Ryan Neu Duke '15
NCAA FB SQ
NCAA BB SQ
As Jay Bilas said after the conclusion of Saturday’s Duke-UNC matchup, “Duke looks like a No. 1 seed.” Right you are Mr. Bilas. Sure there have been times when the Blue Devil offense—and particularly the defense have faltered—but you cannot deny them these facts. Win at Wisconsin. Win at Louisville. Win at Virginia. Win at Syracuse. Win at North Carolina. Against the best competition in the most hostile environments this team has come out victorious. Duke is as dangerous as any other team in the nation, and it’s going to be fun to see what sort of show it puts on during the ACC tournament.
in No. 3 Duke takes down No. 19 North Carolina once again
3/7/15, 11:36 PM
C - Henrik Lundqvist
King Henrik is the best goaltender in the NHL. If anyone can stop balls behind the plate its Lundqvist, and he can go all Bernie Williams and rock out some nice tunes for the team after the game
1B - Manuel Neuer
Size and good hands. I’ve seen enough of Neuer’s quick reactions and plays on short-hopped shots to know that he would be able to scoop balls out of the dirt. Plus he’s enormous so errant throws will almost cease to exist.
2B - Chris Paul
Quickness and accuracy on passes make CP3 my call to make Cano-like plays at second.
SS - LeBron James
You could put LBJ anywhere and he would be successful. I’ll put him at shortstop so can essentially be my team’s Derek Jeter.
3B - Marc Gasol
A gut call. I just feel like he could handle the hot corner.
LF - Julian Edelman
A college quarterback turned wide receiver. He can catch and throw people out.
CF - Usain Bolt
He’ll have so much time to settle under a fly ball, it won’t matter if he doesn’t exactly have the greatest hand-eye coordination in the world. All we have to do is teach him how to bunt.
RF - Kevin Love
A cannon for an arm and probably a powerful bat. We can teach him how to catch the ball.
DH - Rob Gronkowski
It’s been said before here. I think this is an obvious call.
SP - Aaron Rodgers
The best quarterback in the NFL would soon become the best ace in the MLB.
CP - Russell Wilson
Calm, cool and collected on the biggest stages, Wilson should have no problem getting the three most important outs of each game.
in SQ What-If: Baseball Team Without Baseball Players
3/1/15, 12:37 PM
This is a big moment in college basketball history as Coach K becomes the first D-I coach to ever win 1,000 games. Soon Jim Boeheim will join him and soon after that Coach K will win 1,000 games as a Duke head coach.
If we’re looking at the game itself, this was an important win for the Blue Devils. Throughout most of the contest, it seemed as if this game would be a repeat of the N.C. State and Miami games in which the guards tore apart the Duke defense and made the Blue Devils look nothing like a top five team in the country.
But Duke was able to come back and beat St. John’s thanks a large amount of poise that you may not have expected from a team with so many freshmen. This team has grown up a lot over the last two weeks and that will be huge down the stretch for the Blue Devils.
in Mike Krzyzewski grabs 1,000th career victory
1/25/15, 5:07 PM
This weekend has shown that even the strongest programs in the country are mortal.
Kentucky needed 2OT to hold off Texas A&M;, Virginia narrowly beat out a strong Notre Dame team, Louisville was upset by North Carolina and now Duke has taken its first loss of the season.
Jahlil Okafor played well, picking up his fourth career double-double but it was not nearly enough to stop the furious shooting of Trevor Lacey and N.C. State. What this game tells me first is that the ACC is very deep this year. Second, Duke—despite being arguably the strongest team in the conference on paper—is just as vulnerable as anyone to be beaten if its opponent plays at a high level.
Duke hosts Miami on Tuesday in an interesting matchup due to the Hurricanes streaky shooting and then gets ready to head to Louisville for a highly anticipated contest.
in N.C. State Upsets No. 2 Duke, Hands Blue Devils First Loss of Season
1/11/15, 5:29 PM
The NFC South and NFC North will have similar match ups next Sunday. In the South, the Falcons and Panthers will play head-to-head to determine which team will reach the postseason and claim the division. In the North, the Lions and Packers will face off at Lambeau to decide the division winner as well, but the difference is that both Detroit and Green Bay will be playing in January regardless of the final of that game.
The Packers are trying to finish off the regular season undefeated at home and would love to put themselves in a position to earn a bye in the first round of the playoffs as well as a chance to claim the home-field advantage. The latter is less likely but still possible and a No. 2 seed is well within reach for both of these teams.
Rodgers turned around after a bad week and showed why he is one of the best of the league, taking control throughout the contest but the biggest sign of improvement for the Packers came on the defensive end. Granted the Buccaneers do not have a potent offense by any means, but Clay Matthews and Co. did what they were supposed to do and completely shut down Tampa Bay offensively. Green Bay has struggled to stop the run throughout the year and held the Bucs to just 16 yards on the ground.
The Packers still look as dangerous as we thought they were when they beat New England back in November and next week’s game will be huge for them as they prepare for the postseason.
in Packers Clinch Playoff Spot in Win Against Buccaneers
12/21/14, 4:30 PM
Louisville continues to solidify its position as the second best team in the ACC and can make a strong argument for being the best when it faces Kentucky in a couple weeks. The Cardinals frontcourt looks absolutely terrifying and will cause enormous problems for every team they face going forward. For anyone to beat Louisville, they will have to hit outside shots but with the way the Cardinals guards are playing perimeter defense, that is a tough task for even the best three-point shooting teams (see Duke).
