Duke vs. MSU - Who Do You Pull For?

Submitted by Everyone Murders on March 27th, 2013 at 9:26 AM

In addition to Friday's tilt with Michigan playing Kansas, we'll all be keeping an eye on the MSU vs. Duke game.  For many of us it's a classic meteor game, with the upside being that one of them has to lose, but I thought the board might like to sound off on who to pull for.

I've pretty quickly concluded that I'll pinch my nose and pull for MSU.  Partially for Big Ten pride, partially because I have a modicum of respect for the job Izzo's done (even if much of it was done via low-hanging fruit from the Ed Martin bushwa), and part of it because I know some pretty decent MSU fans.  But mostly because I have an almost pathological dislike for Duke and the bulk of their fans.

I first came to dislike Duke because of Christian Laettner.  I read a story in SI way back when where Cherokee Parks came to Laettner's dorm room on a visit, and Laettner cold-cocked him - and followed it up with screaming at Parks about how tough you need to be to play for Duke.  At the time I thought "this guy Laettner sounds like a total jackass" and nothing I've seen since changes that view.  A talented jackass to be sure, but a jackass.

And then there's Krzyzewski.  When I was a kid, I bought into the "he's a class act and does things the 'right way'" image that's hard to get away from even these days.  As I got older, I learned to dislike the cult built around him - it's an almost pre-Sandusky Paterno cult of personality.  He's been successful, but seems like a weasel most times I see him.  From his whinging about fans rushing the court after losing to VA, to his talking about recruiting kids with "character" but somehow overlooking recruiting areas like Detroit (Shane Battier doesn't count - Detroit Country Day sure isn't Detroit!), to defending thuggish moves from the likes of Gerald Henderson, to the American Express ad, and on and on.

And the Duke fans are generally wretched.  Anyone who jaws about "Michigan Arrogance" or "Domer Arrogance" likely has not seen the pinnacle of douchebaggery.  Whether they chanted about NC State's player's grandmother's death or not - the fact that it was believable to many spoke volumes. 

(I have some respect for a few Duke alumns - Grant Hill, Tommy Amaker, and several on the academic side of the equation.  But if Coach K. and Laettner are going to be your poster children, well - that's your poster.) 

So yeah - MSU fans may have a large juggalo contingent, wear a bunch of Axe, burn upholstered furniture at bad times, and paint numbers on their chest representing days since U-M won in basketball right before they lose on national TV.  But I'll be grudgingly pulling for them on Friday.

Who are you pulling for, and why?


Maize and Blue…

March 27th, 2013 at 10:09 AM ^

Ever since they went on their 4 game win streak in football and their obnoxious fans came out of the woodwork I can't bring myself to cheer for them in anything.  Throw in what they did to property in AA after the FB game two years ago and they can go to hell with ND!


March 27th, 2013 at 10:13 AM ^

I want duke to win. Every advancement state makes in this tournament is used directly against us in recruiting. I only want state to win when they play Ohio. Our real rival.


March 27th, 2013 at 10:29 AM ^

I'll root for the B1G's, except for Indiana.  Crean's childish display a few weeks ago makes Indiana my one remaing exception to B1G support.  Wiscy, an insult to basketball, was the other.


March 27th, 2013 at 10:31 AM ^

My childhood rooting interests were Sparty except when they played Michigan.  So even though I loathe the current state of Spartan fandom, I will be rooting for them and the B1G.  I want an all B1G final four.  That is the absolute best thing for the league and my team.  Plus it will be the ultimate shutthehellup to Barkley.

An Angelo's Addict

March 27th, 2013 at 10:32 AM ^

MSU, I recently went to a duke game. If you think their fans are anything but obnoxious assholes then you need to get to cameron stadium. I heard more trash talking and insults screamed in one game then I've heard from all the Michigan football games I've been to


March 27th, 2013 at 10:36 AM ^

I respect Izzo's program despite wanting Michigan to beat him 100-0 every time they play.  And it would be good for the league if they won...I see no upside to Duke winning, especially given Michigan's current recruiting battle with them for Devin Booker (not that one game is likely to make much of a difference).   

