College Hoops Barometer: Risers & Fallers
College Hoops Barometer: Risers & Fallers

This article is part of our College Hoops Barometer series.

The Duke Blue Devils are nearly everyone's favorite to cut down the nets this year, but Coach K's freshman dynamos may finally face some resistance during ACC play. In particular, a mammoth matchup with Virginia lurks on Jan. 19, in what will be an extreme clash of styles. The high-flying Blue Devils are one of the highest-scoring teams in the nation led by Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett. Meanwhile, UVA is No. 1 in the country in points allowed, surrendering a mere 51.5 points per game. As the old saying goes, something's gotta give. Duke will also have road battles with ranked opponents in Virginia Tech, Florida State and, of course, North Carolina later this season.

Perhaps it was a blessing in disguise that Duke lost to Gonzaga earlier in the 2018-19 campaign. It took the pressure off of a possible undefeated season, while showing that the Blue Devils may not be as invincible as they thought. That said, Zion Williamson still might not be human, and both he and R.J. Barrett have proven they can do a little bit of everything on the court. These "One and Done" phenoms will have a lot to say about how this college basketball season shakes out.

Let's look at some other notable performers in this edition of the College Hoops Barometer.

UPGRADE

James Palmer, G, Nebraska - The days of Palmer as a role player for the Miami Hurricanes have long since passed. Instead, Palmer has become the focal point for the

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jesse Siegel
Siegel covers college football, college basketball and minor league baseball for RotoWire. He was named College Sports Writer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.
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