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Devils In Detail - Departures
Devils In Detail - Sophomores
By Rob Clough
October 19, 2010

A Look at Duke's Sophomore Class


Editor's Note: Devils in Detail is a periodic DWHoops feature that looks closely at Duke's roster. Our special preseason edition continues with a look at Duke's sophomore class. Like the junior class, this class has shrunk to two players due to a departure -- in this case, Alexis Rogers. We will look back at her Duke career in a "Devils in Detail - Departures" feature next week.

Allison Vernerey

Key Stats: 7 ppg, 5 rpg
Allison Vernerey
Allison Vernerey grabs a rebound in the ACC Tournament.

The Overview: While Allison struggled in the NCAA tournament, she still had a fine frosh season overall. She made the ACC's all-rookie squad and had a big impact in the ACC tournament. In the finals, she had 7 points, 7 rebounds and 3 blocks against the Wolfpack in a hotly contested game. The NCAA's were another level of intensity and physicality that she wasn't quite prepared for, though not for a lack of effort. Indeed, she still managed 5 rebounds against Baylor's Brittney Griner. Vernerey was the essence of a skilled young player who was able to take advantage of many opponents with that skill set, but not bigger or more talented foes. Everyone in the country knew she could only go left by the end of the year, but Vernerey dutifully tried to pick up more skills as the year went on. She improved her foul shooting in ACC play and even started to take 10-15' jumpers. There were times when she was able to finish with her right hand, albeit against opponents without a lot of size. This is a player who wants to compete and succeed quite badly and that attitude helped her bust through the rookie "wall".

What's Next: Allison was supposed to be playing with the French under-19 team this summer with old friend and new foe Diandra Tchatchouang. An injury scuttled that plan, though she should be fine by the start of the season. Vernerey will need to work on her ball handling under pressure as well as her jumpshot. A more confident handle will allow her to move a bit more quickly when she feels a double-team coming on the left low block. Above all else, she has to become more comfortable with her free throw stroke. There are all sorts of hitches in her approach at the moment, and only repetition with a new shooting form will improve that. The last thing she'll need to work on is simply understanding the speed of the game in terms of passing. She had a lot of turnovers last year from trying to force passes from the high post down inside, misjudging the closing speed of her opponents. Vernerey's work ethic is top-notch, and I expect her to make a bigger impact as a sophomore.


Janee Johnson

The Overview: Janee tore her ACL and had to sit out her freshman season. The good news is that she healed from her injury and was starting to practice with her teammates. Coach McCallie noted that Johnson's strength was very impressive, both on the block and in whipping around passes.

What's Next: Janee has a lot of work in front of her. Trying to work her way into an insanely deep rotation of players while coming off an injury will be a tall task. She does have three advantages: first, she knows the system after a year of sitting in on practices and watching games. Second, she has a year under her belt as a student and won't have to worry about the sort of academic transition that can be quite a shock for some players. Third, she's already had a chance to build chemistry with her teammates. Assuming she's able to spend a decent amount of time on campus this summer, she'll have the opportunity to develop chemistry on the court as well. While the team will be deep, there is one area of concern: size at power forward. Given her size and strength, Johnson will have an opportunity to earn minutes if she's in shape, if she can rebound, and if she can play punishing & physical defense. Given her size and strength, she could make herself useful as a designated banger off the bench.



3 ACC Questions: #3 Florida State
 
Devils In Detail - Departures

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