Florida State @ Duke Pre Game Scouting Report.
This is a very interesting matchup for many reasons. Both teams come in playing very good basketball. Duke is tops in the ACC with a record of 16-2 (4-0 in conference) and winners of 9 out of their last 10. Florida State is playing very good basketball of their own coming in with a record of 12-6 (3-1 in conference) one of those wins coming on January 14 vs Norh Carolina with a 90-57 thumbing of the Tarheels in Tallahassee.
This will be a big test for the Blue Devils. This game will not be a cake walk by any stretch of the imagination. The Seminoles have a very good blend of talent on their roster. They have many weapons that can hurt you from the perimeter and the paing. I think it will be a very fair matchup for sure.
Deividas Dulkys (Florida State)
Michael Snaer(Florida State)
DUKE BLUE DEVILS
Duke is a perimeter oriented team relying very much on the penetration of their guards. The biggest resource of their offense is forcing two defenders to guard the ball handler and the ball handler pass to the open player. They make multiple passes on a lot of their possessions which turns into a lot of open shots. Austin Rivers (14.2 PTS 2.6REB) is one of their featured weapons of this offense. His ability to make shots off spot ups as well as penetrate and create makes him one of the players that Leonard Hamilton needs to focus on keeping out of the lane. Rivers has had his ups and downs but he’s settling in as one of Duke’s most consistent offensive players. Andre Dawkins(10.2 Pts) is red hot in the last two games he’s averaging 22.5 pts including shooting 12-21 from the 3 point line. Again the penetrate and kicks from Duke’s offense will be the key for spot up players and cutters on this team. Duke will run a lot of screening action as well as plenty of screen and roll sets to roll their bigs ion the lane. Mason Plumlee (11.5 PTS 9.4 REB) will be a big factor in this game with his energy and ability to defend and protect the paint on the defensive end. Plumlee doesn’t factor in to a huge scorng threat on the block, but with his ability to run the floor, roll hard on screen and roll, and score on the offensive glass he will serve as a big option in this game.
Obviously Duke has a balanced attack of 4 starters averaging in double figures as well as Dawkins coming off the bench they may have more weapons than Florida State can handle. Look for them to look to push the ball up the floor and look for early offense against Florida State. Their motion offense and ability to stretch the floor with shooters and drivers will be a lot to handle for FSU tomorrow.
Here is a look at the Duke Offense:
- Duke Holding opponents to 43.6% shooting for the season including 31.8% From the 3 Point Line
- Duke Holding Opponents to 68.8 Points Per Game
- Duke has won 64 straight home games to unranked opponents ironically the last unranked opponent that they lost to was Florida State back in Feb 2007
FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES
FSU will be a thorn in Duke’s side for many reasons. They have multiple three point threats including the team’s leading scorer Michael Snaer (13.5 PPG 3.7 REB 1.7 A 28 3PT). Snaer can score from spot ups, coming off screens, and drives on long closeouts. His perimeter shooting will give Duke defenders something to worry about for sure. He has good size and decent athletic ability. Another wing player that will give something to Duke to worry about is Senior Deividas Dulkys (7.6 2.0 REB 1.2 AST 28 3PT). Dulkys is fresh of dropping 32 points including 8-10 from three point land against North Carolina last weekend. The biggest asset to this Florida State team is their ability to pass the ball. They do a great job at penetrating stretching out defenders and finding open shooters/cutters in their offense. Two big pieces to their chances tomorrow will be the play of their two big men Bernard James (10.4 8.9 REB 2.3 BLK) and Xavier Gibson (7.3 PTS 5.2 REB 1.5 BLK). Florida State does hold the edge in overall size in their frontcourt to protect the paint against Duke’s slashers and perimeter players. Both of their big men are serviceable on the block and have great size and length. They also average almost 4 blocks between them.
Here is a look at The Florida State Offense:
- FSU Holding opponents to 36.7% from the field including 26.6% from the Three Point Line
- FSU Out rebounding opponents by a margin of 5.2 per game
- FSU Holding opponents to 61.9 points per game
HOW CAN FLORIDA STATE BEAT DUKE
If I was preparing FSU against Duke on the defensive side of the ball I would keep the ball out of the middle of the floor. Force Cook and Rivers to the baseline on all drives and bring my big men over to help and force them to the short corner. I would force them to beat me by shooting contested shots . By keeping the ball out of the middle of the floor and forcing it to the baseline you take away a lot of the dribble kick offense by their guards. They have to defend the 3 point line. Dawkins and Rivers will live on that thing so push their wings to baseline and close out at the 3 point line. I would force them enter the ball to the Plumlees on the block as well and try to force them to take tough contested jumpers in the paint, this will take one of their offensive rebounders out of the play which will enable them to win the rebounding battle. FSU’s big men will have help off their men on all screens to keep Dukes wings from getting open looks on pin downs.
On the offensive side I would raise my bigs and roll them any chance I could, force Duke’s weakside defenders to rotate off their men to stop the roll and open up shooters. If Duke is slow on the rotation you have a lot of action and cutters in the paint and at the rim. You wont beat Duke at their home court by just jacking up three point shots. You have to continue to move the ball and get good shots. Their big men are the key to winning this game on both ends of the floor. You have They have Gibson,James, as well as 7’0 Jon Kreft to protect the paint and play with energy. If they play with little energy and just plot themselves in the paint FSU has no chance. To have a chance to control this game they need to move the ball, get good looks, and have their bigs set good screens and roll to the paint. The more times they can move the ball from one side to another and get uncontested looks from ball reversal, FSU could have a chance to win this game.
As winnable as this game is for Florida State and the momentum they are showing I think Duke will win this game. I worry about FSU’s point guard play and breaking down Duke’s defense to get their team great looks for 40 minutes. I think FSU has very good guards, but I think they will only be able to contend for so long. In my opinion with their shooting ability they will probably rely on that shot way too much and could win them the game with it or allow Duke to beat them in transition.
Duke is such a tough team to beat at their place. Their guard play is good as they have two guards that can handle the ball and get them into offense. Their discipline on offense is very good and their big men are active. I think this game will be close until the last three minutes. I think Florida State will have a chance, but they will need to attack the paint and get Duke’s big men in foul trouble early. All in all this will be a very entertaining game