Duke Now

Mike Krzyzewski on what Dean Smith did best

After Duke’s 73-70 win at Florida State, Mike Krzyzewski addressed the media. It was the first time Krzyzewski had spoken since the death of former North Carolina coach Dean Smith, and Krzyzewski offered a few thoughts on his old rival-turned-friend.

“The thing that Dean did the best is that he made men of the boys that came to him,” Krzyzewski said. “And all those men revere him. They don’t love him, they revere him. That’s his biggest accomplishment. And he has done that better than anybody. I’m proud to be able to say that I was his friend. And I love him, and I love what he built and how he did it. It’s second to none. It’s really second to none. That’s why I don’t like to compare wins, championships and all that. No one could do it any better than him. Linnea and the kids have been incredible while he fought this horrible disease. So God bless him, God bless him, God bless him. We lost a great, great man in him.”

For more of Krzyzewski’s thoughts on Smith, check out this piece from 2013, were Krzyzewski reflects: “We became, actually, very good friends. I love Dean. He’s remarkable. Truly remarkable.”

And former Duke players Gene Banks and Jay Bilas shared their memories of Smith here.

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