UM Fan in Nashville

March 27th, 2013 at 10:38 AM ^

I live in SEC country, so there would be no better feeling than to have 4 B1G teams in the Elite 8.   Especially when they were whining about not getting the respect they "deserved."

I can dream that we would have an all B1G Final Four with UofM winning it all against OSU, but, not sure that's going to happen.

As long as we go further than MSU, I'm happy.


March 27th, 2013 at 10:40 AM ^

Duke. Even though I met my wife here at UofM, she was born at the Duke hospital, and her entire family are Duke fans (her bro went there and her dad worked there).


March 27th, 2013 at 10:40 AM ^

Tough one for me. On the one hand - Fuck Duke, go B1G even if it is MSU. On the other hand - I have Duke beating MSU in my bracket. Thinking I'll just drink heavily and root against both teams.


March 27th, 2013 at 10:45 AM ^

Coach K IS a class act and will go down as one the greatest coaches in any sport. I'm a huge Michigan fan but I believe Coach K deserves the respect he gets.


March 27th, 2013 at 10:48 AM ^

Rooting for Duke. MSU fans can be more annoying given out rivalry and we also compete more with them in recruiting. It is more beneficial for UM for MSU to lose than Duke.


March 27th, 2013 at 10:54 AM ^

Hate Duke with a passion and every ounce of my being but cannot deal with the State's incessant whining about everything under the freaking sun. Plus Dantonio will have that stupid smirk if they win so suck it Sparty.


March 27th, 2013 at 11:03 AM ^

I've never even met a Duke fan, so I will not argue with the ops logic. I actually riot for Duke almost every game that they aren't playing us. That's just from watching them about twice every week for my whole life. As for the other fan dislike leading to personal interest in a game. I completely agree with that. I have never met a duke fan, but have to deal with staee fans daily. I don't want to deal with the celebration of a national title from them on Saturday if they make the elite 8.


March 27th, 2013 at 11:03 AM ^

one of the two schools I despise will lose and the other will get beat by Louisville in the next game..SO..both get beat....IF MSU wins its good for the conference ..If they lose and UM advances well..WE had the better season...win win


March 27th, 2013 at 11:04 AM ^

was epoch:

"That's why I wear my new brand -- Christian Soldiers. They've got that unique air cushion sole that allows me to kick the wind out of my opponent without damaging my arch support. And best of all, they've got an invisible tread, so you can step on your opponent without leaving a print. Great for putting your best foot forward. Look for Christian Soldiers whenever you've got rugged marching orders. And remember, kids: There's nothing wrong with playing dirty, just as long as you're playing to win."

Funny quote, but I never did like the guy.

Fuck Duke! Go...Green?


March 27th, 2013 at 11:10 AM ^

rooting for Michigan State's fanbase to emerge from the game with sound basketball insight and good-naturedness, which most of my Duke alum friends have.

But that's probably even less likely than a meteor. 


March 27th, 2013 at 11:49 AM ^

See 1992 Men's Basketball Championship, among a bevy of other things.


Willis Ward

March 27th, 2013 at 11:57 AM ^

those of us who are old enough to remember the early to mid 90s have plenty of reasons to hate Duke.  My favorite basketball memory (outside of 89, 92, and 93, obvs) is rushing the court after knocking them off in Crisler in 97.  We had beaten OSU to go to the Rose the week before, and Charles would win the Heisman that night.  Good times.


March 27th, 2013 at 1:59 PM ^

Such as? Every team has their fair share of twats so using that is purely cop out in my view. It wasn't so much the Duke hate as much as it was the MSU love from you lot. I would never root for a rival over an OOC team.


