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The Confidential’s 2016 Football Over-Under: Duke

Last year, the Confidential unveiled over-unders for each ACC school.  For Duke, the over-under was set at 7.5 regular season wins.  Ultimately, the Blue Devils racked up 7 regular season wins, adding a bowl victory over Indiana to conclude the season.  But now it is on to 2016.  The Confidential sets the over-under for Duke at 6.5 regular season wins.

Here is the schedule for 2016, courtesy of a great football site:

9/3 Sat vs. North Carolina Central
9/10 Sat vs. *Wake Forest
9/17 Sat @ Northwestern
9/24 Sat @ Notre Dame
10/1 Sat vs. *Virginia
10/8 Sat vs. Army
10/14 Fri @ *Louisville
10/29 Sat @ *Georgia Tech
11/5 Sat vs. *Virginia Tech
11/10 Thu vs. *North Carolina
11/19 Sat @ *Pittsburgh
11/26 Sat @ *Miami (Florida)

Very likely wins: North Carolina Central, Wake Forest, Virginia, Army

Very likely losses: Notre Dame, Northwestern

Verdict: Duke followed up a few good seasons with an 8-win season to keep momentum going.  This year, Duke has a rough two-game stretch in Chicagoland against Notre Dame and Northwestern.  Beyond that, North Carolina Central and Army should be wins.  The conference schedule features a tough trip to Louisville, as well as a home game against Wake Forest.  Thus, it will all come down to the Coastal games.  It is not hard to see Duke match last year’s win total.  However, Duke’s specific slate is somewhat tough, with trips to Louisville, Georgia Tech, Pittsburgh, and Miami.  In contrast, the home game slate is North Carolina (local anyway), Wake Forest (other North Carolina foe), Virginia, and Virginia Tech.  With a tough schedule, not going to project improvement.  In fact, the Confidential goes with 6.5 regular season wins.

What do you think?  Will Duke go over or under 6.5 regular season wins?


As Always, Duke Gets Away With It

There is no debate that Coach K is a great coach.  Let’s just put that off to the side.

There is no debate that Duke is a great academic institution.  Let’s put that off to the side also.

There is no debate that Duke has had and continues to have elite basketball athletes.  Let’s put that off to the side.

The question that begs is why it is that Duke can do no wrong in the eyes of the NCAA and the ACC?  The latest example of this is a tripping issue involving Grayson Allen.

First, let’s look at the video:

Oh, wait.  That was a different tripping video involving Grayson Allen.

Here is the video:

As Oliver Wendell Holmes famously remarked: “Even a dog knows the difference between being kicked and being stumbled over.”  And people have a bit more intuition than dogs…. and “instant replay.”  Quite obviously, whatever academic credentials Allen has, they are not backed up by even a shred of common sense.  Instant replay has been around for a generation (or two) and will show what happened.

Or decency.  You can see him raise in arms trying to convince the referees that he had not done what he actually did.  So not only did he commit the act, he tried to get himself out of the inevitable punishment.  If this were a trial, it would not be hard to find Allen “guilty” of both the act and having the requisite intent.  (And that is not counting the repeated tripping attempts and that tripping is not particularly manly in its own regard).

But why shouldn’t Allen be this way–there is no punishment when it comes to Duke.  Coach K is not about to punish Allen (which should be held against the mantra that Coach K is such a “great guy”).  And the ACC and NCAA are not going to punish Duke or Allen.  The school, coach, and players are, essentially, immune.

Think that this is hyperbole, let’s consider the other instances where Duke was NOT punished for conduct that would have led to a punishment of non-Duke institutions:

  • Duke was allowed to say “we were not aware” with respect to Corey Maggette.  Note how Jim Boeheim did not get away with that same explanation and nor will Rick Pitino.
  • Duke was allowed to get away with Lance Thomas putting $30,000 cash down on jewelry and obtaining $70,000 in credit on a “how were we supposed to know” basis, even though the NCAA had JUST punished Memphis and John Calipari for a similar failure to be omniscient.
  • Actually, this article lists a bunch of similar reasons to question the narrative regarding Duke basketball and Coach K.  Check it out.

In a world where Bobby Bowden, Joe Paterno, and Jim Boeheim can have wins vacated, it remains perplexing that Coach K has skated despite the above transgressions.  And his refusal to do what the ACC would not with respect to Allen should be yet another black eye on his record.  That is still a very good record, but not the perfect record that the narrative wants you to believe.

