DURHAM, N.C. – Seventh-ranked Duke had just followed a wild overtime win against its fiercest rival by battling through the final minutes of a close game to beat eighth-ranked Florida State when coach Mike Krzyzewski paused on his way off the court.
The Hall of Famer turned back in the direction of the “Cameron Crazies” and motioned for them to make even more noise, seeking even more of a tribute for his young team after Monday's 70-65 win.
“This has been an incredible 48 hours for our team,” Krzyzewski said. “I've got good guys, man. I've got really good kids.”
It was only two days earlier that the Blue Devils (21-3, 11-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) had rallied from 13 down late in regulation and earned an emotionally draining road win at North Carolina, a game that saw them rally from 13 down late in regulation and get buzzer-beating shots to force overtime and later to win.
They returned home to face a team tied with them for second in the ACC, one game back in the loss column of fifth-ranked Louisville. And despite a turnover-heavy performance, the Blue Devils did enough down the stretch — a key rebound here, a defensive stop there — to beat the Seminoles (20-4, 10-3).
“Not many teams would've won tonight after Saturday,” Krzyzewski said. “I’m so damn proud of them, man. I wish you could feel what I feel.”
Tre Jones had 13 points for the Blue Devils, who shot 45% and hit 7 of 17 3-pointers to overcome 21 turnovers. Their defense also gave FSU tough looks and forced Trent Forrest to carry the offensive burden for much of the night for the Seminoles.
Forrest finished with 18 points, nine rebounds and eight steals to lead the Seminoles (20-4, 10-3), who shot just 38% and misfired from both the arc and the foul line.
“You’re going to have games like this,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said, adding: “We don’t always hit on all cylinders. This is part of the journey and part of the process. You learn from it and you move on.”