3 Teams Duke Wants to Avoid in the South Region

The Duke Blue Devils should hope to not face these teams on their side of the bracket on their way to the Final Four.
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It's that time of the year. We have all been waiting for this moment ever since Duke flamed out in the second round of the 2023 NCAA Tournament. Now coach Jon Scheyer and company have a chance to redeem themselves.

Duke's March Madness journey starts on Friday against the #13 seed Vermont. Hopefully avoiding an upset there, the Blue Devils will have their hands full in the South region.

Plenty of teams are dealing with serious injuries to key players, so there is potentially a Final Four run for the Blue Devils, but they would be better off avoiding these teams on their side of the bracket.

#12 James Madison

Ok, hear me out. Yes, on paper, James Madison doesn't seem like a team Duke should be scared of facing. And there is a good chance JMU will lose in the first round to #5 Wisconsin anyway.

However, a potential second-round matchup against the Dukes should worry the Blue Devils. James Madison dominated the Sun Belt conference all season as they haven't lost a game since January. Having won 13 straight, they have the utmost confidence and momentum heading into March Madness.

If JMU beats Wisconsin and faces Duke in the second round, they will have the advantage of not having anything to lose. Playing with house money is a huge advantage in the NCAA tournament when young players on favored teams can crumble under pressure.

Plus, the Dukes have a very dynamic offense, led by Terrence Edwards Jr. and T.J. Bickerstaff, who like to put a lot of pressure on the rim with their drives. Kyle Filipowski's tendency to get in foul trouble against such offenses could prove to be lethal in a potential matchup.