Yes, No. 4 Duke shot poorly from behind the 3-point line on Friday night.
But the Blue Devils rarely missed on shots inside the arc and that, along with their pressure defense, made for a lopsided win against Colorado State.
Duke racked up 12 steals, contributing to Colorado State’s 18 turnovers, in an 89-55 nonconference victory at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Duke shot 53.6 percent overall (37 of 69) despite making only 4 of 22 3-pointers (18.2 percent). The Blue Devils made 33 of 47 2-point shots (70 percent), including 12 layups and five dunks.
Freshman Cassius Stanley led Duke (2-0) with 19 points while sophomore guard Tre Jones scored 15. Alex O’Connell (14 points) and freshmen Vernon Carey (11) and Wendell Moore (10) joined them scoring in double figures for the Blue Devils.
Colorado State (1-1) trailed 32-26 with 2:28 left in the first half before Duke ran off 10 consecutive points to close the half and lead 42-26 at intermission.
Duke’s defense sped up the game’s pace so much it made it tough for the Rams to shoot straight even when they maintained possession of the ball. Colorado State shot 32.7 percent (18 of 55) overall while making only 5 of 21 3-pointers (23.8 percent).
Vernon Carey and Matthew Hurt, Duke’s top two freshmen in terms of their recruiting rankings, found themselves on the bench to start the second half. They both started Friday night’s game, just as they did Tuesday night against Kansas. But against Colorado State, Hurt produced only two points (on three shots) with one rebound over 10:49 of the first half. Carey had four points and one rebound with two fouls while playing 9:04 of the first half. Jack White and Javin DeLaurier, two of Duke’s four team captains, replaced them to start the second half.
White, a senior 6-7 forward, fell to the court after colliding hard with DeLaurier as they chased a loose ball with 6:55 to play in the first half. White was on the court for a few minutes receiving medical attention from Duke’s training staff. He groggily walked to the bench but quickly rallied. After missing 3 minutes, 10 seconds of play, he returned and scored in the lane.
Making sense of the numbers
1: Stars of an all-time great sitcom in attendance at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Friday night. Jerry Seinfeld, whose daughter, Sascha, is a Duke freshman, sat two rows from the court under the basket nearest Duke’s bench.
5: Fouls Duke freshman center Vernon Carey, Jr., committed in just 15 minutes of play against Colorado State.
8: Colorado State turnovers in the first half. The Rams matched that over the first nine minutes of the second half as Duke pushed its lead from 42-26 to 32 points at 67-35.