Secret Scrimmage!


Duquesne players listen to the coaches during a public scrimmage for season ticket holders.

Duquesne players listen to the coaches during a public scrimmage for season ticket holders.

Shh! Come over here. No, no, don’t look so obvious about it. Ok, act natural.

Stop doing that with your hands.

Ok, good. Here’s the story.

Fans who are ESPN insiders or read threads on Reddit know by know that Duquesne will take part in a so-called Secret Scrimmage against Miami of Ohio on October 26th. This was rumor, but the Insider list would seem to confirm it. The nonexistent game will take place at the home of the Red Hawks, a MAC team that was 9-22 last year.

To those unfamiliar with the practice, secret scrimmages are the silly name for the practice of Division I teams playing one another in the preseason with absolutely no publicity, no media coverage, and no one from outside of the program in attendance other than people who are essential to the execution of the game. No stats are to be leaked out and no official stats are even kept. This is solely for the benefit of the participating teams.

The secret scrimmages came about when the NCAA ceased allowing traveling corporate sponsored semi-pro teams to play against collegiate teams back in 2004. The Dukes played these teams, as did most of college basketball. For example, Duquesne welcomed Czech Select prior to the 2003 regular season. Nowadays, schools can play two exhibition games and can go against Division I teams in secret scrimmages, lower division teams in public games, or one and one.

Miami is coming off of a year in which they were one of the worst rebounding teams in college basketball – 335th, nationally. However, they have a host of players 6’7″ and taller, including 6’10″ center Blake McLimins  and 7′ center John Hawkins. Neither player was with the Hawks last year, so certainly Ferry will be looking to see how his flock of forwards will be able to stack up against these two. McLimins is a BCS transfer who used to play for Michigan, though he saw his minutes diminish each year that he was with the Wolverines.

Quinten Rollins is the PG and will likely be the matchup for Colter unless the Dukes choose to mix things up. Rollins is more a traditional point guard than Colter and relies on assists to get the job done. He scored in double digits last year only twice.

The leader for the Read Hawks is Will Felder, the returning leading scorer for this team. This 6’7″ SFU transfer is athletic and consistent. He averaged roughtly 11 points and 5 rebounds last year.

Of course, all we can do is speculate. This game is not public, no official stats are kept, and we will know absolutely nothing about it at all. Still, it’s nice to see the Dukes taking advantage of the ability to play other Division I competition. Even though Miami has been rather poor of late, there are definitely some players that will challenge the Dukes and give the coaching staff some vital information. Further, this will be far better data than the staff could ever acquire from a game against a DII or DIII school.

With the game only a few short days away, just knowing that it’s happening gets the adrenaline pumping for another college basketball season!

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Tags: Duquesne Miami Red Hawks Secret Scrimmage