February 11, 2009
Some like to complain about the attention showered on Duke and North Carolina, but if you're a fan of college basketball their two annual meetings are appointment viewing, even if you only watch to mock Greg Paulus. With the rivals set to tip-off tonight in Durham, today's Extra Onions looks at some Duke-North Carolina chatter from around the Internets.
-- Tyler Hansbrough and Danny Green will try to become only the second and third Tar Heel players to go 4-0 at Cameron during Mike Krzyzewski's tenure at Duke. The other: Buzz Peterson, who went undefeated from 1982-85, Coach K's first four years in Durham. Peterson was helped for three of those seasons by Michael Jordan, who was in the pros by the time Buzz got win number four.
-- Mike DeCourcy thinks the Ty Lawson-Greg Paulus match up is the one to watch this evening, presumably because it may lead to something like this.
-- If you live in ACC country tonight's Duke-UNC match up will, as always, be blacked out on ESPN and broadcast on local Raycom affiliates. This means I, and many others, will get an earful of Tim Brant and Mike Gminski and no Mike Patrick and Dick Vitale. This isn't as great as it sounds. Say what you will about Vitale, but at least he's interesting. Gminski is so boring he makes Joe Buck sound like Gus Johnson. It's the first year Billy Packer won't be doing color analysis on Raycom in a , which makes most people happy. I am not among them. (Packer may have been crotchety, but nobody knew the ACC better.)
-- Judging by the amount of times ESPN shows this play, it may be the most famous for Duke in the past quarter-century of this rivalry:
The weird thing is, Duke ended up losing that game. It's the moment that ESPN has selected to lionize Duke's part of this rivalry, but it came in a loss. That'd be like showing Larry Fitzgerald's second touchdown as the greatest moment in Arizona Cardinals history. (Wait, bad example.)
It's also interesting to note that Coach K wasn't on the sideline for that game. Assistant Pete Gaudet had taken over after Krzyzewski elected to have back surgery in the middle of the season. The Dukies missed the Tournament, Gaudet was charged with all the losses and Coach K came back the following fall. Some say that Coach K bolted on the season so he wouldn't tarnish his record.
-- And just so we're not accused of being anti-Duke: