It’s been a successful decade for Duke basketball. The Blue Devils have won two national titles and four ACC Tournament titles since 2010, and they’ve done it while coach Mike Krzyzewski changed the way he assembled a team.
Long the program most emblematic of four-year college players, including greats Christian Laettner, Shane Battier and Grant Hill, who stayed for their full college careers, Coach K embraced college basketball’s trend of one-and-done freshmen, who stopped off in Durham for a year before going to the NBA Draft.
That makes it tougher to choose an All-Decade team for Duke.
We decided to have it both ways and choose two 2010-19 All-Decade squads for the Blue Devils: An All-One-and-Done team and an All-Lifer team.
The first member of the All-Decade One-and-Done team is the biggest no-brainer of them all. 2018-19 super-duper-star Zion Williamson took the country by storm with his power and athleticism, thrilling fans with his high-flying dunks and his sheer size.
Everyone from LeBron to Spike Lee to President Obama made sure to stop by and catch the Zion Williamson experience during his year in Durham.
Williamson’s freshman year was interrupted by a knee injury, suffered when his shoe blew out in the first game against North Carolina. He returned for the ACC Tournament, leading Duke to a title with his MVP performance.
Williamson went on to be the first pick in the NBA Draft, although his debut has been pushed off by more knee troubles. But for a few months in Durham he was as good as advertised.