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Louisville will open play in the ACC Tournament on Thursday afternoon against Duke; the Blue Devils beat Clemson 79-72

BROOKLYN, N.Y. - The University of Louisville basketball team will play Duke in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament on Thursday afternoon in the Barclays Center. Duke beat Clemson 79-72 in the second round.

It's the game everyone expected.

The University of Louisville basketball team will get Duke on Thursday afternoon at 2 o'clock in the second round of the ACC Tournament at the Barclays Center after the Blue Devils downed Clemson 79-72.

It's a rematch of the Jan. 4 game at the KFC Yum Center when the Cardinals won 78-69.

"Louisville is one of the elite teams in the country with one of the best coaches in the game," Duke freshman Jayson Tatum said. "But we are a totally different team than we were then. We have improved a lot since then."

The Blue Devils didn't have senior Amile Jefferson in that game and Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski was still on the mend after back surgery when the Cardinals downed Duke.

Tatum said not having those two with the Blue Devils was "a really big difference."

"Amile might be the most important player on our team," Tatum said of the senior who averages 11.2 points and 8.5 rebounds a game.

Duke leads the overall series 7-6 with the Cardinals but the Cardinals have won two in a row. The Cardinals are 2-3 in neutral site games, including the 1986 national championship game and the 2013 Elite Eight game in Indianapolis.

Louisville did not attend the game on Tuesday between Duke and Clemson. The Cardinals were practicing at a nearby gym.

"They're a talented team and physical," Jefferson said. "They're tough."


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