Duke vs Kansas: 5 biggest questions for 2019 Champions Classic matchup

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WASHINGTON, DC – MARCH 31: Tre Jones #3 of the Duke Blue Devils celebrates a three point basket against the Michigan State Spartans during the first half in the East Regional game of the 2019 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Capital One Arena on March 31, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

What are the big questions that will decide the Duke-Kansas matchup in the Champions Classic? Here’s what to watch for in the season opener for both teams.

The Champions Classic is the headliner of NCAA basketball’s opening night on November 5th and will feature the top four teams in the country going up against each other. Duke and Kansas will meet in the first game at Madison Square Garden in a matchup featuring plenty of headlines.

The Blue Devils have a lineup that will heavily feature their four-man recruiting class (five-star prospects Vernon Carey Jr. and Matthew Hurt, along with four-star prospects Wendell Moore and Cassius Stanley) as they attempt to replace last season’s star trio of RJ Barrett, Cam Reddish, and Zion Williamson. Coach K’s squad may not be as talented as they were last year and, like any team playing mostly freshmen, no one knows just how good they will be.

Kansas, on the other man, only figures to play one or two members of their freshmen class in a minimal role. They have the more experienced roster led by center Udoka Azubuike and point guard Devon Dotson but lack Duke’s talent level in terms of NBA Draft prospects.

Two of the game’s legendary head coaches are also going against each other in Mike Krzyzewski and Bill Self. They have met a handful of times with Self winning the last three, most recently in the 2018 Elite Eight. Duke’s last win over Kansas came in 2011.

What are the most important things that will decide the winner of this game? Here are the five biggest questions worth watching:

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