Published: Thu, November 08, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Duke Basketball: Blue Devils put nation on notice by trouncing Wildcats

Duke Basketball: Blue Devils put nation on notice by trouncing Wildcats

Both Barrett and Williamson surpassed Marvin Bagley III's program record for points by a freshman in his debut at 25.

Duke's four freshmen starters scored the Blue Devils' first four field goals, with Jones, Reddish and Williamson hitting 3-pointers and Barrett a shot in the lane as Duke led 11-4. I nearly switched to Kansas, at one point, like most others.

The Cats were led by freshman wing Keldon Johnson with 23 points and Travis with 22. Graduate transfer Reid Travis added 22 for the Wildcats, who had won all nine previous season openers under Calipari.

Duke led 34-13 with 10:37 left in the first half.

The Blue Devils didn't stop with that flurry.

After making it 59-42 at halftime, Duke kept pulling away throughout the second half. That allowed Kentucky to climb back as close as 12 points. Williamson scored 28 points on 11 of 13 shooting, added seven rebounds and produced his own highlight reel, which ESPN was kind enough to compile for the sporting public.

Kentucky: It was an embarrassing performance for the Wildcats, who weren't physical enough against Williamson and couldn't keep up with Barrett.

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That overall display - in a game that the Blue Devils entered as a slight underdog - is sure to be the primary topic amongst college basketball fans at water coolers in offices across the country for days to come.

The Blue Devils, however, may have issues with their depth going forward as they received very little from their non-freshmen and from their reserves until garbage time.

1 Kentucky announced to the world their cruel intentions. Junior forward Jack White did provide nine points and 11 rebounds off the bench. Duke would go on to shoot over 50 percent from the floor. They combined for 83 points on the night, nearly outscoring the Wildcats' entire roster. That Kentucky team did not suffer its first loss of the year until the national championship game.

Jones says he's never seen anything like it anywhere - even at Duke - and, when it's all said and done, he's got everything it takes to jump over those other Blue Devil greats.

Devon Dotson #11 of the Kansas Jayhawks celebrates with Quentin Grimes #5 against the Michigan State Spartans during the State Farm Champions Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on November 6, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

The Blue Devils found themselves in deep foul trouble as six players, including Reddish, Williamson and Bolden, picked up two fouls each in the first half.

Kentucky looks to rebound when it returns to Rupp Arena against Southern Illinois on Friday.

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