Hoops Action; GA Southern at Duke

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Duke's youth movement got off to a good start.

With three freshmen all having a hand in an easy season-opening win, No. 12 Duke meets Georgia Southern for the first time in the Durham regional of the CBE Classic at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Monday night.

Oddsmakers have made Duke -18.5 point spread favorites (College Basketball Odds) for tonights game, the over/under has been set at 158 total points (View CBB Sports Books).

With a highly touted incoming class, the Blue Devils (1-0) opened their season with an 86-43 rout of Columbia on Sunday night. Center Brian Zoubek had 18 points while guard Jon Scheyer and forward Lance Thomas each added 12.

``They're all good and we're going to need them,'' Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said after his team won its 41st straight nonconference home game.

Sophomore point guard Greg Paulus - sidelined for almost the entire preseason with a foot injury - had seven assists in only 19 minutes. His presence allowed Scheyer to move back to the wing and drain four 3-pointers, all in the first half.

Paulus led the Atlantic Coast Conference last season with 5.2 assists per game.

``It definitely took a lot of pressure off me having Greg there,'' Scheyer said.

Josh McRoberts, a 6-foot-10 sophomore coming back from off-season back surgery, finished with eight points seven rebounds, three assists and three blocks in 24 minutes.

``None of the veterans forced anything,'' Krzyzewski said. ``I like the fact our veterans don't feel in a game where we're winning pretty big that they need some superficial stats to show how good they are. They want to work on developing our team.''

Before Duke's regular-season debut, Georgia Southern (1-0) opened its season with a 116-73 rout of UC Davis. Donte Gennie had 26 points to lead all scorers while Louis Graham added 20 points and 11 rebounds.

Led by top scorer and Southern Conference player of the year Elton Nesbitt, Georgia Southern reached the NIT last season but was ousted in the first round by Charlotte.

``Obviously 21 points per game and the player of the year is going to be hard to replace, but I don't think you do it with individuals, you do it by committee and we have a good group of guards back that can step up and it will be interesting to see who does,'' coach Jeff Price said.

``From a point production standpoint, I don't think there's any question that our guards will be able to do it. We will miss Elton and that go-to kind of guy but I think well find a new one.''

Gennie was second on the Eagles with 12.7 points per game and shot a conference-best 45.2 percent from behind the arc.

``Donte has been our glue - I thought he was the glue for our team last year,'' Price said. ``We expect him to have a great season.''

Graham was third in scoring with 11.4 points per game, and was Georgia Southern's leading rebounder with 7.4 per game.

by: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us

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