Duke suffered heavy losses in the skill positions and on defense. The Blue Devils do return a veteran offensive line, five 300-pound men motivated by last year.
"We got beat and we got Spence (Romine) hurt," says Duke center Troy Andrews. "That can't happen."
Duke quarterback Spence Romine will return to a coaching staff that has stayed at Duke, along with their offensive schemes.
"This is the first time that we haven't had to learn a new offense," Andrews says. "So in spring, we are working on the fundamentals, the offensive line and technique. We are not teaching terminology."
"Guys need to know all of the nuances of it, they know where they need to line up, they don't have to think as much," says head coach Carl Franks.
"Sometimes you will be there in the middle of the game and bullets are flying and guys are coming, and I make a call and the guys will say, 'that was from three years ago,'" Andrews says.
Duke's last winning season came six years ago. This year's team with new starters at 13 positions will be a mystery.
"Passion and desire rule college football," Franks says. "It is an oblong ball. It can bounce funny ways. I think it could be exciting for our football team this year -- to see who our stars are going to be."
Duke will need passion and fortune in the talent-deep ACC.