Duke legends Jon Scheyer, Chris Collins getting H.S. numbers retired

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Northwestern head men’s basketball coach Chris Collins will receive the extreme honor of having his high school jersey No. 20 retired by Glenbrook North High School this Friday evening.

Collins (class of 1992) is being honored alongside fellow GBN grad and current Duke assistant coach Jon Scheyer (class of 2006) who is also having his No. 23 jersey retired, the first jerseys to be so honored by Glenbrook North.

Friday’s ceremony is set to take place at 7 p.m., prior to the 7:30 p.m. contest between Glenbrook North and Niles North.

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Here’s our story on the pair of Duke legends that we ran on Big Ten/ACC Challenge night 3 below:

Tonight, both Jon Scheyer and Chris Collins will be manning the baseline in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. They will do it on the two B1G campuses that are the closest to each other geographically, of any pair in the entire league. #4 Duke tips off at #2 Wisconsin about 20 minutes after Northwestern hosts Georgia Tech tonight.

Northbrook, IL native Jon Scheyer is one of the most polarizing players in college basketball history. One of the the star players on Duke’s 2010 National Championship team, he’s now an assistant on Coach Mike Krzyzewski’s bench at Duke. He could follow in the footsteps of Northwestern Coach Chris Colllins by becoming a lead assistant, and then, down the line taking a head job at a Division I program.

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Scheyer has followed in Collins’ footsteps already. Collins was the first player from Glenbrook North ever to play in college.

Chris Collins was a McDonald’s All-American, state of Illinois “Mr. Basketball” award winner who was recruited by Illinois but chose Duke instead. Jon Scheyer, also a Glenbrook North grad, also did “all of the above.” Collins himself was instrumental in getting Scheyer to go to Durham instead of Champaign-Urbana.

Two “blue-chip” players from upscale backgrounds in with posh suburban up-bringing, Collins and Scheyer have seen similar development in the collegiate and professional ranks.

Jon Scheyer

Both were huge stars under Coach K. at Duke. Neither was able to catch on in the NBA. But today both are branches in the same coaching tree. They even look a little bit alike.

Collins talked about his close ties with Jon Scheyer at Big Ten Media Day.

“I’m really proud of him, Jon’s like a brother to me,” Collins said.

“We’ve shared a lot together, I’ve coached Jon, but I’ve known Jon since before I coached him.”

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“Now, seeing him as a full time assistant on that Duke bench, as a really young guy , he’s got a great opportunity to learn like I did from as good of a coach as there is in the game; at a place that he loves, where he went,” Collins continued in a conversation held at the Chicago college basketball luncheon.

“He’s a rising star in the business, no doubt. Now it’s just a matter of him getting the experience he needs. He’ll be a Head Coach one day.”

“And I’ll look forward to monitoring his progress.”

When it comes time for Coach K. to retire finally, and chooses his successor, (make no mistake, Mike will choose his successor, not Duke) it will be interesting to see who he picks from his crop of former assistants. With so many members of the Coach K. tree holding down D-1 jobs right now, it’s anybody’s ballgame right now.

Paul M. Banks owns, operates and writes The Sports Bank.net ,which is partners with Fox Sports. Read his feature stories in the Chicago Tribune RedEye edition. Listen to him on KOZN 1620 The Zone. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks). His work has been featured in hundreds of media outlets including The Washington Post and ESPN 2

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