Mike Krzyzewski and his Duke Blue Devils fell to a 15-point loss at the hands of the Illinois Fighting Illini, which reduced Duke’s record to 2-2 this season. As a result, Coach K has openly shared his thoughts on the season, asking everyone to re-think the practicality of this COVID season.
Coach K said, “I would just like for the safety, the mental and physical health of players and staff to assess where we’re at. We’re just plowing through this. People are saying the next six weeks are going to be the worst. To me, it’s already pretty bad. On the other side of it, there are these vaccines that are coming out. By the end of the month, 20 million vaccine shots will be given. By the end of January or in February, another 100 million. Should we not reassess that? See just what would be best?”
Of course, these quotes look bad after his team lost. In fact, Coach K had said that the NCCA can’t afford to lose this season prior to all of this. But seeing it in practicality can change opinions, which seems to be what happened with Coach.
Yes, his team is doing badly. When your team is doing badly, it is hard to get any traction on comments like this. But with the cramped schedule and the constant rescheduling of games due to positive cases, everyone has seen the negative aspects of playing when COVID is still doing the damage that it is.
College-age kids are being exposed to the virus through these games. While safety precautions are in place, they couldn’t even protect a game between the number one and number two ranked teams in the country. The NCAA season is looking a little over the place, but is that enough reason to cancel it?
It is unlikely that any changes happen because of what Coach K said in August. The NCAA can’t afford to lose another season to COVID, so everyone should strap in for this ride. Hopefully, his Duke Blue Devils start playing better despite the circumstances.