All rise, please. Duke’s numbers are about to take the floor.

 

Since the Blue Devils are No. 1 (again), and unbeaten after 10 games (again), and Super Glued to the top of the national championship candidates’ list (again), it might be time to update some Mike Krzyzewski figures.

A big stack of them, ain’t they? Every so often, it’s fitting and proper to stand back a moment and notice the historical tonnage of it all. Even for the legions of Duke haters out there who would rather stick their faces in a fan than watch one more Blue Devil team in the Final Four.

So here are 20 stats that frame the Age of Krzyzewski.

18: Duke has been ranked No. 1 at some point during 18 of his 38 seasons. The Blue Devils have been there 79 weeks since 1997-98. North Carolina is next best in that span – at 39.

233: Duke has played 233 games for Krzyzewski as the top-ranked team. That’s 18.2 percent of the games he has coached at Duke. He passed John Wooden’s old record of 228.

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137: The Blue Devils just won their 137th consecutive non-conference home game, or 93 ahead of Arizona, who has the second most. The last time Duke lost one of those games, Bill Clinton was U.S. president and Marvin Bagley III was 11 months old.

92: Krzyzewski’s next NCAA Tournament victory will give him 92. That’s as many as John Wooden and Bob Knight combined. He has 40 more than John Calipari, 48 more than Bill Self.

42.5: Assuming Duke makes the tournament in March, which will certainly happen unless a meteorite hits Durham, this will be Krzyzewski’s 34th appearance. Meaning he will have coached in 42.5 percent of all the NCAA Tournaments ever played.

24: There have been 24 other men who won national championships while Krzyzewski has been at Duke. Sixteen of them are not in college coaching anymore.

15: This is the 15th season a Krzyzewski team has started 10-0. Thirteen of the other 14 advanced to at least the Sweet 16. Six went to the Final Four, three won the national championship.

1008: Krzyzewski has won 1,008 games at Duke, or 47.4 percent of Blue Devil victories in the school’s entire history. And Duke has been playing basketball since 1906.

17-2: Krzyzewski is the prince of darkness for the Big Ten. He is 17-2 in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. He has also gone 14-3 against the Big Ten in the NCAA Tournament, eliminating eight different league schools.  And 11-1 against Michigan State’s Tom Izzo.

11: Krzyzewski has won 11 ACC Tournament titles since 1997. The rest of the conference combined has won 10.

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20: Twenty wins are generally considered the benchmark for a good season in most places. If Krzyzewski retired today with his 1081 career victories, a coach starting out would have to do that for 54 years to catch him.

7: Krzyzewski has coached seven different Blue Devils to the national player-of-the-year award. Which probably are seven good reasons for a lot of these other numbers.

38: This is Krzyzewski’s 38th season at Duke. In the same time span at other bluebloods, North Carolina and Kansas have each had four different coaches, Indiana and Kentucky six, UCLA seven.

3 and 2: Krzyzewski has had national champions in three different decades, and two different centuries. Plus a Final Four team in four decades.

12-2: Krzyzewski has been in 14 Elite Eight games. He has lost only twice.

28: Krzyzewski has lost 28 NCAA Tournament games. That’s more than all but 19 coaches in history have won.

426: Duke has sold out 426 consecutive home games, more than any other college – or NBA – team.

110: It took Krzyzewski that many games at Duke to be ranked, since he was 38-47 his first three seasons. His first game at Duke was against Stetson, a 67-49 win in in 1980. His first game coaching a ranked Blue Devils team was against – yep — Stetson, an 80-69 win in February of 1984. Since that day, Duke has been ranked in 1,134 of 1,170 of Krzyzewski’s games – or 96.9 percent.

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5 and 12: Oh yeah. Krzyzewski has won five national championships, and gone to 12 Final Fours, matching Wooden on the last one, and nobody was supposed to ever match Wooden in anything when it comes to March. He has also beaten 12 different schools in the Final Four.

29: Krzyzewski’s first and most recent Final Fours were 29 years apart.

Most royalty don’t get reigns that long, but Krzyzewski turns 71 in two months, and there is no end in sight. Some numbers murmur. Put all his together, and they’re the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

Mike Lopresti is a member of the US Basketball Writers Hall of Fame, Ball State journalism Hall of Fame and Indiana Sportswriters and Sportscasters Hall of Fame. He has covered college basketball for 43 years, including 38 Final Fours. He is so old he covered Bob Knight when he had dark hair and basketball shorts were actually short.

The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NCAA or its member institutions.


 

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