Jay Williams is one of the top 10 Duke players of all time, and had he not gotten in that terrible motorcycle accident, he likely would have had a long and successful NBA career. Sadly, he only played one season for the Chicago Bulls, and after a few failed comebacks, he went into the world of broadcasting. Make no mistake, the guy knows what he's talking about when it comes to college hoops, and he's been one of ESPN's top analysts for some time now. But when the conversation involves Duke, he often says things that hurt his credibility.
Take for example, the clip from earlier in the college basketball season, when Williams suggested that Duke could beat the Cleveland Cavaliers:
The same day this statement was made, Duke lost its first game against Gonzaga in the Maui Invitational. Later in the year the Blue Devils lost on their home court to Syracuse, a 20-13 team that barely cleared the .500 mark in ACC play. Duke lost three more games to college teams the rest of the year, but yeah, they could totally beat an NBA team.
We regret to inform you that Jay was at it again on Thursday night, when Duke played Syracuse in the ACC Tournament. The big news, aside from Zion Williamson scoring 29 points on 13-13 shooting and Duke advancing to the semifinal, was 'Cuse guard Frank Howard attempting to trip Zion while he ran back to play defense. Here's the Zapruder-like film that shows Howard clearly sticking his foot out:
Duke fans, as awful as they are, had every right to be up in arms. Zion just returned from his freak injury last month against North Carolina, and this move by Howard could be seen as an attempt to injure him. Luckily, Zion didn't fall, but Duke fans still have their torches and pitchforks out. And you can count Jay Williams among those fans, as he went on a rant at halftime on ESPN about how this had "no place in the game."
Thanks to the internet, an old video of Jay praising former Duke guard Grayson Allen for ... wait for it ... tripping people! You simply cannot make it up, folks:
Let's go ahead and file this one in the "TOUGH look" department. Maybe Jay shouldn't be assigned to any Duke-related discussions going forward, though that is basically an impossible ask as he works for ESPN, which has a daily programming schedule that reads "LeBron, Duke, LeBron, LeBron, Duke, LeBron."