Clemson played great defense on Saturday. And we’re not talking about the football team, though Dabo Swinney and the boys were honored at halftime for their Orange Bowl triumph.
If Swinney ever needs a new defensive coordinator, perhaps he should walk over to the basketball offices and import Brad Brownell. He is building his program around defense and that has never been on display better than it was in the second half of the 72-50 win over 16th ranked Duke.
The Tigers held the Blue Devils without a basket for the final 6:32 (13 straight missed field goals) and limited them to just 8 second half baskets and 25% shooting. That, and a 13-2 run to finish the game, allowed them to complete a comeback from a 10 point first half deficit and snap a five game losing streak in the series.
The Tigers hammered Duke on the backboards with a 48-30 advantage turning 14 offensive boards into 17 points. And unlike in Thursday night’s loss at home to Florida State when the were killed inside, the Tigers easily owned the paint against Duke 38-20.
It was a triple double-double day for Clemson with KJ McDaniels recording 24 points and 10 rebounds, Jaron Blossomgame notching 14 and 10 and Landry Nnoko scoring 10 points and grabbing 13 boards.
Here’s more on the game in my video recap from Littlejohn Coliseum:
Post game interviews: