Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, in comments made to media before the Blue Devils departed Tuesday for Anaheim, talked about Arizona sophomore forward Derrick Williams.
Williams has been a first-team or second-team All-American, as selected by various organizations.
“Derrick has to be a first-team All-American,” Coach K said. “I don’t know how he doesn’t get the publicity.”
(Of course, Duke detractors would say that the Blue Devils get more than their fair share of that.)
What Krzyzewski marveled at was Williams’ 313 free throw attempts, which leads the nation. That’s 8.7 per game … which doesn’t even tell the whole story, according to Krzyzewski.
“When he is going to the line, he gets his team to the line,” Krzyzewski said. “He gets his team into the bonus and double bonus. So whatever points he scores, he gets more points that he doesn’t get credit for that he gets for his teammates.”
Williams is averaging 19.1 points per game, the only double-digit score on the team. Arizona has four others who average between 7.8 and 9.5 points.
The Wildcats have five players who average at least one made 3-pointer per game and has others, such as Brendan Lavender and MoMo Jones who can hit the long-range shot.
“They can shoot the ball,” Krzyzewski said. “It’s not like you can just double and leave people. They’re a well-rounded offensive team and they play hard defense.”
Arizona and Duke will play Thursday in the Sweet 16 in Anaheim.