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SilkyJ
09-19-2008, 12:55 PM
Cameron checks in at #58.

"Because it's a wonderful lesson that sometimes old-school is still best."

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=caple/080919/venues

JasonEvans
09-19-2008, 12:56 PM
Cameron checks in at #58.

"Because it's a wonderful lesson that sometimes old-school is still best."

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=caple/080919/venues

Ludicrous and absurd for it to be that low. Even if it is the highest ranked college basketball venue, it should be higher.

77devil
09-19-2008, 01:13 PM
Ludicrous and absurd for it to be that low. Even if it is the highest ranked college basketball venue, it should be higher.

Actually its # 3 behind the Palestra and Pauley Pavilion. Hard to argue with that except they should all be higher

COYS
09-19-2008, 02:57 PM
Actually its # 3 behind the Palestra and Pauley Pavilion. Hard to argue with that except they should all be higher

Agreed. There's way too much history in all three of the buildings for them to be that low.

Johnboy
09-19-2008, 03:26 PM
Actually its # 3 behind the Palestra and Pauley Pavilion. Hard to argue with that except they should all be higher

Actually, its # 4, behind Allen Fieldhouse (ranked at #32) the Palestra (#34) and Pauley Pavilion (#44).

. . . he also mentions Laettner hitting "The Shot" at the Spectrum (#38).

ETA: It's a decent list for a dude who doesn't even know how to spell his own last name.

DukeUsul
09-19-2008, 03:38 PM
We got beat by the Mall of America? This list is bogus.

Lord Ash
09-19-2008, 03:58 PM
Crap list.

weezie
09-19-2008, 04:46 PM
Ridiculous list. How "cute" that he tied Michigan & Ohio Stadiums. I hope I come back in my next life as a sports writer so I can waste oodles of time pontificating on nothing and eating chicken strips.

Dawun
09-19-2008, 05:58 PM
Caple hates Duke Basketball. The Editors probably forced him to put Cameron on the list.

SilkyJ
09-19-2008, 06:12 PM
glad to see everyone liked the list so much! :D

Devils Rock
09-19-2008, 07:10 PM
Actually its # 3 behind the Palestra and Pauley Pavilion. Hard to argue with that except they should all be higher

I don't know enough about the Palestra to say one way or the other, but I am probably in the minority when I say that Pauley has no business being on this list at all. O.K. - before I finished writing that last sentence, I went and actually read the criteria for the list and I suppose that under the given criteria it should make the list. However, Pauley in general is just a completely lame venue. The only thing it has going for it is that Wooden won all of his championships there. I guess he could have won those championships inside of any hole in the wall and we would have to give it some love based on the given criteria.

I have two specific incidents by which to slam the ostensibly great Pauley Pavillion:

1) In 1992 Duke played UCLA at Pauley. The teams were ranked number one and two in the country and scalped tickets sold for the highest price ever for a regular season NCAA game. Sounds like the place should be rocking, right? Not! I had the good fortune of having a family friend who was a UCLA bigwig booster and he was kind enough to score me two of his tickets to the game in prime seating with the lifeless crowd (I think Sam Cassell once had some choice words for this same crowd at UNC). In any case, the place was a morgue. I am a die-hard Devil and even I felt mortified when my friend that attended with me stood up and started screaming his lungs out and saying all the worst things imaginable about UCLA. Would I have ever worried about this if I were a UNC fan at Duke (God forbid!). Of course not, because nobody would be able to hear me over the din of Cameron. But at Pauley it felt like we were breaking the law or something by raising our voices above a whisper and raising our posteriors from our seats for even a second. Which brings me to incident number #2.

2) I read this one in the L.A. Times about 5 years ago during the particularly weak Lavin-cheeser years (at least I respect Howland as a coach - the guy's teams actually play hard which could never be said of Lavin's teams). In any case, there was a game at Pauley about 5 years ago in which a fan dared to stand up and start cheering loudly for the home team. This was apparently so foreign to the body of "fans" at large that they begain to complain vociferously and eventually demanded that the offender be removed from the building. And guess what - that's exactly what happened. Not only that, but another fan then stood up in protest of what happened to the first fan and he too was removed for cheering too loudly and blocking out the view of some of Westwood's fine folks. Unbelievable but true. At Duke, they haul you out of there if you don't stand up and cheer.

