And it wasn't, at least not on this day, a fluke. Mercer was the better team throughout. Truth to tell, this was among Mike Kzyzewski's worst coaching jobs. He took a team with Jabari Parker, Rodney Hood and Rasheed Sulaimon and didn't win the ACC regular-season title, didn't win the conference tournament and didn't last past the first full round of the Big Dance. It's not often we can call a Duke team badly coached, but this one wasn't cut from the usual K cloth.
As for Mercer: We saw again the value of seniors and seasoning and cohesion. The Bears weren't addled when Duke pulled ahead at the nine-minute mark, and by the end the little team from Macon was makin' hay. (Sorry. Couldn't resist.) Mercer was getting -- and making -- better shots, and if one of those hoity-toity ACC schools in need of a coach (Wake Forest, Virginia Tech, Boston College) aren't moved to give Bob Hoffman a ring ... well, there's no justice in this world.