Perhaps Coach K will state in 2022 that he should have suspended Allen.  But recognizing your mistake years later–i.e. long after the acknowledgement will change anything material the situation–is no different than Allen crying innocent when the videotape proves otherwise.  Too little, too late.  And the trend also undermines the defense.

The bottom line is that… as always, Duke gets away with it.  And the fact that this is not surprising is disappointing.

ACC Suspends Refs for Violating Pro-Duke Agenda!

(Coach K’s Lap ACC Headquarters): To the surprise of anyone who has ever watched a Duke University game in any sport, the referees at the end of Saturday’s Duke-Miami football game inexplicably made several decisions that failed to benefit Duke.  What is not surprising–of course–is that Atlantic Coast Conference has acted quickly by  suspending those referees.

There are a number of Internet sources that have attempted to document the pro-Duke agenda:

And that is just from the first two pages of one Internet search.  Admittedly, unless you are a Duke fan, you have always suspected that Duke got favorable calls.  In any event, who can forget Jim Boeheim losing his suit coat over the conclusion to a Duke-Syracuse game?

Well, if you had any doubts, the ACC has acted swiftly in suspending the referees from the Duke-Miami game for two weeks.  ACC commissioner John Swofford had this to say:

The Atlantic Coast Conference prides itself on academics, athletics, and ensuring that Duke University receive as many favorable calls and outcomes as possible.  The referees in the Duke-Miami game flawlessly implemented that agenda in the final minutes of the game with a variety of calls against Miami, but then inexcusably failed to do so on the final play.  To the extent that this group believed, erroneously, that Duke must be given an even playing field in football, they have been disabused of such a notion and punished appropriately.

As it stands now, the scoreboard for pro-Duke and anti-Duke officiating outcome resides squarely at 62-1.  The ACC’s ruling will certainly have a chilling impact on calls against Duke for the foreseeable future, so look for that margin to increase.

The Football Over-Unders for 2015: Duke

This article is another in a series of articles in which the Confidential opines regarding the over/under for football wins in 2015.  We’ll take a cursory look at the schedule and determine what we think is the point where folks will struggle to select “over” or “under.”  We hope people will share their comments as to “why” they are going over/under.  If you disagree with our over/under choice, of course, feel free to let us know too.  The next team up: Duke.  We are going with an over/under of 7.5 regular season wins.

  1. September 3 @ Tulane
  2. September 12 vs North Carolina Central
  3. September 19 vs Northwestern
  4. September 26 vs Georgia Tech
  5. October 3 vs Boston College
  6. October 10 @ Army
  7. October 24 @ Virginia Tech
  8. October 31  vs Miami
  9. November 7 @ North Carolina
  10. November 14 vs Pittsburgh
  11. November 21 @ Virginia
  12. November 28 @ Wake Forest

Likely losses: Who knows?  Have to be some in here, right?

Likely wins: Tulane, NC Central, Army

Summary:  Duke rivals North Carolina State for schedule ease, but similarly goes on the road for two of its foes–Tulane and Army.  This, of course, is sandwiched around four home games.  The Confidential has no idea how Duke will do this year.  None.  Home losses to Northwestern, Georgia Tech, Miami, and Pitt could happen… or not.  Road losses to Virginia Tech, North Carolina, and Virginia could happen.  Or not.  Heck, even Wake Forest could beat Duke–especially with Wake hosting the game.  Or not.  Kind of absurd that Duke avoids all of Florida State, Clemson, and Louisville in crossover games.  Seriously, anything could happen here.  0-12.  12-0.  Ultimately, however, the Confidential goes with a a default over-under of 7.5 wins.

What do you think?  Over or under?  Let us know.

Prior discussions: Florida State Georgia Tech Wake Forest Pitt Virginia Virginia Tech Louisville Miami Notre Dame NC State

The Confidential’s All School Teams Poll: Ranking The Top

UPDATE: Final Voting in Poll:

  1. North Carolina 41.03%
  2. Louisville 36.32%
  3. Syracuse 16.24%
  4. Duke 3.47%
  5. NC State 1.28%
  6. Ga Tech and ND .85%

Thanks to all for voting!  Congrats to the Tar Heels and their fans!

The Confidential has spent several weeks determining the best 12-player teams that could be put together for each ACC school.  Here is a list of those teams.  Yesterday’s task was to determine which school’s team is the worst.  Today’s task is to determine which school has the best team!


