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College basketball officially starts nationwide tonight which means it’s a chance for all of us in this divided nation and world come together in one cause:
Hating Duke basketball.
As a kid I ate it all up. Mike Krzyzewski was a hero in my 15-year old eyes when Duke won it all in the spring of 2001, but 20 years later I’m grateful to have seen the light since and realized just how insufferable that entire program is. How Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey developed into such a likable figure after spending eight years on Krzyzewski’s bench is beyond me, but I digress.
With Krzyzewski starting his final season as Duke’s head coach this year let’s honor him by naming the 10 Most Annoying Dukies of All-Time:
10. Kyrie Irving
DCredit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports
He only played 11 games at Duke as he battled a foot injury during the 2010-11 season but Kyrie Irving and his refusal to acknowledge the Earth is round get the final spot on this list.
9. Plumlee Brothers
Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The thing about the Plumlee brothers (Miles, Mason, and Marshall) is that they weren’t dirty players, weren’t outwardly annoying like the rest of this list, but they were just ALWAYS THERE and they won national titles.
From the start of the 2008-09 season through the conclusion of the 2015-16 campaign, there was at least one Plumlee on Duke.
Shoutout to the youngest brother Marshall who is now an Army Ranger.
8. Jon Scheyer
Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
To quote the movie Stepbrothers: “It’s your face. Again, you’re doing great, man, The Catalina Wine Mixer. We’re all having a great time, having fun. You pulled it off…but if you don’t change your face… I’m gonna change it for you.”
We’ll be seeing plenty “Scheyer Face” in the coming years as he’s already been pegged as Krzyzewski’s successor.
7. Chris Collins
Credit: Doug Pensinger/ALLSPORT
Chris Collins was essentially the prototype for many of the dislikable Dukies that would come after him. He didn’t score a ton as a Blue Devil (1992-1996), he was a grindy defender, and he talked smack as if he was putting up 27 points a night when in reality he averaged 9.1 points per game for his Duke career.
6. Steve Wojciechowski
AP Photo/Bob Galbraith
The strength of this list can be stated by Wojciechowski checking in just sixth despite his trademark floor slapping.
5. Greg Paulus
Credit: James Lang-USA TODAY Sports
4. J. J. Redick
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Redick, Duke’s all-time leading scorer, owner of a beautiful three-point stroke, and someone who talked as much smack as seemingly anyone to wear the blue and white before or after would earn a spot on the Dislikeable Dukies Mt. Rushmore.
3. Grayson Allen
DCredit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Grayson Allen is remembered for his time at Duke more for tripping opponents and freaking out instead for his actual play on the court.
2. Christian Laettner
AP Photo/Eric Risberg
Christian Laettner made perhaps the most famous shot in college basketball history and was part of the Dream Team. He was also the guy who would literally step on opponents as they lay on the ground, regularly presented himself with the arrogance so often associated with Duke basketball, and most importantly, was the best player on a pair of national championship teams that added to the dislike like gas on a fire.
1. Mike Krzyzewski
AP Photo/Ben McKeown
Like a fish, Duke basketball stinks from the head. Mike Krzyzewski has won more games than any other college basketball coach all-time and done so by acting like he puts his players above everything else while many of those around the program will tell you the exact opposite.
There was him talking down to Dillon Brooks after the Oregon star helped eliminated Duke from the NCAA Tournament in 2016 and plenty of other examples of him being the exact opposite of what he actually portrays.
Oh, and there was that American Express commercial from 20 years ago or so that still makes me want to throw up all over myself.