VIDEO: Duke Media Day: Jon Scheyer
After his freshman year, Kyle Filipowski had racked up incredible numbers and won ACC Freshman of the Year honors to go along with them. The 7-footer was named ACC Tournament MVP, honorable mention All-America and the Kyle Macy National Freshman of the Year. But that wasn’t enough for No. 30.
Despite having the option of taking his talents to the NBA and earning millions of dollars, Filipowski decided to undergo surgery to repair both hips and return to college for a sophomore year. The surgery was projected to keep him out of action until this Fall, potentially putting his preparation for the upcoming season at jeopardy.
But as head coach Jon Scheyer explained in July, Filipowski’s work ethic during the recovery progress and a talented in-house medical team at Duke Sports Medicine held to better-than-expected rehabilitation this offseason.
“Everybody’s doing stuff on the court. Flip [Kyle Filipowski] with his progression since the end of the season has been incredible. He’s stronger than he’s ever been, more flexible, and he’s doing shooting, non-contact stuff on the court. He’s frankly way ahead of schedule, you hope by August he’d be doing the things he’s doing now. He’s a couple weeks ahead. Our medical team has done an amazing job with him.”
In a podcast appearance on Monday with Jon Rothstein, Scheyer explained that Filipowski’s rehab has progressed so far along that he was medically cleared for all basketball activities. Obviously, that’s massive news for the upcoming season, but it’s even bigger news considering that the Blue Devils can start practicing a week from today on Monday, November 25th.
Scheyer told Rothstein that Mark Mitchell is fully cleared to practice as well, which actually took place earlier this summer, and Jeremy Roach and Christian Reeves have also worked their way through injuries and surgeries as well. With the team fully healthy, the Blue Devils head in to the 2023-24 season as one of the top teams in the country. The head coach is hoping to lean on one of the deepest rosters in the sport to play fast and put pressure on opposing defenses.
“That’s how we want to play, and I think the difference this year is that we feel like we can be more of an explosive team in transition. We have really good guard play and very mobile bigs, but sharing the ball is going to be a key thing. We can’t be about individual stats, we’re going to be a team with different leading scorers. But sharing the ball, playing fast, playing with space. We weren’t able to do that as much last year. We had to muck it out a little bit, we had to really beat you up on the boards and protect our rim. Again, protecting our rim this year is important, we have to do it a different way though. But next years’ team, I think the spacing, the scoring, driving… and of course, making the right reads, because you have shooting around you. So hopefully that opens up space for Flip, for Mark, for our guards to get in there and draw some attention.”