Duke Basketball Is No Stranger To Epic Comebacks


Looking exhausted and beaten while trailing Louisville by 23 points, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski told his players they would win the game.

If you add that performance to what the Blue Devils have already done this season, they have to be considered the front-runners to win the national championship, despite Tennessee actually being the No. 1 team for the last month.

But that changed when, according to Zion Williamson, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski told his team, "I don't coach losers" and continued to tell this young team that they would, in fact, win the game.

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Lamar Stevens scored 15 of his 26 points in the first half and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead Penn State to an upset No. 6 MI. It was the Blue Devils only bench point in the game. Duke scored just 10 points during the first 12 minutes of the second half, which allowed Louisville to jump out to a 23-point lead.

UP NEXT: Duke hosts North Carolina State on Saturday in the lone meeting between the Tobacco Road schools.

For some more historical context, this comeback effort from Duke was the largest second half deficit overcome by a team with less than 10 minutes to go in NCAA basketball history (hat tip to the NCAA for the historical data) without overtime.

Penn State pulled away in the first half as its star heated up and MI played the second without its coach. The deficit rapidly shrank, and Reddish - much as he did at Florida State last month - hit the night's biggest 3-point shot.

Meanwhile, the Nittany Lions built a 13-point halftime advantage and led by as many as 12 with 1:27 to play.

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After making 2 of 17 shots to open the second half, Duke (22-2, 10-1 ACC) got hot to make 9 of 13 and shut down the Cardinals over the final 9:54.

Kerwin Roach led Texas (14-11, 6-6) with 17 points, and Courtney Ramey added 10.

Reddish then came up huge yet again, drilling a stone cold trey to tie things at 69 apiece with less than 90 seconds to play.

Louisville didn't score on its first six possessions but ended up with a 5-2 lead five minutes into the game.

For more than 30 minutes of game time, Louisville pitched the flawless game.

Cam Reddish converted on a pair of free throws with 14 seconds remaining to earn the Blue Devils their 10th ACC win and 22nd overall win.

Williamson's rebound finished yet another impressive night for the freshman.

Although Louisville has a few playmakers and an exceptionally talented forward of their own in Jordan Nwora, I don't believe they'll have the firepower to get the job done.