With practice starting Friday, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski decided to name his captains a few days early.
Quinn Cook – the team’s only scholarship senior – and junior Amile Jefferson will be the captains for the 2014-15 Blue Devils.
“They’re two veterans, returning starters,” Krzyzewski said in a statement. “They know us, they know what we want to accomplish and their personalities just fit in so perfectly with the development of teamwork on our team.”
Cook came off the bench for the final 10 games last season, averaging 11.6 points and 4.4 assists per game overall. Jefferson started all but two ACC games and all postseason contests. He averaged 6.5 points and 6.9 rebounds per game.
Krzyzewski spoke favorably of both two weeks ago at his press conference.
“Amile is our best on-the-court communicator,” Krzyzewski said. “He talks well. He understands the game well.
“I’m not saying he’s Battier but that’s what Shane (Battier) did. He communicated the game while it was going on. You didn’t have to wait for a time out. It’s not just the point guard calling out plays. Communicating feelings, the nature of the game, pushing somebody while the game is going on. I think Amile has a huge role on this team.”
Krzyzewski cited a lack of on-court communication and inability to adjust on the fly several times last season as shortcomings of the team that would bow out in its opening NCAA tournament game against Mercer.
Jefferson wasn’t able to practice this summer due to a hip injury, but Krzyzewski estimated he was back to 95 percent on Sept. 19th and expected his explosiveness to come back by the time the Blue Devils start playing games.
As for Cook, Krzyzewski said he has been “exceptional” in helping bring the freshmen into the fold. And especially so with Tyus Jones, the top-ranked incoming point guard.