There are some things that players do that just don’t show up in a box score in the newspaper. Heart. Drive. Determination. Trust. Bo Ryan looks for those qualities in a player. Duje Dukan has those qualities and it showed this past season as the Wisconsin Badgers made a run to the Final Four.
Dukan showed a glimpse of how well he can play early on in the season. In the first game of the season against St. John’s, Duje turned some heads with his performance. Dukan scored 15 points on 4-of-6 shooting, 2-for-3 from the three point line. It would be the most points Dukan would score in a game all season.
But that’s not what made him a reliable option off the bench for coach Ryan. It was how he could be trusted to come in to give the starters a breather if needed. It was how he could be trusted to step in if players were in foul trouble. And it was how he could be trusted to run the offense without making stupid mistakes and play tough defense when called upon.
Dukan embraced being a role player coming off the bench. He didn’t get discouraged with playing time. When he was on the court he gave everything he had. Whether it was for 10 minutes, 12 minutes, 15 minutes or 20, Duje played his tail off. It’s that kind of determination that made Bo Ryan not hesitate to call upon Dukan.
And it’s that kind of drive that will make Dukan an even better player come next season. The Wisconsin Badgers are poised and positioned to make another run at the Final Four. Duje Dukan will be a key player for the Badgers to make such a run.