DURHAM -- Sidney Lowe called timeouts.
He protested to the referees as the fouls against N.C. State piled up in the first half.
Before the game, Lowe suspended freshman forward C.J. Leslie for violating team rules.
Nothing the N.C. State coach did slowed No. 5-ranked Duke's momentum in a 76-52 blowout on Saturday night in front of a charged-up crowd at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
The seats on the visiting bench at Cameron haven't been that uncomfortable for a visiting coach since North Carolina's Roy Williams squirmed through an 82-50 loss there in the last game of the 2009-10 regular season.
"I'm not going to say it's rock bottom," Lowe said. "There's still a lot to play for and I think our kids showed that in the second half."
N.C. State (12-11, 2-7 ACC) trailed by 30 with two minutes remaining in the first half and 53-24 at halftime. The Wolfpack had more turnovers (12) than field goals (11) in a first half dominated by Duke senior guard Nolan Smith.
He scored 18 of his 20 points and handed out six of his seven assists before halftime. There were plenty of other standouts for Duke (21-2, 8-1), which shot 64.5 percent from the field in the first half against a defense that provided little resistance.
"We played the way we wanted to play," Smith said. "We played defense, played together and were hitting shots. That's nearly a perfect first half that we played."
Sophomore center Mason Plumlee scored 16 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, hurting the Wolfpack on the boards and by running the floor for fast-break dunks. Senior forward Kyle Singler added 14 points, and sophomore Seth Curry scored 13 off the bench.
But it all came more easily than it usually does for Duke - or any team - against an ACC opponent. N.C. State senior center and leading scorer Tracy Smith, who is suffering from a sore knee, was held in 20 minutes to four points, 11 below his average.
Freshman point guard Ryan Harrow returned for N.C. State to a reserve role after missing two games with a virus, but didn't score in 15 minutes as he appeared to lack his normal energy.
"In an ACC game, to be up like that isn't going to happen hardly at all," said Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski.
Krzyzewski had raved about Leslie after the teams' last meeting - a 92-78 Blue Devil win Jan. 19 in Raleigh - saying "he's got pro athletic ability and is a monster on the boards." But Duke didn't have to face him a second time, and N.C. State - out-rebounded 45-36 - missed him on the boards.
On Wednesday night, rival North Carolina will visit Cameron, with first place in the ACC possibly on the line.
N.C. State is supposed to be a rival of the Blue Devils, too, but it didn't look like one Saturday night.