Once again, the Duke Blue Devils figure to not be a factor in what should be a wide open ACC. Unlike their rivalry brethren North Carolina, Duke seems unable to make themselves relevant, and at least respectable, in college football to go along with their elite status in college basketball. On this end of Tobacco Road, there hasn’t been a bowl since ’94 and a league co-championship since ’89.
Don’t expect either of those things to change this season.
2011 was: pretty bad, ending with a 7 game losing streak that included a 14-49 pasting at the hands of a very mediocre Miami team. There was a three game win streak early on, but their victims: Boston College, Tulane and FIU don’t impress. Maybe Coach K. should have let Austin Rivers play defensive back and Miles Plumlee play tight end? Couldn’t have hurt.
2012 will go smoothly if: the school begins to really start treating this sport seriously, cuz they’re not exactly doing that now. They’ll need to improve their defense across the board (9oth in scoring, 85th vs. the run, 92nd overall, 84th vs. the pass). Other than that though, everything’s fine! They couldn’t run (115th) or score (93rd) either. So if the rest of the team could resemble the passing offense, you could have something.
They have 8 returning starters on defense, and 7 on offense, so I guess that’s good news, sort of? Not really, since the same group was terrible last year.
2012 will be rough if: it resembles last year in any way shape or form; which it very well might.
BMOCs: WR Conner Vernon, among the best in the ACC. And not much else. QB Sean Renfree isn’t terrible. The defense is.
Bottom Line: Too many issues with the young OL and running game to help the offense carry this team. And there just isn’t any legit personnel on defense to make bowl contention possible.
All the 77s
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter Football.com, Yardbarker, MSN and Fox Sports
A Fulbright scholar and MBA, Banks has appeared on live radio all over the world; and he’s a member of the Football Writers Association of America, U.S. Basketball Writers Association, and Society of Professional Journalists. The President of the United States follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB) You should too
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