Duke Football 2012 Bowl Capsule

Duke Blue Devils


The Duke Blue Devils finally get a little post-season love.  For the first time in forever, Duke has put together a full season to put itself in position for a bowl bid.  They have tried different combinations of coaches to try and resurrect a program that was strong back in the days of Steve Spurrier.  It looks like they found their man with David Cutcliffe.  The former tutor of Peyton Manning at Tennessee has gotten this team to believe.  He has built upon what Duke already had in the clubhouse and developed a good recruiting trail.  Catering to the talents of his squad, Cutcliffe has found ways to churn out wins.  The Blue Devils can enjoy bowl game festivities in 2012.

2012 Record: 6-6, 3-5
Coach: David Cutcliffe
Coach Bowl Record: 4-1

Big Wins: 11/29 at Wake Forest (34-27), 10/20 North Carolina (33-30)
Bad Losses: 11/17 at Georgia Tech (24-42), 11/24 Miami (45-52)

Offensively, the Blue Devils work best in the passing game.  Senior quarterback Sean Renfree has come a long way since starting his freshman year.  He is poised, and he makes much better decisions now than he did in previous seasons.  Considering Cutcliffe is a quarterback guru, Renfree could not have asked for a better man to come in and lead this team.  They are a top 40 throwing offense.  Renfree has eclipsed 8,500 yards for his career, including a 2,500 yard season this year.  He relies heavily on the steadiest receiver in the conference in Connor Vernon.  Vernon averages nearly six receptions per game.  He has 273 receptions for his career and over 3,600 yards.  Opposite him this season is Jamison Crowder, Duke’s leading receiver.  Renfree has options with those two guys flanking him on each side.  Duke has also given up just over a sack per game.  The offensive line has held up well over the course of the season.  Renfree’s decision making and intelligence in the pocket has also helped reduce sacks against.

Duke should be proud of its successful season.  This team does carry a lot of flaws though.  They have a bad rushing attack, which makes them one dimensional on offense.  Leading rusher Jela Duncan only has 516 yards rushing this season.  Josh Snead, their second prominent running back, only has 389 yards.  If the two top rushers on the team have less than 1,000 rushing on the season, that is not good.  Defensively, they give up well over 400 yards per game.  That’s the second worst mark in the conference and one of the worst in the country.  They allow the most points per game (35.0) of any team in the conference.  Against teams with similar talent and skill sets, Duke has found success.  Against superior talent and game planning, Duke has found itself on the wrong end of win-loss column.  Powerhouses like Stanford, Florida State, and Clemson are clearly light years ahead of Duke.  They gave up a total of 154 points in those games.  The Blue Devils also struggle on the road.  They lost all but one game one game away from home.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Jela Duncan, RB, 516 yards
Passing: Sean Renfree, QB, 2,755 yards
Receiving: Jamison Crowder, WR, 1,025 yards
Tackles: Walt Canty, S, 102
Sacks: Kenny Anunike, DE, 5.0
Interceptions: Ross Cockrell, CB, 5

2012 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 119.00 (103rd in nation, 8th in conference)
Passing Offense: 277.58 (33, 5)
Total Offense: 396.58 (66, 7)
Scoring Offense: 31.33 (45, 6)
Rushing Defense: 199.83 (101, 10)
Pass Defense: 262.25 (94, 10)
Total Defense: 462.08 (103, 11)
Scoring Defense: 35.00 (103, 12)
Turnover Margin: 0.50 (37, 4)
Sacks: 1.92 (66, 9)
Sacks Allowed: 1.58 (44, 4)

Recent Bowl Appearances:
1994    Hall of Fame Bowl    Wisconsin (20-34)
1989    All-American Bowl    Texas Tech (21-49)
1960    Cotton Bowl        Arkansas (7-6)
1957    Orange Bowl        Oklahoma (21-48)
1954    Orange Bowl        Nebraska (34-7)

*all team stats through 11/24


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