year in which senior guard Jack Montague was expelled. His attorney has said he was wrongly accused of nonconsensual sex.
Friday also marked 36 years since Krzyzewski joined Duke, leaving Army as a young coach to take over an ACC program. Krzyzewski said Friday he was fortunate to have graduated from West Point and then to coach at Duke.
“My mom always said, ‘Be sure you get on the right bus,’” he said.