After his Blue Devils lost to Illinois 83-68 on Tuesday night, Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski questioned why college basketball was even being played during the COVID-19 pandemic. On Thursday, Alabama head coach Nate Oats said what a lot of us are thinking and took a pointed, public swipe at the Hall of Fame coach in the process.
Oats was asked about Coach K's comments and had this to say:
Wow, Nate Oats came out firing. I like it. He's also right that coaches need to be more cognizant of their behavior on the sidelines with masking, etc. if they're really serious about stopping the spread of COVID-19. Though the route he took to get there had me nervous for a minute.
Duke is currently 2-2 and has suffered home court losses to Michigan State and Illinois and, frankly, didn't look great in either contest. The Blue Devils have also had matchups with Gardner-Webb and Elon canceled. It has been a frustrating season for Coach K's team to say the least.
If Krzyzewski's squad was undefeated and looked like world beaters, I'm pretty sure his attitude would be different. In fact, Tate Frazier pointed out Coach K's push to ensure an NCAA Tournament happened earlier this year, but now it seems he's not sure why they're even trying to play:
The 46-year-old Oats is in his seventh year as a head coach and I love the fact that he had the stones to call out Krzyzewski.
Coach K often liked to complain about things when his teams aren't playing well, then defends them to the hilt when they are. It's a pattern we've seen unfold over years. This is pretty typical and not surprising at all.