• Mike Krzyzewski upbeat on Blue Devils’ prospects for 2016-17

    Posted: May 23rd, 2016

    Mike Krzyzewski isn’t one for hyperbole, but even the Duke coach can’t help but look at the roster he has for the 2016-17 season and be excited.

    “We have the right ingredients to be very good,” he said in a phone interview with ESPN.com. “And that’s what we’re going to try and do — be very good.”

    The Blue Devils will bring a six-man class to campus that is ranked either No. 1 or No. 1A to Kentucky’s incoming freshmen and includes three top-10 players (Harry Giles, Jayson Tatum and Frank Jackson) and just last week added big man Marques Bolden.

    But it’s the combination of youth and experience that has Krzyzewski most excited. Grayson Allen and Luke Kennard, both starters a year ago, and sixth man Matt Jones return, as does Amile Jefferson, who played in only nine games before eventually being redshirted with a foot injury.

    “I’m more excited because we have such good upperclassmen to teach the younger guys,” Krzyzewski said. “Upperclass leadership with such a young group is a gift.”

    With Jefferson’s injury a year ago, as well as Rasheed Sulaimon’s exodus, the Blue Devils often were hamstrung by a depleted roster, playing essentially five guys down the stretch and through the NCAA tournament.

    But with such a big class — one of the largest Krzyzewski can remember bringing in — that no longer will be a problem.

    Outsiders might think that balancing egos and managing minutes could be. Krzyzewski isn’t worried.

    “We not only have really good guys, we have really secure guys,” he said. “They’re in it for one thing and that’s us winning games. They’ve already won. Most of them have won a national championship. They’ve won 60 games for us. They get us.”

    Duke lost to Oregon 82-68 in a West Regional semifinal game March 24.



You can possess countless good qualities as an individual, but if you don”t have the courage to proceed, you may never see those qualities come into fruition. It takes courage to put what you believe to be best of you on the line, to test it, and to see how far it takes you. Courage means daring to do what you imagine.

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Take care not to allow one aspect of your life to so consume you that you neglect the others. Balance can put things in perspective, can bring you joy even when you are down, and can allow you to be at your best in all aspects of your life.

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No matter how successful you believe yourself to be, you can never feel as if you’ve reached the absolute pinnacle. There are always new and wonderful challenges out there, and part of maintaining success is knowing when you need to accept them.

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When you care about someone or something, you show genuine concern for that person or thing, in good times or bad. When you care about one another and about your purpose, you are compelled to put your feelings into action. Care creates an atmosphere that breeds success and gives you the confidence to try again.

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Collective Responsibility

We win and we lose together. Handling the responsibility for wins and losses together removes the burden from one individual’s shoulders and distributes it among each member of the team. That atmosphere is conducive to high-level performance and places you and your team in the position to be bold and unafraid, and if you should lose, you are not alone.

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Belief can mean the difference between a fear of failure and the courage to try. On a team or in a family, belief makes each individual stronger and also fortifies the group as a whole. The basis of belief is in individual relationships.

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Adversity can teach you more about yourself than any success, and overcoming an obstacle can sometimes feel even better than achieving an easy victory. Through adversity, you can discover things about your endurance, your ability to turn a negative into a positive, and your personal strength of heart.

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