Elton Brand scored 18 points as unbeaten Duke celebrated its No. 1 ranking Monday night with a 98-40 rout of South Carolina State at Durham, N.C.
Earlier in the day, Duke (6-0) returned to the top spot in The Associated Press poll for the first time since Jan. 31, 1994.
The Blue Devils improved its non-conference record at Cameron Indoor Stadium to 109-2 since February 1983.
The Blue Devils used a smothering defense to beat the Bulldogs (0-2) for the sixth straight time.
Trajon Langdon had 17 points for the Blue Devils, followed by 16 from reserve Chris Burgess. Shane Battier had 15 and Mike Chappell added 13 for Duke.
Raheem Waller topped the Bulldogs, who finished with 33 turnovers, with seven points.
(5) S. Carolina 72, Belmont 61
At Columbia, S.C., BJ McKie scored 17 points as the Gamecocks opened the season 3-0 for the first time in nine years with a victory over the Bruins (1-3).
Coach apologizes for blowout
Long Island University coach Ray Haskins, whose team embarrassed Medgar Evers, a Division III opponent and LIU’s Brooklyn neighbor, by 179-62 last Wednesday, apologized Monday as criticism from the local basketball community mounted.
“It was an embarrassment to college basketball, and I regret that it happened,” Haskins said. “It’s kind of hard to find the right words to apologize, but I’m sorry.”
During the game at the former Brooklyn Paramount Theater, where LIU plays its home games, the up-tempo Blackbirds (2-3) broke the NCAA record for margin of victory, set by Southern University in its 154-57 victory over Patten on Nov. 26, 1993. LIU set other records with 76 field goals and 39 steals. Charles Jones, the nation’s leading scorer last season, had a school-record 53.