Too little, too late. Again.
The football team got quarterback Thaddeus Lewis back for its matchup against North Carolina Saturday, and he immediately displayed what we’ve been saying while he was down—Duke needs Thad. With Lewis at the helm, the offense marched straight down the field on its first possession and scored a touchdown. During the nearly two complete games Duke was forced to play without him, the Blue Devils only scored one touchdown in garbage time against Clemson’s backup secondary.
But in the end, it wasn’t enough. The Blue Devils surged down the field for a final chance to tie the game trailing 28-20, but like a number of games this season, Duke had a chance, and lost it. People may disagree with this point, but I’ve seen my fair share of close Blue Devil losses over the last three years, and this season’s all had a different kind of feeling.
I understand that saying one close win is better than another close win still leaves you comparing two losses, but it’s still all there. Ted Roof’s close games all seemed lucky, like the other team underestimated Duke, the Blue Devils caught a couple breaks and then they crumbled at the end like the rickety house of cards they were. This season, the Blue Devils scared teams. Northwestern, Wake Forest, North Carolina and even Virginia Tech—they were all pushed to the brink by Duke and escaped. Looking back, you could say, ‘With a few lucky bounces here or there, the Blue Devils could be 6-6, or maybe even 8-4.’ They could be, and, maybe in the next few seasons, they will be. Continue reading