College basketball fans love to explain how Duke gets all the calls every time there’s a call that goes Duke’s way.
That didn’t change on Friday night.
After Clemson’s Rod Hall hit a shot with nine seconds left to cap a comeback from 13 points down in the second half, Rodney Hood took the inbounds pass and went the other way, drawing a foul on K.J. McDaniels with just 3.8 seconds left on the clock. He hit a pair of free throws, giving the Blue Devils a 63-62 win.
You can see the video above. Do you think it was a foul?
The bigger issue is that Duke, once again, looked stagnant offensively late in a game. With the offensively-challenged Tyler Thornton playing crunch-time minutes with Quinn Cook strapped to the bench, the Tigers stormed back from a 47-34 deficit with just 12 minutes left in the game. In those final 12 minutes, Duke was just 5-for-14 from the floor with a pair of turnovers, which is more or less a mirror-image of the way that Duke lost to Wake Forest last week … and North Carolina two weeks before that .. and Clemson and Notre Dame back in January.
For a team that is as talented offensively as Duke is, they can put together a head-scratching scoring drought with the best of them.
We’ve said this all season long: the Blue Devils are improved defensively, but they are still not good enough to be able to continue to withstand their crunch-time offensive woes.
Foul or not, that’s what the talking point should be as Duke heads into a semifinal matchup with N.C. State on Saturday.