Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski explains decision to start Paolo Banchero despite pending charge: ‘We already are handling it’



Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski started Paolo Banchero for the Blue Devils’ 92-52 victory over Gardner-Webb on Tuesday, despite the fact the freshman is currently facing a charge of aiding and abetting DWI.

Banchero’s charge stems from the Sunday morning arrest of Duke junior guard Michael Savarino — Krzyzewski’s grandson — after the latter was pulled over and charged with DWI, driving after consuming alcohol under the age of 21 and a stop sign violation. The 20-year-old, who was driving Banchero’s car, blew a blood alcohol content level of .08. Banchero, who was also in the vehicle, was released at the site of the traffic stop.

MORE: Coach K’s grandson, Banchero face charges related to DWI

Following the victory on Tuesday night, Krzyzewski addressed the media on his roster decision. He explained that Banchero’s involvement in the situation was entirely different from his grandson’s. He also said “the decisions we made are in conjunction with our authorities, my superiors, and we’re taking action.”

Krzyzewski addressed a question concerning his grandson’s arrest. While he acknowledged there was a violation of standards from both Banchero and Savarino, he said the situation will be handled internally.

Banchero, the No. 2 player in the 2021 class per 247Sports’ Composite rankings, finished with 10 points on 4-of-9 shooting in the victory. He added eight rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block.

MORE: Opening night of Mike Krzyzewski’s final season is child’s play for Duke’s latest group of one-and-done talents

Banchero has a court date scheduled for Dec. 8 related to the arrest, while Savarino is scheduled for Dec. 9 on a DWI charge. According to an earlier statement from Krzyzewski, university officials will determine if further actions from the school are necessary.

Duke’s next game is at home vs. Lafayette at 8 p.m. ET on Friday.


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