Duke’s season unraveled in a rush on Thursday when a constructive COVID-19 check pressured the Blue Devils out of the ACC Event, prompting athletic director Kevin White to declare the group’s season was over. Nevertheless it’s doable speak of Duke’s demise was untimely.
ESPN on Saturday reported that Duke may play in subsequent week’s NCAA Event if chosen as an at-large group or as an alternate, opposite to what White stated Thursday. Duke was not in Jerry Palm’s projected bracket on the time it withdrew from the ACC Event, and it possible wanted to win out, however it was approaching an fascinating bubble resume with consecutive postseason wins over Boston School and Louisville.
Even when Duke will not be one of many 68 groups within the subject, this 12 months, not like others, may present a backdoor for this system to sneak in. Due to considerations associated to COVID, the choice committee this season will identify 4 alternative groups — which might in essence be the 69th, seventieth, 71st and 72nd groups — that will slot in to the bracket ought to one of many different 68 groups be pressured to withdraw from the sector.
So whereas Duke could in the end be disregarded of the preliminary subject, being named an alternate would no less than depart the chance open of inclusion if a group has to withdraw from the sector in the course of the 48-hour window during which groups could also be changed. Because it stands now, nevertheless, Duke’s streak of 24 consecutive NCAA Event appearances seems to be coming to an finish.