David Cutcliffe: "Hopefully, We’re Disciplined Enough to Play Some Football.”


Duke players begin arriving back to campus on Sunday, making the Blue Devils one of the last Power Five teams to return, close to a month after the first teams began showing up.

“I have mixed emotions about the late coming back,” coach David Cutcliffe said.

One major drawback is that there’s little margin for error. Some teams, like Clemson and LSU, had a large number of positive tests, which caused delays to voluntary workouts. That’s easier to withstand and still get the necessary work in if it occurs in June rather than July.

“Obviously, if our guys don’t do great job (of avoiding infection), we’re starting to move in toward camp,” Cutcliffe said. “It can affect you a great deal if others can put it behind them.”

Despite that, the later return allows Duke to see what worked and what didn’t for other teams.

“I still believe waiting until after the Fourth of July was key for us,” he said. “I think sitting back and letting these guys see what’s occurred gives us better chance for them to understand the seriousness of this.”

Despite the setbacks seen across the country, Cutcliffe is still hopeful that football will be played.

“I am very optimistic, still,” he said. “I was extremely optimistic maybe six weeks ago, to a month, but one, we all thought hot weather would help us, and that has not been the case. Two, as we have reopened, seeing how difficult it is for the general population to live strictly into mitigation. It makes you a little less optimistic. I think that there’s a lot of things on the table. One week at a time as to how you do this. I believe we can do this. I don’t think our world is going to have to stop, but I think our world needs to become more disciplined. I do. Hopefully, we’re disciplined enough to play some football.”