Mike Krzyzewski, the Duke men’s basketball coach, will have lower back surgery this week and take a leave of absence from the team, the university announced on Monday.
Krzyzewski’s recovery time for the surgery, to remove a fragment of a herniated disk, is four weeks, Duke said.
“As soon as the doctors clear me to do so, I look forward to returning and giving our team 100 percent of my energy and attention, which is certainly something that they deserve,” Krzyzewski said in a statement.
Krzyzewski, 69, will coach the team on Wednesday night against Georgia Tech. Beginning with Saturday’s game against Boston College, an assistant coach, Jeff Capel, will step in. A former Duke player, he has been a head coach at Virginia Commonwealth and Oklahoma.
Duke is 12-2 this season and ranked No. 8 in the latest Associated Press poll. Despite the success, the team has attracted negative attention because of its star player Grayson Allen, who has tripped opponents three times in a year. Allen has been suspended indefinitely and stripped of the team captaincy.
In the 1994-95 season, Krzyzewski left the team after 12 games because of back problems. Under the assistant Pete Gaudet, the team failed to make the N.C.A.A. tournament for the only time in the past 33 years. Krzyzewski returned the next season.
A member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, Krzyzewski has a career record of 1,055-323, the most wins of any coach in Division I men’s history. He has coached the Blue Devils to five national championships.
He also recently finished a career as the United States men’s national team coach, winning three consecutive Olympic gold medals.
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