Fans around the world of college sports have been expressing concerns about the direction of amateur athletics for years. The elements that usually seem to come under fire the most are the transfer portal and NIL collectives that have been established. While those things certainly have their negatives, it doesn't seem to be the thing that could cost college sports fans.
All week, the focus around the final Saturday of the regular season was on Coach K's legacy ahead of the final home game of his legendary career as he and Duke welcomed the Tar Heels to Durham. As a result, Hubert Davis and the Tar Heels were given no chance in his first trip to Cameron Indoor. However, thanks to what may have been the team's most complete game of the season, the Tar Heels walked in and pulled one of the most unexpected upsets in college basketball this season, handing Coach K a loss in his final game at home on a night where they honored him afterward.
Saturday night, Duke's men's basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski will take to Cameron Indoor Stadium for the final times as the team head basketball coach when they welcome the rival North Carolina Tar Heels. This is a game that many expect the Blue Devils to show out in with it being Krzyzewski's last game and with the way that this same team beat the Tar Heels earlier in the season in Chapel Hill.
The Tar Heels entered Saturday's meeting with the Duke Blue Devils in Dean E. Smith Center coming off of a four-game winning streak, but in Coach K's final game in Chapel Hill, the team simply got embarrassed. The Tar Heels never led and were down as much as 28 points late in the second half and never got within single digits of the lead after the 16:20 mark of the first half.
The Tar Heels will head to Louisville on Tuesday night as they look to continue the momentum that they built off a three-game homestand that they swept last week in the Dean Dome. The hope is that this can be the turning point for a season where the Tar Heels have had a lot of inconsistencies especially on the road and has left many fans frustrated after similar issues to close the Roy Williams era, even with the fact that this is Hubert Davis' first season as a head coach at the varsity level.
The Tar Heel basketball entered last Monday meeting with the Virginia Tech Hokies needing a win about as bad as any team in college basketball as they had fallen squarely on to the bubble. While it may not have been the prettiest win, that was the starting point for a 3-0 week which included a 100-80 win over NC State on Saturday that was desperately needed for this Tar Heel team to avoid falling completely out of the tournament field.
The Tar Heel football team in 2021 was riddled with inconsistencies and the same looks as if it can be said for the Tar Heel basketball team so far this season. Following arguably the best all-around performance of the season against Boston College, the Tar Heels were picked apart on Wednesday night by a less than stellar Notre Dame, especially on the defensive end of the floor. The Fighting Irish shot 47.5% (29-61) overall on the night and 41.9% (13-31) from beyond the arc in what was another questionable effort defensively from the Tar Heel that left fans with something to desire.
It was a big win for North Carolina last night in the Smith Center, as they toppled #24 Michigan 72-51, to earn their first signature win under first-year head coach Hubert Davis. A main reason for the win was Caleb Love's impressive performance highlighted by a game-best 22 points, which were aided by a couple of thunderous dunks. During the off-season, the biggest question about this Tar Heel team was the development of their backcourt, which is talented, yet still inexperienced. Seven games into the 2021-22 campaign, it is obvious that Love has taken that next step, necessary for Carolina to return to the top of the college basketball pecking order. Earleir today on Wilson & Norfleet, Brendan Marks, beat reporter for The Athletic joined to talk about the Tar Heels, and when asked specifically about Love he replied: "When he's engaged, it's hard to think about other point guards in the country being better than him. UNC is at its best, when he is at his best." During the 18 years of Carolina Basketball under Roy Williams, whenever Carolina had elite point guard play, they were usually among the better teams in college basketball. It appears that is hear to stay under Hubert Davis. The Tar Heels return to action on Sunday, in Atlanta when they'll take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at 3 PM, on ESPN.
The 2021-22 college basketball season tipped off last night and was highlighted by the Duke-Kentucky matchup in Madison Square Garden, where the Blue Devils topped the Wildcats 79-71 in a highly contested battle between two blue bloods of the sport. Earlier today, DeShaun Tate, the host of Tate's Take podcast joined Wilson & Norfleet to tell you why the Blue Devils have the potential to be a national title contender, in what will be Coach K's final Duke squad. His reasoning for that is the play of freshmen Paolo Banchero and Trevor Keels saying: "It makes me feel like a national championship is on the way for Duke if I'm being. It just has that feel to it. It has that vibe. It has that energy"
On Monday's edition of the Clubhouse, and Stan recapped what was an unusual matchup between Duke and North Carolina over the weekend as both teams were not ranked for the first time in a matchup in almost 60 years, and it was with no fans inside Cameron Indoor Stadium.