DURHAM --The Duke Blue Devils men's basketball team held its "Countdown to Craziness" season-opening event on Saturday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium. The annual celebration featured live entertainment, music and games prior to the introduction of the 2016-17 team, which concluded the evening by participating in an intrasquad scrimmage for the general public.
The festivities began in an area on Duke's campus known as Krzyzewskiville, where fans greeted the Blue Devils as they entered the arena. Captains Amile Jefferson, Matt Jones and Grayson Allen took turns thanking the crowd on behalf of the team for supporting the basketball program.
Once inside, the Blue Devils could no longer contain their excitement for the upcoming season. Not only did the team throw a dance party in the locker room before taking the court, it also showed off moves to the packed house of "Cameron Crazies" prior to the scrimmage.
Former Duke star and current Los Angeles Lakers rookie Brandon Ingram could not attend, but he still wanted to watch the festivities as they unfolded.
Someone send me a link where I can watch #Countdown2Craziness live.— Brandon X. Ingram (@B_Ingram13) October 22, 2016
Other alumni of the basketball program were luckier than Ingram. Philadelphia 76ers center Jahlil Okafor along with former Portland Trail Blazers draftee and current Duke basketball special assistant coach Nolan Smith were on hand to take in the scrimmage and meet with this season's players, including freshman center Marques Bolden.
Fellow freshman Jayson Tatum led all scorers with 18 points in the scrimmage.
"Countdown to Craziness" has traditionally offered recruits the opportunity to become more familiar with Duke's program and fan base. High school prospects Wendell Carter, Gary Trent Jr. and Matt Coleman were in attendance. The Blue Devils are currently the favorites to land Trent Jr. and Carter.
The Blue Devils are coming off a 25-win season in which they advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament. Duke will host two exhibition games before opening the regular season with a home contest against the Marist Red Foxes on Nov. 11.
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