No. 7 Duke will be without starting forward Amile Jefferson on Tuesday in a critical ACC tilt at No. 9 Florida State due to an injury Jefferson suffered in Duke’s win over Boston College on Saturday.
Associate head coach Jeff Capel, who is the current interim coach with Mike Krzyzewski on the mend following back surgery this weekend, said on the ACC’s weekly conference call that Jefferson is dealing with a bone bruise in the foot. Duke gave no timetable for his return – they haven’t done that with any of the players they’ve lost this season – but hearing the word “bruise” has to be comforting for Duke fans. This is Jefferson’s right foot we’re talking about, the same foot that he broke last season, which cost him all but nine games.
Jefferson has been terrific for the Blue Devils this season. He’s been playing at a borderline all-american level and is probably the best defensive option that Duke has on the interior. As good as Harry Giles III and Marques Bolden have the potential to be, they’ve mostly struggled in their limited minutes this year. This will be a great opportunity for them to get some reps, which is something that has become all-too-common for Duke. Of the 17 games they’ve played this year, 15 of them have featured at least one starter out with injury.