Five observations from Duke men's basketball's first half against Army

Bulls’ losses will be their gain if they get their hands on a Duke star

At halftime, Duke only leads the Black Knights 50-42.

The Blue Devils did not have the same lights-out shooting stroke as they displayed during their historic 118-84 statement victory over Kentucky on Tuesday night, nor did they play the same level of shutdown defense. Duke should have no trouble dispatching this opponent.

The Blue Devils appear to be the real deal after one game. It is not often that a program like Kentucky experiences a defeat of that magnitude. Williamson and fellow first-year players RJ Barrett and Cam Reddish combined for 83 points, almost outscoring Kentucky by themselves.

Duke like many blue blood programs faces expectations every single year.

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As a result of the score being much closer than expected, Krzyzewski, in his 39th season at the helm in Durham after serving as head coach at West Point from 1975-80, won't likely be pulling his starters as early as most, including this writer at Ball Durham, expected him to. After winning by over 30 points against Kentucky, another 30-point win will probably happen.

Aside from putting the earthquake-inducing dunks that made him a social-media sensation on full display, Williamson demonstrated a polished handle and even drained a shot from beyond the arc for his first points in a Duke uniform. It could get ugly if Army does not make shots.

"They're smart and they know better than to think every game is going to be like that", Duke junior center Marques Bolden said. But a new, more interesting hypothetical posed this week in the wake of Duke's dominant defeat of No. 2 Kentucky is this: Could Duke take down the Cleveland Cavaliers as now constituted?

It's the best hypothetical question in sports: Could (insert dominant college team) beat (insert woeful professional team) if they played?

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