March 27th, 2013 at 8:47 PM ^

Losing several big-time games to the same basketball team (and its arrogant coach) is plenty of reason to hate them. If that doesn't make sense, the concept is beyond explanation to you. Also I wouldn't either, but some people want Michigan's conference to be stoutly represented in games that matter...just a difference of opinion.


March 27th, 2013 at 11:49 AM ^

I'm still rooting for a Big 10 Final Four.  But, if MSU loses, the consolation is . . . MSU LOSES!(Just as I have been rooting for all Big 10 teams in the postseason, but I cackled with glee that the only one to lose in the Round of 64 was Wisconsin).  If MSU loses, then there's no question that we root for Louisville to take care of Duke to get to the final four.


Willis Ward

March 27th, 2013 at 11:54 AM ^

The only reason to root against MSU here would be if we hadn't closed the gap.  We have.  What's good for the big ten is good for us.  Duke hoops is as bad as ND football.  I can never pull for them in anything.


March 27th, 2013 at 11:56 AM ^

Seriously?  Someone with a user name of Everyone Murders is critiquing Coach K's supposed poor persona?  Christian Laettner is no more the poster child for Duke as is Grant Hill or any of the many other players who have come through Coach K's program.  I understand the dislike for Duke and a certain persona that it projects, but conjuring images of Jerry Sandusky is way out of bounds and says more about the poster than anything.  I thought this board wants intelligent conversation?

Everyone Murders

March 27th, 2013 at 6:21 PM ^

I see you created a new account to reply.  Since you took the trouble to do that, here are three quick points in response:

  • Re-read the original post, and if you still honestly think that I was "conjuring images" of Jerry Sandusky by referring to Paterno's pre-scandal image, you should have someone else read it for you. Because you're not good at reading.
  • CBS shows Laettner's winning shot in the Kentucky game every freaking March, repeatedly.  It was an iconic shot (and really a fantastic play - personality of the shooter notwithstanding).  That play, among others, helped to make Laettner one of the faces of Duke, and he is thus a poster child for your program. 
  • "Everyone Murders" is a loose reference to Terrelle Pryor's absurd justification for supporting Michael Vick in the wake of Vick's dogfighting scandal.  Sorry if it offends you.* 

Welcome to the board, anyway.  It can be a fun place to exchange ideas, especially for those with a passion for University of Michigan sports.

*By which I mean I'm not sorry at all. To be extra clear, the name is a jab at OSU, and I don't really think "everyone kills people, murders people, steals from you, steals from me".


March 28th, 2013 at 9:35 AM ^

I did create a new account to respond because I was disappointed to read that a Michigan man needs to conjure images of Sandusky to smear someone else.  There are any number of iconic coaches you could have chosen to compare to Coach K, but you chose to compare him to Sandusky/Paterno.  So, yes, I do think you were conjuring those images.  Also, Coach K can't help that CBS shows Laetner's winning shot against Kentucky.  And I don't think that makes Laetner the poster child for Duke any more than Grant Hill or Shane Battier are poster children for Duke.  I think you just don't like Duke, which is fine but no need to throw the Sandusky thing around at someone like Coach K.  It's better to be credible with your criticisms.  And, yes, I'm very passionate about Michigan sports and have been for a very long time.  

Everyone Murders

March 29th, 2013 at 8:45 AM ^

You keep on writing that I'm comparing Coach Krzyzewski to Jerry Sandusky.  I'm not, and I didn't.  I compared the cult of personality Coach Krzyzewski enjoys to the cult of personality that Paterno enjoyed before the big scandal.

Your assertion that I "chose to compare [ Krzyzewski] to Sandusky/Paterno" is false.  This isn't a matter of interpretation.  It's a matter of your lack of reading comprehension.  Your replies are making you sound shrill, and my guess is that you're a decent person who's above that sort of tripe.

We're not going to get to "yes" on Coach  Krzyzewski.  I think he's a weasel, you think he's the bee's knees, a builder of men, etc.  Fine.

But stop with the falsities.  Please.