Tonight, we continue our annual Player’s Profile marathon until we Countdown to Craziness that will profile each and every Duke player on the roster…
So here is Bermuda Bob’s Profile of #13 Matt Jones …
There are few players who fully matriculate these days, so it’s particularly important to recognize a guy who has consistently contributed at Duke for his entire career, while on track to graduate with the class he arrived with.
Matt Jones reminds me of Cazzie Russell of yesteryear’s New York Knicks, who I grew up watching. He has the same gate and body profile going up and down the Court, but more over, his shooting finish is classic Cazzie !!! There is a great picture of Matt on his Profile Page on GoDuke this year that will show you what I mean. If you see me talking about him on Twitter, I regularly refer to his as “Cazzie” …
When Matt first came to Duke, Ro noted this about Matt:
“Although Jones is a McDonald’s All American and ranked No.22 by ESPN in his recruiting class, experts view him as a four-year player. This season it is hard to imagine him getting major playing time because there are a few established players ahead of him.”
Well, as usual, Ro was right.
It ought to be noted that Matt committed to Duke in November of 2011, well before he would enroll and play with the 2013-14 team. Few players have been recruited so far in advance. Jay (then Jason) Williams was another. That means, quite simply, that Coach K knew early on that Matt was a Duke-type player.
In many ways, Matt exemplifies the “Journeyman” title. Here’s why I say that:
- In the 2013-14 season, while this was the Jabari and Rodney team, Matt still appeared in 32 of the 35 games. Interestingly, in 235 minutes, he pulled down 27 Rebounds and logged in 11 Steals.
- In the 2014-15 Championship Season, Matt found his way into all of the 39 games and became that pivotal presence player who could impart his calming effect when things got frenetic. His 37 Steals and 39 Assists ranked him 4th on the team in both categories. He shot 45% from the Floor, 38% from outside the Arc, and 72% from the Charity Stripe.
- Last season, Matt played in 35 of 36 games, while logging in 3rd most minutes. As the 3rd Best Scorer on the roster, Matt shot 40% from the Floor, 42% from outside the Arc, and 74% from the Charity Stripe. He ranked 3rd in both Assists and Steals.
Having always to be ancillary to star-studded teams, Matt has had the uncanny ability to be a reliable contributor and excellent teammate. His leadership and steadiness are his greatest skills, and they will be called upon again this year.
This year he will again be needed to be a leader with a unique mixture of upperclassmen and Frosh. I’m not even sure if he’ll be a Starter, but I can guarantee you that “Cazzie” will be right there, making a difference some how, some way. In the end, I sincerely hope he can be part of yet another National Championship team.
Go get ’em Matt !!!
Rock On !!!
PS: Keep the beard, it looks great !!!
Thanks for reading !!!
Watch for our next introduction tomorrow …
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