Clash of the Titans: Duke Blue Devils vs. Syracuse Orange
So, yeah, that’s me, your newest correspondent for the ‘Cuse. When that pic was taken, the lucky shirt and hat were enough to help propel the Orange to victory against the Pittsburgh Panthers.
Let’s hope they can do the same this Saturday against Duke.
I’m sure that some of you are already familiar with me. I write here and there for what is undeniably the best Syracuse blog in all of the Internet. And (shameless self plug) I’ve recently tried to revive my own version of what I think Syracuse sports looks like. So when I was asked to be a contributor for The Confidential, I figured, what the hell. What’s the worst that could happen?
@johnCassillo no prob with u ppl disagreeing with me that Jim Boeheim deserves a statue-I do RESENT the old &senile remark-CLASSLESS & BUSH!
— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) January 16, 2014
Anyway, enough about me. I hooked you with the catchy headline featuring the words “Duke”, “Syracuse” and “Titans”, so I supposed I’d better deliver the goods.
One unlearned in the ways of college basketball might think that Saturday’s tilt between the Orange and the Blue Devils is merely a contest between teams led by coaches whose names are often misspelled. Those people would be wrong. As it turns out, those guys with the funny names are pretty good coaches. So good, in fact, that by the time they finally hang up their neckties, both with likely set untouchable records for wins in men’s college basketball; Mike Krzyzewski for total wins and Jim Boeheim for wins at a single school.
Pretty neat, huh?
You’d think that with almost 2300 games coached between them, these two icons of college hoops would have faced each other plenty of times. Though, maybe 350+ D1 basketball teams is too large a pool to realistically expect that. What about the NCAA tournament? Surely the smaller pool of 68 would lead them to run into each other often given that both are regulars at the Big Dance. Nope. The all-time series between these two coaches is 1-1, with the lone NCAA tournament game being 13 point Sweet 16 victory by Duke.
So, what’s the point in all this? To show off my Googling skills? To cram this blog post with links so that you fall down the Wikipedia rabbit hole?
No. It’s simply to make us sit back and think about what will happen on Saturday. The expected crowd of 35,446 isn’t the only bit of history that will be made. Never have so many wins been present under the same roof. Given how infrequently these teams have played each other, you might say that it would never happen again. But no. The new-look ACC means that this will happen at least once a year. It’s going to happen at twice this February alone.
No matter what happens, it’s going to be a spectacle of epic proportions. A true clash of the titans. And it’s something that we can look forward to for years to come.
What do you think? Love it? Hate it? Leave your comments below.
Chris Daughtrey is the creator and author of Bleeding Orange. He is a contributor at Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician and at Atlantic Coast Confidential. You can connect with him on Twitter @OrangeBlood 44 or search #OrangeBlood.