Durham, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - The sixth-ranked Duke Blue Devils will attempt to build upon their outstanding victory over the weekend on Tuesday night when their homestand at Cameron Indoor Stadium comes to a close with an Atlantic Coast Conference bout with the Virginia Tech Hokies.
Virginia Tech's season has been a struggle from the very start, as it is just 9-17 overall, and at 2-12 in the ACC, it sits alone in last place of the conference standings. The Hokies are currently losers of 12 of their last 13 games, most recently dropping a 71-64 decision at home to NC State on Saturday.
Duke rebounded from a loss at North Carolina last Thursday (74-66) by tackling then-No. 1 Syracuse at home on Saturday, 66-60, for its fifth win its last six contests. The Blue Devils appear out of the running for the ACC regular-season title, as they are 11-4 in the league, three games behind Virginia (14-1) with three games to play, but they are still an outstanding 22-6 overall and have won all 15 games at Cameron Indoor Stadium. The Blue Devils are 15-0 in Durham this season and have won 31 straight games at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
The Blue Devils lead the all-time series with Virginia Tech, 42-8, which includes wins in six straight meetings.
The Hokies never led in their matchup over the weekend, as they fell behind NC State by 10 at the half, and while they brought their deficit to just four in the final minute, it was too little too late. While they shot slightly better from the field (.429) than the Wolfpack (.406), they attempted 22 fewer field goals due largely to the large turnover discrepancy (17-7). Devin Wilson and Jarell Eddie both poured in 14 points, with Wilson adding nine assists to his performance, and Trevor Thompson narrowly missed a double-double with nine points and nine rebounds.
On the season, Virginia Tech's offensive attack has been lackluster to say the least, as it shoots just 41.1 percent from the field for 65.2 ppg, and things have been much worse in ACC play with those numbers shrinking to a meager 37.4 percent and 56.7 ppg in 14 league games. Eddie is the leading scorer with 13.4 ppg, but he's been mostly a product of high volume, as he owns a poor .358 field-goal percentage. With Adam Smith (11.0 ppg) and Ben Emelogu (10.8 ppg) out with injuries, Wilson (9.4 ppg, 4.7 apg) and C.J. Barksdale (8.6 ppg) are the only other consistent scoring options.
The Blue Devils held a two-point lead with 11 seconds to play in their marquee matchup on Saturday when Syracuse was called for a controversial charging foul, and after its head coach Jim Boeheim was ejected following two technical fouls, they put the game away on the other end of the floor by knocking down 3-of-4 at the foul line. They shot 47.9 percent from the field on the evening, much better than Syracuse's 38.7 percent showing, which helped make up for a poor 13-of-25 showing at the stripe. Jabari Parker was the catalyst with 19 points (on 6-of-8 field goal shooting) and 10 rebounds, while Rodney Hood pitched in 13 points to the winning effort.
Duke has unsurprisingly been one of the nation's most well-rounded teams, as it shoots 46.8 percent from the field, including a lofty 40.7 percent from 3- point range, and boasts strong margins in terms of scoring (+13.3), rebounding (+1.3) and turnovers (+3.1). Parker has established himself as one of the country's elite playmakers in his freshman season, shooting 48.5 percent from the field and 38.2 percent from 3-point range for 19.1 ppg, while adding 8.8 rpg and more than a block and a steal per contest for good measure. Hood is an outstanding second option with 16.1 ppg, having knocked down 58 3-pointers at a 43.6 percent clip, while Quinn Cook runs the point with 12.0 ppg and an excellent assist (131) to turnover (47) ratio.