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Justise Winslow: I Probably Still Would Have Gone To College

"I had a great year at Duke," Winslow said

The DA Show
March 13, 2018 - 11:49 am

In 2014, Justise Winslow was a McDonald’s All-American, a Parade All-American, and Texas’ Mr. Basketball. But even if he could have gone straight to the NBA, he likely wouldn’t have.

“No, I think I would have gone to college regardless,” Winslow said on The DA Show. “Jumping straight to the NBA, it wasn’t even an option so it’s hard to even say. But I had a great year at Duke. I don’t take it back at all.”

Winslow averaged 12.6 points, 6.5 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.3 steals and shot 41.8 percent from three for Duke, helping the Blue Devils to the 2015 national title. Duke beat Robert Morris, San Diego State, Utah, Gonzaga, Michigan State, and Wisconsin in the NCAA Tournament.

Winslow recalls being nervous against Robert Morris, which Duke beat 85-56.

“It took me to the end of that first game to find a rhythm, find a flow,” he said. “But I was confident in our team. We had just lost in the semifinals (of the ACC Tournament) to a good Notre Dame team, but it was kind of a wake-up call for us. I think it was one of the best things to happen to us as a group was losing in the ACC (Tournament). It just woke us up. We went on a run, won six in a row and won a championship.”

Winslow, 21, has been fortunate to learn from two of the greatest minds in basketball history: Mike Krzyzewski and Pat Riley. He said their knowledge of the game and desire to win give them an edge on the competition.

“I think (those are the) two things that separate them,” Winslow said. “For Coach K, it involves recruiting, going out on the road and getting to know young players. For coach Riley, it’s been as a player and a coach and someone in the front office. Just their desire to win is a characteristic that really separates them.”

Winslow, the 10th overall pick in 2015, is averaging 7.2 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists for Miami (36-32), which is currently the 8-seed in the East. The Heat have won four of their last six games.