Sunday, March 09, 2008


Living in Detroit these last eleven years, I've noticed a distinct lack of intense college basketball rivalry within Michigan. For one thing, there's no private university of Duke's size and stature to combat any of the state schools and, besides, we have the Pistons for high-energy men's basketball.

But as as double alum of UNC-Chapel Hill (BA and MSLS), I do keep my TV eyes on the UNC-Duke rivalry back there in North Carolina's Tobacco Road country. It's always intense, but last night's game between the #1 Tar Heels and #6 Duke was a particularly fast-paced brawl with a lot of blocked shots. Still, despite Duke's disciplined play and a tight game for most of the second half, UNC pulled ahead in the last three minutes, winning 76-68.

This is a fun rivalry. Unlike the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Duke and Carolina are not trying to occupy the same land. They just want to outscore each other and seize the #1 spot in the ACC and, if possible, win the NCAA championship.

The UNC-Duke rivalry pits Tar Heel fans -- me, for instance, and Barb France, Linda Stine, Bill Caughlin, Jim Carleton, Lettie Randall, and ex-girfriends from the past -- against Duke fans like Don France, Jamie France, Kenny Randall, Evan Farris, Joe McGeary, and an ex-wife. Keeps things interesting, to be sure. Last night's show began with a poignant moment of silence for recently slain Carolina student body president Eve Carson, which also kept the game -- and rivalry -- in perspective.

Today's Rune: Breakthrough.

Go Tar Heels!

1 comment:

Charles Gramlich said...

I love a good rivalry game.