Bob Verga averaged 22 ppg from 1965-67. Vote for Bob!
Last of the preliminary round polls!!!!
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Bob Verga averaged 22 ppg from 1965-67. Vote for Bob!
United States Navy (Retired)
I will probably be the only one, but I gave a sentimental vote to Ricky Price. So much potential, and whenever he made a great play Dickie V would scream "Ricky Price, where have you BEEN!!!" I think he had some confidence issues. Great upside coming out of HS, but never translated to the collegiate level. Don't think it was for lack of effort, just a mental thing, IMO. And he did hit a buzzer beater once, (forgot who it was against), so he did have his 15 minutes. Plus, I hated watching him ride the pine his senior year. Probably should have redshirted given all the talent. But he accepted his role as benchwarmer (sort of like me) and cheered the team on with gusto.
Ricky's ability to elevate on his sto-and-pop jumper was freaky. He had almost unlimited potential.
That last-second victory over Maryland was not his only moment to shine. He had some huge ACC games as a soph in 1996, the year Duke began to rise back from the 1995 disaster. I recall him scoring something like 30 points in a late-season game against Virginia and he had a big game against UNC at the end of the year, only to barely miss the last-second jumper that could have won the game.
In the wake of that soph season, he appeared to be on the verge of a truly legendary career. There are not many sophs who average more than 14 ppg and the ones who do almost always go on to be All-America calliber players. But it never happened for Ricky. His scoring tumbled to just 9 ppg as a junior and he simply was not hitting shots the way he used to. His 3-point percentage fell from almost 40% as a soph to 29% as a junior. Then the cheating scandal happened (in Computer Science, if memory serves) and his career was done. As others have said, to his credit, he never complained or made trouble for Duke even as his pro aspirations fell from NBA-lottery pick to maybe-I-can-earn-money-in-Slovenia. A good kid, for sure.
So sad. If you'd asked me in 1996, I would have guaranteed that Ricky Price would someday be among my al-time favorite Dukies. But it was not to be and the academic scandal really puts a capper on my decision not to vote for him in this poll.
--Jason "this final group is fairly weak, IMO, I've got three I like but am not sure I am even going to vote for a 4th" Evans
I guess the one-year thing is really holding him back, but I hope Luol Deng gets more support. Kid was nothing but class and had work. If his family had let him stick around even one more year, I think he'd be getting 75%+ of the vote. his reasons for leaving were noble too and he has done nothing but continue to show himself as a fine person with his stellar play in the pros (my hatred for the Hawks management can direclty be traced to their decision to take Josh Childress over Luol Deng in the draft).
Luol is one of my all-time faves, for sure!
--Jason "I guess it is hard to vote for a kid who was only here one year" Evans
Thanks to Jumbo and Jason for the good history lesson regarding Ricky Price. I knew he was academically ineligible the first semester of his senior season, but didn't know about the cheating scandal. I'm guessing the two were connected somehow? (Didn't discover the BBS until late in the '98 season, although I was reading the Headlines since '97 and the "Ping's Take" era.) Hope he's doing well with his Duke degree wherever he is.
You're probably right about Deng, Jason. I considered voting for him, and probably would have if he had played two seasons. Even though his Dad more or less made the decision for him to go pro after one season, still... as a fan I didn't really get the chance to fully "connect" and watch him grow as a Duke player, especially the usual significant improvement which talented players make from frosh to soph.
So, I am more than a little surprised that it appears he will not even advance and may finish like 6th in this poll.
--Jason "that whole, only-played-one-year thing is really a big deal, I guess" Evans
Ozzie, your paradigm of optimism!
Go To Hell carolina, Go To Hell!
9F 9F 9F
I voted for Jason and Nate, and Nate was kinda marginal I guess. Very much a role player, although very clutch.
Verga and Spanarkel are obviously huge names at Duke, but V was way before my time and I wasn't paying much attention when S was playing. The one guy I from that era who made an impression on me despite not following the team very much was Giminski.
Oh, and Nate was a badI'm a real wanker for saying this.I'm a real wanker for saying this.I'm a real wanker for saying this.I'm a real wanker for saying this.I'm a real wanker for saying this..
Andre Dawkins: “People ask me if I can still shoot, and I ask them if they can still breathe. That’s kind of the same thing.”
I used to watch Verga score 30+ in the summer Jersey Shore league when I was back in NJ, before I started following Duke - and Spanarkel was a Jersey High School favorite before then too....
I am going to close this poll now. There may be room for more folks to vote, but we are over 100 votes and it would take a deluge of Deng votes from folks who then did not also vote for Bob Verga to really change anything in this poll. I just don't see that happening so we are going to wrap up the preliminary round and move on to the one-on-one matchups!!
--Jason "thanks everybody... now comes the really tough choices!!" Evans