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frozenmail.net February 19, 2018


Despite all the talent, Duke looked overmatched in loss to Carolina

09 February 2018, 09:26 | Randolph Howard

Battle of the Blue Bloods: New-look Duke takes on UNC

UNC's Maye thriving in leading role entering Duke game

But frankly, the hype is warranted.

Doctors suggest that if you're feeling sick or have any flu-like symptoms that you just stay home and watch the two teams battle it out on TV.

A 14-0 run later, the next month is suddenly looking different.

If you do make it to Chapel Hill, or any other watch party, make sure you cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze.

Carolina exposed those flaws, beating Duke down the floor on made baskets and locking down the interior to the point that the Blue Devils attempted 13 of their final 15 field goal attempts from behind the arc. No more. With Louisville's FBI- and NCAA-related demise, that's no longer even a discussion.

Duke and North Carolina have each struggled at times this season with committing turnovers.

Tip-off in Chapel Hill as 8 p.m. and more than 20,000 fans are expected to pack the Dean Dome for the game. He's shooting about 52 percent and almost 49 percent from 3-point range as a stretch-the-floor threat.

Trevon Duval had a rough night, to say the least for Duke as poor decision making and bad shot selection from the freshman really hurt the Blue Devils.

Duke (19-4, 7-3 ACC) is coming off an 81-77 loss to St. John's on Saturday, it's second in the last three games.

This is, of course, overstating things a bit.

"The start of the second half, they played great and we were terrible", Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. Following the departure of (ACC Player of the Year) Justin Jackson, Kennedy Meeks, Isaiah Hicks, and Tony Bradley, Carolina was left with a bare cupboard on the interior.

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Four UNC starters scored 15 points or more, led by an incredible shooting night from junior guard Kenny Williams. Let's take a deeper look at how each team scores its points.

North Carolina led by as many as 10 and saw Duke get to within 74-71 late, but the Tar Heels did just enough to hang on.

I did a bit of research into the recent history of this rivalry.

UNC will be back in action on Saturday afternoon when they travel to take on NC State. In those six games, UNC went 1-5. -Wise (10-13, 8-9 MEC) earned a second straight win with a victory over the Fighting Falcons (17-6, 13-4). But we're close to it.

After North Carolina won the 2017 National Title, it became apparent that the make-up of the 2018 team would vastly differ from vintage Tar Heel squads.

Before the game, he jumped around the locker room and tried not to put too much pressure on himself. The Tar Heels are now 17-7 overall, 6-5 in the ACC and 12-10-1 against the spread.

Like the St. John's game, Duke was unable to consistently grab defensive rebounds in the second half, allowing Carolina to grab 20 offensive rebounds.

Unfortunately for Duke, that's about as good as it got.

He inserted a massive lineup that featured 6-foot-11 Wendell Carter, 6-foot-11 Marques Bolden and 6-foot-10 Marvin Bagley all on the floor at once.

Hard to top that, but here are a few more stats to know for Duke-UNC Part 1. But what we have instead is something even more intriguing: For North Carolina, a loss could knock the defending champions out of the Top 25 for the first time all season.

It's even more unsafe when the other team's freshmen abandon the plan given to them by their Hall of Fame coach and begin taking matters into their own hands.



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