By Fred Cromartie, Ed.D. |
Famed college basketball analyst Jeff Goodman said it himself: “UNC should build a statue of Hubert Davis.”
On Saturday evening, one of the greatest rivalries in all of college basketball finally made its NCAA Tournament debut. It is hard to believe that it was the first time the Duke Blue Devils and North Carolina Tar Heels met in the Final Four. Well the 70,000 that packed the Caesars Superdome will tell you that for a first it was an instant classic. The game exceeded the expectations of Carolina fans and probably Duke fans, even though the Blue Devils lost 81-77. The loss was a dramatic end to the epic coaching career of Mike Krzyewski.
The epic classic game feature 18 lead changes, 12 ties and clutch shot-making thoughout. Hubert Davis, the first year Tar Heels coach planted his mark on his own legacy and Tar Heels basketball folklore. With the win, Coach Davis and the squad earn forever-bragging rights over their longtime foe, but he also handed Krzyzewski a loss in his last home game at Cameron Indoor Stadium, in early March. The epitome of spoiler.
Goodman stated, “I said this sort of facetiously, but maybe not — they should build a statue of Hubert Davis outside the Dean Dome,” Stadium hoops analyst Jeff Goodman told the Reiter Than You show on Monday. “He just had the two biggest wins maybe in the history of the Carolina program. Probably going overboard here, but he ended Coach K’s career in the national semifinals, and beat Coach K on Coach K night in Durham. How can you be any better than that?…
Goodman followed up “Whatever Duke does — they could win every regular season game — Carolina fans are just going to be like, ‘We beat you on the biggest stage, and we beat you on Coach K night’… You know what I compare it too. It was like when the Red Sox beat the Yankees [in 2004]… Beating the Yankees in the ALCS was bigger than winning the World Series… Six weeks ago, I was questioning, as much as anybody, whether Hubert Davis was the right guy for the job…”
Should they win the Championship game Monday night the suggestion and discussion gets more fuel to build that statue.
The Hubert Davis, Tar Heels hoops conversation between Goodman and Reiter can be accessed in the link provided
Dr. Fred Cromartie is the Director of Doctoral Studies at the United States Sports Academy.