Duke escaped with another NCAA tournament win on Friday night as they outlasted ACC rival Virginia Tech to advance to the Elite Eight.
The Blue Devils were carried to victory by three freshmen as Zion Williamson, Tre Jones and R.J. Barrett were the team’s three top scorers. But it was the absence of the team’s fourth five-star freshman, Cam Reddish, that has people asking questions ahead of Sunday’s showdown in the East Region with No. 2 seed Michigan State.
Reddish was removed from the Duke lineup only 10 minutes before tip on Friday night with an apparent knee injury as he was replaced by Alex O’Connell in the starting lineup. Following Duke’s win, head coach Mike Krzyzewski was mum on Reddish’s injury and future status for Sunday.
“We didn’t know until right before the game that he was not going to be able to play,” Krzyzewski said. “He went out, just had something wrong with his knee. He was limping, but we didn’t find out until right before the game.”
According to The Chronicle, Reddish was not on the floor during the first part of warmups, but he remained in uniform and on the bench during the entire game. It’s still unclear what caused Reddish’s injury, or when it happened, but it will be a major storyline for Duke during Sunday’s Elite Eight matchup with the Spartans.
Reddish is third on the Blue Devils in scoring at 13.6 points per game as the streaky scorer can be a potent perimeter option if he’s feeling it. Duke likely needs a healthy Reddish if they want to win the title since the team has been so poor shooting from the perimeter this season.