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Top 5 Best Blue Devil Moments Against Rival Tar Heels

March 2, 2017

Duke vs. the University of North Carolina is greatest rivalry is college basketball and some might even argue all of sports. The two teams met earlier this season and the Blue Devils came out with an 86-78 victory over the Tar Heels. They will go out it again to close out regular season play on March 4 at 8:15 p.m. in Chapel Hill. This rivalry is more than a single season or game so lets take a look at the iconic moments in the series history through the eyes of a ‘Dukie’.


5. The Fight

Date: February 4, 1961

Final Score: Duke 81, North Carolina 77

  • This heated rivalry goes back decades. Blue Devil Art Heyman fouled Tar Heel Larry Brown hard under the basket. That’s when Brown started swinging at Heyman. This incident started a bench clearing fight that lasted nearly 10 minutes. Duke went on to win the battle by the score of 81-77.


4. Another UNC Collapse

Date: February 17, 2016

Final Score: Duke 74, North Carolina 73

  • The odds were against Duke early due to the injury of veteran player and defensive expert Matt Jones. UNC Brice Johnson seemed unstoppable down low and the Tar Heels had a 68-60 lead with 7 minutes to go. Duke’s young players went on a roll to bring the game down to one point. With under a minute left Duke’s Grayson Allen sunk two full shots giving Duke the lead at 74-73. With five seconds to go Blue Devil freshman Derryck Thorton blocked UNC’s Joel Berry’s shot to seal the win for Duke.



3. The Greatest Senior Night Display

Date: February 28, 1981

Final Score: Duke 66, North Carolina 65 2OT

  • Duke senior Gene Banks celebrated Senior Night in an elaborate fashion. Before the game he put on a tuxedo and handed out roses to the crowd but, he didn’t stop there. Down two with one second left in regular play Banks’ sunk a shot from the free throw line to send the Blue Devils’ into overtime. Banks wasn’t finished yet! With 19 seconds left in overtime he grabbed a rebound and hit a bank shot to win the game.


2. Thank you Tyus

Date: February 18, 2015

Final Score: Duke 92, North Carolina 90 OT


  • This game was action packed from beginning to end. It featured many lead and momentum changes. Duke had a 13-point lead at home in the first half. That changed in the second half when UNC took the lead by 10 points. The Blue Devils managed to take it to overtime. Thanks to Duke freshman Tyus Jones’ nine points in the final 1:26 of the game. The Blue Devils went on to beat the Tar Heels 92-90. (Okay this one might be a little biased because I am a huge fan of that National Championship team!!)


1. Austin River Silenced the Tar Heels

Date: February 8, 2012

Final Score: Duke 85, North Carolina 84

  • North Carolina had a relaxing 10-point lead against Duke with two minutes remaining in the game while playing at the Dean Smith Center. The Blue Devils connected on multiple shots from behind the arc. Including when UNC’s Tyler Zeller accidently tipped-in a 3-pointer into his own hoop. The Tar Heels had a two point lead with 14 seconds left. On the Blue Devils final possession of the game Austin Rivers silenced the crowed. He drilled a contested 3 over the outreached arms 7ft. Tyler Zeller at the buzzer! Ironically, the Tar Heels’ ram mascot Rameses was in attendance of this game. Due to heartbreak from Rivers’ buzzer beater shot Rameses died two weeks later.










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