Center: Christian Laettner, Mike Gminski

Power Forward: Shane Battier, Danny Ferry

Small Forward:  Grant Hill, Art Heyman

Shooting Guard: JJ Reddick, Johnny Dawkins, Dick Groat

Point Guard: Bobby Hurley, Jason Williams, Tommy Amaker

Georgia Tech:

Center: John Salley, Matt Geiger

Power Forward: Malcolm Mackey, Rich Yunkus

Small Forward: Dennis Scott, Matt Harping

Shooting Guard: Stephon Marbury, Tom Hammonds, Roger Kaiser

Point Guard: Mark Price, Kenny Anderson, Jarrett Jack


Center: Wes Unseld, Pervis Ellison

Power Forward: Rodney McCray, Charlie Tyra

Small Forward: Derek Smith, Junior Bridgeman

Shooting Guard: Darrell Griffith, Butch Beard, Peyton Siva

Point Guard: Milt Wagner, DeJuan Wheat, Russ Smith

North Carolina:

Center: Tyler Hansbrough, Bob McAdoo

Power Forward: James Worthy, Sam Perkins

Small Forward: Lennie Rosenbluth, Billy Cunningham, Antawn Jamison

Shooting Guard: Michael Jordan, Walter Davis, Charlie Scott

Point Guard: Phil Ford, Kenny Smith

North Carolina State:

Center: Tom Burleson, Ronnie Shavlik

Power Forward: David Thompson, Tom Guggliota, Thurl Bailey

Small Forward: Lorenzo Charles, TJ Warren

Shooting Guard: Derek Whittenburg, Julius Hodge

Point Guard: Sidney Lowe, Chris Corchani, Monty Towe

Notre Dame:

Center: Bill Laimbeer, Troy Murphy

Power Forward: Tom Hawkins, Pat Garrity, John Shumate

Small Forward: Adrian Dantley, Orlando Woolidge, Kelly Tripucka

Shooting Guard: Austin Carr, John Paxson

Point Guard: David Rivers, Chris Thomas


Center:  Rony Seikaly, Roosevelt Bouie

Power Forward: Derrick Coleman, Louis Orr

Small Forward: Carmelo Anthony, John Wallace, Rafael Addison

Shooting Guard: Dave Bing, Lawrence Moten, Gerry McNamara

Point Guard: Pearl Washington, Sherman Douglas

The Confidential’s All-Time Duke Team

Suppose you had to play one game… for all the marbles… and you could use your time machine (or TARDIS) to put together a team of 12 players at their peaks.  Who would you pick?  Well, the Confidential does not know who YOU would pick.  But here is who the Confidential would pick for Duke:

Read more…

Congrats to Duke and Coach K…

As a Syracuse fan and now an ACC fan, I have always had a loyalty to Jim Boeheim and a healthy degree of healthy, spirited dislike for Coach K and Duke.  I am not saying that Duke is not a great program.  I would be hard-pressed to make an argument that any other coach in college basketball is superior to Coach K.  1,000 wins and (now) five championships speak for themselves.  Still, to me, Duke is the New York Yankees of college basketball… when you meet a non-alum fan living outside the region, you cannot help but think “fair weather.”   And it is beyond debate that Duke seemingly “gets the calls” as much as any team in any sport.  Somewhere along the way, Dick Vitale converted from a basketball knowledge savant to a Coach K agent and Duke promoter, which grew intolerable.  So, if any praise for Duke and Coach K comes from this writer, it is a brand new feeling.  But here it goes… props to Coach K and Duke for the national championship this year.

Read more…

Syracuse Thrashes Duke in Lacrosse, 19-7

While most folks are concentrating on March Madness, the Syracuse Orange faithful have turned to mens lacrosse–where, other than perhaps Johns Hopkins–nobody has more tradition.  But recent years have been fairly lean for the Orange.  2015, however, is off to a great start.  So a lot of eyes were on yesterday’s matchup between the Orange and the two-time reigning champion Duke Blue Devils.  And Syracuse dominated, winning 19-7 over #4 Duke in the Carrier Dome.

Read more…

Washington Monthly – National University Rankings


The Washington Monthly has posted its annual list of National University Rankings. Unlike the US News and World Report, this ranking system one is based on the University’s contributions to the public good in the three broad categories: Social Mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students), Research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and PhDs), and Service (encouraging students to give something back to their country).


Let’s see how the ACC teams fared: Read more…

The ACC Laff-a-Lympics

A favorite Saturday morning show growing up (before College football, natch) was Hannah-Barbera’s “Laff-a-Lympics” which featured a cadre of popular HB characters competing as teams in zany sporting competitions, races, and scavenger hunts.

The Confidential started to wonder…if the ACC were in the “Laff-a-lympics”, which characters would best represent the schools?

Here are just some of the matches that we could come up with:  Read more…

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