Indiana looks like it can compete in the Big Ten this season and if the Hoosiers can find consistent outside shooting they will give teams fits. Chances are that the Hoosiers won’t win the conference this year, but they certainly looked poised to return to the NCAA tournament this season.
in No. 4 Louisville Pulls Away Late Against Indiana in Jimmy V Classic
12/10/14, 12:18 AM
After a second consecutive season below .500, the White Sox have gotten aggressive in their offseason moves and grabbed one of the best starting pitchers in the league in Jeff Samardzija and a solid closer in David Robertson.
The Yankees gave Robertson a qualifying offer earlier this offseason, which means they won’t lose Robertson for nothing, and All-Star Dellin Betances will be a good replacement so not giving Robertson all the money he wanted was probably a good move on their part especially if they are gunning for a big-name starter like Lester or Scherzer.
Chicago is much better off with these two players after having the third-worst bullpen in ERA last season and no one in the rotation aside from Chris Sale. They may fall into the same position as the Dodgers with a solid 1-2 punch but no one to step up at 3-5 but for now the White Sox should be optimistic about the signings.
Although, I am not 100 percent sold on Robertson being worth, as he put it, “Papelbon money”—I’m not sure even Papelbon is worth Papelbon money but that’s an aside—but I think considering the circumstances it is still the right move for Chicago.
Update: The Cubs have now joined their cross-town rivals as a team that has gone from bad to potential contender next season. Three big moves stand out thus far for Theo Epstein and Co.: trading for Miguel Montero, signing top pitching free agent Jon Lester and upgrading to manager Joe Maddon. Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer—but mostly Epstein more likely—have been working to build a true contender since they came to Chicago in 2011.
They have gone and drafted great prospects and have the second-best crop of potential stars in the league next to Houston. Kris Bryant, Addison Russell and Jorge Soler all look like they have the ability to hone themselves into top players in the majors, and it was only a question of when the Cubs would start to contend. Would it be 2016, 2017, 2018?
But now that the Cubbies have made a splash and gotten the ace they need, one of the best managers in baseball and a solid backstop, watch out for Chicago in 2015.
in SQ’s MLB Winter Meeting Central
12/9/14, 1:50 AM
Virginia looks just as strong as it did last season despite losing Joe Harris. Tony Bennett’s defensive system is incredibly frustrating for even the most prolific college offenses and even though the offense can and will sputter at times, the defense will make up for it and keep the Cavaliers more than competitive in the immensely-talented ACC.
Miami rode its upset win against the Gators to a No. 15 rankings that may have been a little too high. Florida has stumbled quite a bit to start the season and although going on the road to beat the Gators is never an easy task, it may turn out to mean a bit less than many originally thought. This isn’t a damning loss for the Hurricanes—Green Bay is a very talented team—but it certainly has grounded them and will have to serve as a good lesson moving forward for a team looking to return to the NCAA tournament after missing out last season.
in No. 7 Virginia Cruises Past VCU; No. 15 Miami Upset at Home
12/6/14, 5:45 PM
Don’t you just love it when the opening game of the week is a unanimous pick gone wrong?
in The SQ Insiders Picks: Week 12
11/21/14, 10:16 AM
I’d like to hear why Wisconsin jumped up five spots to No. 20 in the CFP rankings but Duke only moved up one spot to No. 21. The Badgers have two losses, one to a three-loss LSU team and the other to 3-6 Northwestern. The argument against Duke—and it’s a legitimate one—is that despite being 8-1, it hasn’t beaten anyone substantial (the best win would be against No. 22 Georgia Tech). But Wisconsin hasn’t beaten anyone good either (teams they have beaten combine for a 31-34 and none of them are or have been ranked). They’re also coming off an unimpressive 18-point win over 3-7 Purdue so its not like last week’s win could have given them some momentum. It just doesn’t add up to me.
in Oregon And TCU Headline Major Shakeup In New College Football Playoff Rankings
11/11/14, 10:42 PM
The 2018 SQ NFL Mock Draft
by 20 April 2018, 11:20 AM
With so many different possibilities to this draft, who should your team take with their first overall pick?
The Top Five Teams Of 2018-19
by 10 April 2018, 10:00 AM
The title game was last Monday, but it’s never too early to talk about next season.
Final Four Preview: Michigan vs. Loyola-Chicago
by 29 March 2018, 12:45 PM
Can the Ramblers, returning to the Final Four for the first time since they won the national title in 1963, take down the Wolverines?
Gonzaga Can (And Will) Return To The Title Game
by 22 March 2018, 6:13 PM
This Gonzaga team isn’t as naturally dominant as last season’s, but Mark Few has a loaded team on his hands that’s ready to compete for a title.
Potential Double-Digit Seed Bracket Sleepers
by 14 March 2018, 7:21 PM
Every season, some double-digit seeds have legitimate chances of reaching the tournament’s second weekend. Who is it this year?
Duke’s Dramatic Defensive Shift Dictates Its Title Dreams
by 3 March 2018, 2:00 PM
Duke was one of the worst defensive teams in the country. Then it started playing zone.
Which Bubble Teams Will Reach The NCAA Tournament?
by 24 February 2018, 10:00 AM
They more than likely won’t win a national title, but these programs are playing for their tournament lives. Who will get invited to the Big Dance?
Villanova, UVA, And Purdue Are The Clear Title Favorites
by 10 February 2018, 10:30 AM
Villanova, Virginia, and Purdue have separated themselves from the pack so far this season.
National Title Contenders Outside The Top 10