Blog Entry

Dear Gary (on the Duke-North Carolina rivalry)

Posted on: February 13, 2009 3:59 pm

Here's Friday's Dear Gary ...

Dear Gary: I understand that the Duke-North Carolina rivalry gets press, and that is one of the reasons it is hyped. But what about another notable rivalry in Kansas-Missouri? That rivalry predates the Civil War and actually is historically significant. Why doesn't the press hype it a little more?
-- Matt

The reality is this: Duke-UNC is the most-hyped rivalry in college basketball because it's the best -- and only nationally relevant -- rivalry in college basketball. It's not some grand conspiracy, Matt. It's treated a certain way because it's the only rivalry that matters to fan bases from coast to coast. Meanwhile, Kansas-Missouri -- as great as it might be -- is a regional rivalry, just like Marquette-Wisconsin, Kentucky-Louisville, Xavier-Cincinnati, whatever. Those matter in those regions every year, and nationally some years depending on the quality of the teams. But Duke-UNC matters every year. So if the question is why does that rivalry always get national attention, the answer is because it's the only rivalry worthy of always getting national attention.

It's like I've said before, the reason people say the Beatles are the best band ever is because they are the best ever. Likewise, the reason people say Duke-North Carolina is the best rivalry in college basketball is because it is the best rivalry in college basketball, and I hope that clears this up for you.


Since: Nov 6, 2008
Posted on: February 13, 2009 5:51 pm

Dear Gary (on the Duke-North Carolina rivalry)

Here is the big issue that is not being talked about:  Nationally people only start paying attention to College Basketball after the Super Bowl.  Hence, this is the only rival that gets played out toward the end of the season (ie in conference).  Also, ESPN hypes the games b/c it is on their airwaves.  There is something weird to me about playing 3 times a season that takes away from the rivalry to me personally.

I prefer the once a year type of rivalry like a Ky-UofL, Wisconsin-Marquette anytime as a College Basketball fan.  But you can't help but know that Duke and UNC will be ranked every year.

Since: Apr 2, 2008
Posted on: February 13, 2009 5:20 pm

Dear Gary (on the Duke-North Carolina rivalry)

I've been a Kansas fan for life. The Kansas-Mizzery game is a great game in the midwest, but doesnt have or deserve anywhere near the Duke-NC hype. Gary is absolutlely correct.The Duke-NC is the best college basketball game as far as rivalry in the nation.

One of the Kansas-Mizzoo games each year is usually a big Monday or Tuesday ESPN match-up, nationally televised, and receives all the hype the game deserves. This Matt may be a Mizzery fan and wishes it meant more nationally, because the Kansas game is usually their biggest game of the year.

The Duke-NC game is almost always more significant nationally as well as in their respective conference.

Since: Dec 28, 2006
Posted on: February 13, 2009 4:14 pm

Dear Gary (on the Duke-North Carolina rivalry)

Nice explanation Gary.  Before moving back to North Carolina I spent several years living in Florida and many of my friends there could simply not understand the level of intensity of the Duke-Carolina rivalry and I use to explain it to them like this:  Take the University of Florida and Florida State University and move them both into the same town so that they are only separated by 8 miles.  This analogy can apply to any other regional rivalry such as Michigan-Ohio State or even Kansas-Missouri.

Since: Feb 13, 2007
Posted on: February 13, 2009 4:13 pm

Dear Gary (on the Duke-North Carolina rivalry)

I don't agree with this on a number of different levels. It's only the most nationally relevent rivalry because the media tells us it is, but that's nonsense.

You want a nationally relevent game? Try the Superbowl. Man-law: You must have an opinion on who will win the Superbowl. Now that's relevent. I could care less who wins the Duke/UNC match-ups.

And that's not the only rivalry game that gets national coverage every year. Indiana/Kentucky is featured nationally, every single year, on a network you might have heard of: CBS.

Me? I like all rivalry games, love the Mizzou/Kansas rivalry game, I'm a little Kansas-biased. But what I don't believe is that any single one of them is better than the other. Why would it be? I'm an Indiana fan in Minnesota, why would I care so much more about an ACC rivalry game than another? Truth be told, I don't, and I'm not buying, from anyone, that I should.

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