Caulton Tudor

Allen's potential still there for Duke to tap

Posted April 20

— While the 2017-18 ACC basketball personnel picture will stay cloudy for at least the next few weeks, two important puzzle pieces fell into place with recent decisions to return by Notre Dame’s Bonzie Colson and Duke’s Grayson Allen.

Both will be 6-foot-5 seniors and among the most experienced big-game players in the nation.

One other thing is relatively certain about the two, as well. When the preseason all-ACC predictions are made by the media on Oct. 25 in Charlotte, the 225-pound Colson is far more likely than Allen to go off as the favorite to be league player of the year.

Allen started 2016-17 with that distinction by a landslide margin. He received 70 of the 91 votes but that was about the last thing that went his way for a while.

Between injuries, suspensions for tripping opponents and having to play a lot more at the offensive point than anyone could have imagined, the 190-pound Allen wound up starting only 25 games.

After averaging 21.1 points in 35 starts as a sophomore, his scoring average dropped to 14.5. His field-goal percentage slid from 46.1 as a soph to 39.5 and his 3-point percentage went from 41.7 to 36.5. Although Allen occasionally was very effective running the offense, it was obvious the new role affected his production.

Overall, the Blue Devils improved, however. With freshman Derryck Thornton (now at Southern Cal) handling the point some in 2015-16, the team finished 25-11 overall (11-7 ACC) and lost in the tournament quarterfinals to Notre Dame.

Frank Jackson, another freshman, shared the point with Allen last season and struggled a good deal, but the Devils improved down the stretch to finish 28-9 (11-7) and won the league championship by beating Notre Dame.

But it was obvious throughout the season that Duke was at its best when Allen was at or near his best. As much as a villain as he has become to opposing fans, he’s still capable of providing extraordinary leadership and game impact.

With less preseason pressure and an additional year of maturity, it’s completely within Allen’s reach to turn into the league’s most dominant offensive player and the anchor of another national title contender for Mike Krzyzewski.

Losing Luke Kennard and Jayson Tatum to the NBA clearly hurt the Blue Devils and they’ll miss Amile Jefferson and Matt Jones.

It’s not even certain which players will join Allen and Jackson in the primary rotation. Freshman Wendell Carter (6-10) and Gary Trent (6-5) will play a lot, and it’s safe to assume rising soph Marques Bolden will be better. Highly rated unsigned prospects Kevin Knox (6-8) and Mohamed Bamba (6-11) still have Duke on their lists.

Allen arrived basically as a bystander in the 2014-15 freshman class with Jahlil Okafor, Justise Winslow and Tyus Jones. After winning the national championship, all three turned pro. Only Allen remains and the final chapter of his college career will be compelling to watch.

1 Comment

Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • Larry Price Apr 20, 11:02 a.m.
    user avatar

    The undersize swingmen like these two and short point guards (joel berry (unc) and frank mason (kansas)) with NBA ability can really be great for a program. You usually get to keep them for all 4 years and have the opportunity to develop a solid program around them.

  • College World Series: Teams TBD

    Tonight at 7:00 on 99.9 The Fan

  • College World Series: Teams TBD

    Tomorrow at 7:45 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Minor League Baseball
International League
Rochester 2:35 PT3:35 MT4:35 CT5:35 ET3:35 MT5:35 ET10:35 GMT6:35 北京时间
Buffalo 
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 3:35 PT4:35 MT5:35 CT6:35 ET4:35 MT6:35 ET11:35 GMT7:35 北京时间
Syracuse 
Gwinnett 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET5:05 MT7:05 ET12:05 GMT8:05 北京时间
Toledo 
Pawtucket 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET5:05 MT7:05 ET12:05 GMT8:05 北京时间
Lehigh Valley 
Durham 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET5:05 MT7:05 ET12:05 GMT8:05 北京时间
Indianapolis 
Columbus 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET5:05 MT7:05 ET12:05 GMT8:05 北京时间
Charlotte 
Louisville 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET5:05 MT7:05 ET12:05 GMT8:05 北京时间
Norfolk 
Rochester 5:05 PT6:05 MT7:05 CT8:05 ET6:05 MT8:05 ET1:05 GMT9:05 北京时间
Buffalo 
Travelers Champ (PGA)
PosNameScoreThru
1J. Spieth - z-12F
2D. Berger - y-12F
3tC. Hoffman-10F
3tD. Lee-10F
5tP. Reed-9F
5tP. Casey-9F
5tB. Weekley-9F
8tK. Streelman-8F
8tT. Merritt-8F
8tW. Simpson-8F
View Full Leaderboard
z = Won in Playoff   y = Lost in Playoff
 
NW Ark Champ (LPGA)
PosNameScoreThru
1S. Ryu-18F
2tM. Jutanugarn-16F
2tA. Yang-16F
4tS. Lewis-13F
4tM. Wie-13F
6tM. Lee-12F
6tI. Park-12F
8tM. Alex-11F
8tN. Broch Larsen-11F
10tC. Choi-10F
View Full Leaderboard
 
ATP Scoreboard
Monday, Jun. 26
AEGON International (ATP/WTA)
First Round
(8) D. Schwartzma1     
J. Donaldson0     
D. Young0     
K. Edmund1     
T. Bellucci 
K. Anderson 
J. Vesely 
V. Pospisil 
N. Mahut 
R. Haase 
N. Gombos 
B. Tomic 
C. Norrie 
H. Zeballos 
 
Antalya Open (ATP)
 
WTA Scoreboard
Monday, Jun. 26
AEGON International (ATP/WTA)
First Round
C. McHale0     
Y. Duan1     
N. Broady1     
K. Pliskova1     
S. Cirstea1     
K. Siniakova1     
S. Hsieh 
V. Cepede Roy 
N. Osaka 
R. Ozaki 
E. Bouchard 
B. Strycova 
J. Goerges 
C. Bellis 
S. Zhang 
V. Lepchenko 
F. Schiavone 
S. Peng 
Second Round
(3) K. Pliskova 
A. Riske 
(4) D. Cibulkova 
H. Watson 
(14) A. Pavlyuchen 
E. Mertens 
(16) D. Gavrilova 
L. Arruabarre 
(10) J. Ostapenko 
C. Suarez Nav