Feb. 25, 2003
ATLANTA – Georgia Tech will be looking to snap its longest ACC losing skid on Wednesday night against 6th ranked Duke at Alexander Coliseum. The Blue Devils have won the last 13 straight against the Jackets, marking Tech’s longest drought against any ACC school.
In fact, Tech has beaten every other ACC school at least three times since their last win over Mike Krzyzewski’s club.
SHOOTING WILL BE THE KEY
During their recent three-game losing streak, Coach Hewitt’s club has hit just 37.9% of their field goals, and only 31.6% of their three-point attempts. Tech has also struggled in scoring, averaging just 62.7 points per game over the last three. That’s a drop of almost 13 points from their season average.
Opponents have also had some success shooting from the floor, combining to average 47.2%.
Tech also has let the last three opponents take a halftime advantage of over 10 points in each of the three games.
THE UNPREDICTABLE SCHEDULE OF FEBRUARY
The off week in the ACC schedule gave the Jackets a chance to get their legs back. Prior to the break, Tech had played four games in 11 days, and five in the last 15-day stretch. After Wednesday, Tech will have played just three in the last 11-days.
The final four games of the regular season are an even split for Tech of two home and two on the road. Duke has three of its last four on the road starting with Tech. The Blue Devils will play at St. John’s this weekend, before hosting FSU, then visiting Carolina on the last day of the regular season.
A LOOK BACK TO THE FIRST MEETING
The Blue Devils won the first game this season, 91-71, on January 25, at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Duke used a six-point run to close the first half and a 5-0 run to start the second, to open up a working margin that was never threatened. B.J. Elder led the Jackets with 22 points, but Duke rookie Shelden Williams posted 18 points and 13 rebounds. Jacket rookie Chris Bosh was held to a season-low 5 points and 4 rebounds in only 22 minutes because of foul trouble.
Since Mike Krzyzewski arrived at Duke, the Blue Devils have always seemed to have a link to the veteran head coach and his hometown. Chicago has been a common stop for Duke since Krzyzewski brought Welden Williams to campus in his early days. That trend has continued with current rookie Sean Dockery.
Now the Jackets have gotten into the “Windy City” for the first time with the transfer of Arizona’s Will Bynum.
Both former high school stars will start battling in the ACC next year when Bynum’s transfer period is over. Dockery was one of the focal points on the Fox Sports Net show “Preps”, two years ago. One of the half-hour episodes of the series featured Will Bynum as well.
BLUE DEVILS TO WATCH
#30 Dahntay Jones (6;6, Sr.): The owner of the ACC’s best dunk this season (over Virginia’s Nick Vander Laan) complete with push-up’s, Jones is having the kind of All-ACC season that some expected. The Rutgers transfer had 21 points in the first meeting, but is averaging 16.3 against the Jackets in the last three meetings.
#23 Shelden Williams (6’9, Frosh.): One of the best battles of young big men will continue on Wednesday night as Williams and Tech’s Chris Bosh meet again. This will be the third time in the last year they have squared off. They first met in St. Louis last year as prep stars in the KMOX Shootout. Williams fouled out against NC State last Saturday after posting just 6 points and 4 rebounds in his third straight start.
#5 Daniel Ewing (6’3, Soph.): The Texas guard has posted double-figures in three of his last four games, including 18 points against the Wolfpack. He is Duke’s third leading scorer at over 11 points per game, and has come off the bench in the last five games.