Currently, one of my favorite Internet memes is the “Haters Gon Hate” reply given pretty much anytime someone doesn’t like an event’s outcome. Bitching about the winners is the act of a hater, and with that in mind, allow the following pictorial to further demonstrate why I’m considered a Duke hater — and as such, it wouldn’t be prudent of me to not hate, given the outcome of the Duke/Butler final game.
(Why, oh, why, dear Basketball Gods, did you not allow Hayward’s final shot fall? Whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy?!?!?!) Now that I got that Jonathan Davis moment out of my system, let’s delve further into why hating Duke is just so awesome:
This, my friends, is Duke basketball’s attempt to “hip their program up and sell it to the young folk,” if I may borrow from David Cross. It’s a not a bad video, although, it seems to be a subconscious acknowledgment from the program that they understand the public perception of Duke outside of ESPN and Durham. They also understand they are second in popularity when it comes to being the favorite program of the state they reside in. That designation obviously belongs to the National Champions from the campus down the street. The video also highlights Duke’s NBA-friendly approach, while using folks like Grant Hill and Shane Battier as examples.
Oh, there’s some floor-slapping going on as well — would you expect anything less?
Of course, this could all be a recruiting pitch to mega-recruit, John Wall, a player every coach in America seems to covet. Even Coach K.
A couple of weeks ago, a video of Corey Maggette traveling six times in one play hit the tubes, helping reinforce just how poorly the traveling rule is enforced. Thanks to Duke’s game against Wake Forest this weekend, we now know where Maggette learned to walk with the ball with such flair: Duke University. In the above video, we have freshman guard Elliot Williams displaying his “How to Walk in a Basketball Game and Get Away With It” skills he undoubtedly learned during his limited tenure with Coach K. However, Williams actually two-ups Maggette by getting away with what looks like 12 extra steps.
Maggette, for his efforts, only got away with six.
Maybe there’s something in the way Coach K teaches the switching of pivot feet so it hypnotizes the officials into not seeing it, because no other explanation seems to fit.
I admit, I was skeptical when I saw the Duke Blue Devils ranked in the preseason top 5, but it appears as if my reservations were, if anything, premature. Granted, it’s still too early to tell much of anything about the state of the college basketball world a week-plus into the season, but it does look like Duke deserved the attention.
Last night, during their game against the Southern Illinois Salukis, the Blue Devils put on an offensive display that included two nasty dunks, one from Gerald Henderson and the other from Nolan Smith. If this is the type of offensive attack we can expect from Duke all season, they might actually be able to challenge North Carolina in the ACC and perhaps get past the Sweet 16, something the Blue Devils haven’t done since the 2003-04 season.
Say what you will about Duke’s head basketball coach because it’s probably already been said, be it good or bad. The media loves him and opposing fans hate him. Such is the life of a successful coach from a school that’s disliked so much, it causes people to do this. Of course, the one they call “Coach K” might have something to do with the level of hatred directed at the Duke Blue Devils, but that’s besides the point.
For one, it’s hard for even the most seasoned hater to deny his place in the college basketball world.
With that in mind and because tonight, Duke kicks off the 2008/09 college basketball season with the Coaches vs Cancer benefit against Presbyterian, here’s a little gallery of just some of the incredible facial expressions by the one, the only — Mike Krzyzewski.
There are times pictures speak louder than words. These are some of them. I think they were all taken during a Duke/North Carolina game — or perhaps a tax audit: