PHILADELPHIA — Mike Krzyzewski confessed that he fell asleep during halftime of Harvard’s upset win over New Mexico Friday night, but then he caught the fever.
“I watched and I didn’t fall while they were playing,” Coach K said after his No. 2 Blue Devils beat No. 15 Albany, 73-61, behind a combined 49 points from Seth Curry and Mason Plumlee at the Wells Fargo Center.
“I fell asleep at halftime. When I woke up they had the lead and I didn’t turn off the game.”
Harvard, a No. 14 seed, went on to mess up a lot of people’s brackets with their 68-62 win over No. 3 New Mexico for the program’s first-ever tourney win.
Harvard coach Tommy Amaker, of course, was Coach’s point guard at Duke in the mid-80s, and the coach credits that group with putting Duke on the road to where it is now, winner of four NCAA championships and a perennial contender.
“Tommy and Johnny [Dawkins] and [Mark] Alarie and [Jay] Bilas and [David] Henderson, they all started this stuff,” Coach K said. “Tommy’s like a son to me. I’m ecstatic for him.”
Krzyzewski pointed out that Harvard’s accomplishment is even greater considering they lost two captains before the season began when they dropped out of school amid a massive academic scandal.
“He’s done that with losing his two best players this year,” Coach K said of Amaker, the former Seton Hall and Michigan coach. “I’m not going to want to schedule them next year .They got everybody back and those two guys.”
The Crimson next play No. 6 Arizona Sunday.
“They got a chance,” Coach K said.
“They beat New Mexico, they got a chance to beat anybody. I mean, New Mexico had a chance to beat anbyody.
“This tournament really anybody this year can win. As long as you are not satisfied with the position that you got to and it seems like a lot of teams are not satisfied.”
Photo: Getty Images
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.