In-Depth Look at the UNC-Duke Rivalry
We all know the Duke-UNC Rivalry.
The Carolina–Duke rivalry, also referred to as the UNC-Duke rivalry, the Duke-Carolina rivalry, The Battle of Tobacco Road, or The Battle of the Blues, is a fierce rivalry, particularly in men's college basketball, between the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University athletic teams.
It is considered one of the most intense rivalries in all of sports: a poll conducted by ESPN in 2000 ranked the basketball rivalry as the third greatest North American sports rivalry of all-time, and Sports Illustrated on Campus named it the #1 "Hottest Rivalry" in college basketball and the #2 rivalry overall in its November 18, 2003 issue.
The Big Stats
ACC Regular Season Championships:
North Carolina - 27
Duke - 18
ACC Tournament Championships
Duke - 17 (T-1st)
North Carolina - 17 (T-1st)
NCAA Final Fours
North Carolina - 18 (1st all-time)
Duke - 14 (3rd all-time)
NCAA Tournament Championships
North Carolina - 5 (tied for 3rd all-time)
Duke - 3 (tied for 5th all-time)
Regular Season History
First Meeting January 24, 1920
First Result UNC 36 - Duke 25
All-time Series UNC leads 130-97
March 2nd, 1968 #10 Duke vs #3 UNC (3OT)
Duke defeated North Carolina 87-86 in triple overtime at Duke Indoor Stadium (later renamed Cameron Indoor Stadium) when seldom used Duke junior Fred Lind erupted for 16 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 blocks after having only scored 21 points total in his entire career.
When Duke All-American center Mike Lewis picked up his third foul in the first half (and Warren Chapman, his backup, had a knee injury), Duke coach Vic Bubas called on Lind to fill the void against North Carolina greats Rusty Clark and Bill Bunting.
Lind went on to carry the Blue Devils in the three overtimes, blocking North Carolina's shot attempt at the end of regulation, making two free throws at the end of the first overtime, and knocking down a 15-foot jumper at the buzzer to send it into a third overtime.
At the conclusion of the game, the students carried Lind to Duke’s main quad.
March 2nd, 1974 #4 UNC 96, Duke 94 (OT)
Eight Points in Seventeen Seconds.
Duke led North Carolina by 86–78 with 17 seconds left. Despite the deficit and despite the fact that the game took place prior to the implementation of the three point shot, North Carolina rallied with a pair of free throws and two forced turnovers, and after Duke's Pete Kramer missed two free throws, tied the score on Walter Davis's 30 foot bank shot as time expired.
The game went into overtime, where North Carolina prevailed, 96–92. To this day, many regard this comeback as the greatest in college basketball history.
March 12, 1989: #9 North Carolina 77, #7 Duke 74
In one of the most intense games in the rivalry's history, North Carolina defeated Duke 77-74 in the ACC Tournament final at the Omni in Atlanta to secure the Heels' first ACC Tournament title in seven seasons.
The teams had split the two regular season meetings; North Carolina defeating top ranked and then undefeated Duke 91-71 in Cameron in January (a game notable for the infamous "J.R. Can't Reid" placard displayed by some Duke fans) then Duke returned the favor in Chapel Hill in the season finale, knocking off North Carolina 88-86.
Tensions between coaches Dean Smith and Mike Krzyzewski boiled over during Tournament week, stemming from the Reid sign in Durham in January, and by the time the two teams inevitably met in the conference championship, the game had developed the atmosphere of a heavyweight title fight.
North Carolina led for much of the game, including a 39-35 halftime lead, but never could pull away. North Carolina's J.R. Reid, however, outplayed Duke's Naismith Award-finalist and ACC Tournament MVP Danny Ferry.
The game saw an incredible 49 fouls called between the two squads, and Carolina prevailed, but only when Ferry's 3/4 court shot rimmed out as time expired.
March 4, 2007: #8 North Carolina 86, #14 Duke 72
A game people still talk about today:
North Carolina beat Duke at the Dean Smith Center 86-72, completing the season sweep of the Blue Devils. The most memorable part of this game was a combative foul by Gerald Henderson when his elbow contacted Tyler Hansbrough’s nose on a hard foul attempt with 14.5 seconds on the clock and the result of the game clearly determined. The contact broke Hansbrough's nose, drawing blood.
The officials charged Henderson with a combative foul and ejected him from the game. After the foul, Hansbrough jumped up with blood streaming from his nose, but was calmed by his teammate Dewey Burke, before heading to the locker room for medical attention. Since then, both Hansbrough and Henderson have stated the foul was unintentional.
To protect his broken nose, Hansbrough wore a face mask throughout the ACC tournament, and into the second round of the NCAA tournament.