As a parting remark, I'll say that this shouldn't entirely surprise me. L.A. is a pretty weak sports town in general and the vibe at a UCLA game isn't much differenct from that of a Lakers game: overpriced seats inhabited by entitled "fans" that are more interested in who's got the latest bling than they are in what is happening on the court. If you doubt me, try going to one.

Cameron has forever tainted me against all other venues.

ugadevil
09-19-2008, 07:17 PM
Mall of America? Gold's Gym? Permian High School? Those are important?

devilirium
09-19-2008, 08:57 PM
"At Duke, they haul you out of there if you don't stand up and cheer."

I think the students and band certainly buy into this, and it makes for great hyperbole, but if you've watched a game from the upper tier in Cameron then you can find plenty of folks who are like the people in Pauley.

rockymtn devil
09-19-2008, 08:57 PM
glad to see everyone liked the list so much! :D

I really enjoyed reading it. Sure, it's ridiculous, but it's a provocation. The point is to get people (on message boards?) talking and, in most cases, complaining that their venue wasn't higher.

Of course Cameron is high on our lists. To Duke fans its the most important venue. But we can all figure out criteria that puts certain venues higher on the list than others.

kinghoops
09-19-2008, 09:39 PM
just to take this list with a grain of salt, he list the old durham athletic park(dap) at number 35!!! wow!!! i really loved the old park, but come on, just take a look at some of the baseball venues it is ahead of..

dodger stadium,bush stadium, and candlestick park.

anyway, im sure most observers would come up with cameron and allen field house as 1 and 1a in college basketball venues

CameronBornAndBred
09-19-2008, 10:37 PM
Cameron got beat by the old DAP, at #35. All because Bull Durham was filmed there. Woopdie-doo...

77devil
09-20-2008, 12:23 AM
Actually, its # 4, behind Allen Fieldhouse (ranked at #32) the Palestra (#34) and Pauley Pavilion (#44).

. . . he also mentions Laettner hitting "The Shot" at the Spectrum (#38).

ETA: It's a decent list for a dude who doesn't even know how to spell his own last name.

Good catch. But the Spectrum at # 38 totally undermines any credibility of this list. The place always has been a dump. The roof blew off when it first opened.

Olympic Fan
09-20-2008, 10:38 AM
I can't accept a list that has Cameron listed behind Pauley Pavilion and Allen Field House.

Just a couple of points:

-- Wooden didn't win ALL his national titles at Pauley. The facility opened in June 1965, after he had already won championships in 1964 and 1965. He did win eight titles there in the next 10 years. But his first two titles came when UCLA played in the Men's Gym (known as the BO Barn). BTW, the fund-raising for Pauley was headed by H.R. Haldeman, the Nixonian Chief of Staff who would later spend time in prison.

Pauley is designed on the same pattern as Cameron (which is in itself based on the Palestra) -- a deck of permanent upper deck seats with bleachers at the lower levels. It's larger than Cameron (12,000-plus seats), but if you've been to games there, you know the atmosphere is very average -- it can be good for big games, but it's often half-empty. Visually, it offers nothing ... (BTW, the largest crowd in Pauley history was the 1997 Duke visit).

-- Allen Field House is also a relatively late addition to the sports scene. I would concede that Kansas' basketball history is up there with anybody's -- even with Kentucky. But most of that history was before Allen. The arena went up in 1955, after Kansas won its first national title. Since it's been in use, Duke has achieved more on the basketball court.

Allen is a dump -- at least it was when I visited in the late 1980s. They may have spruced it up. It does have a great atmosphere -- much better than Pauley, very much like Duke.

-- The Spectrum is a joke ... it's like the Vet in that it was dump even when it was new. Despite Laettner's shot, it has very little college basketball history. Okay, they played the 1976 and 1981 Final Fours there, along with the 1992 East Regionals. Both Temple and Villanova briefly used the Spectrum as a home-away from home. But that's about it.

... the 76ers may have won one title there ... I'm not a hockey guy, maybe the Flyers made it a great NHL venue. But for college basketball? Very second rate.

The one COLLEGE BASKETBALL facility that I might rate ahead of Cameron is the Palestra. Not only is it older than Cameron, but Cameron's design was based on the Philly arena -- for all the legend about Eddie Cameron sketching the design of Cameron on a matchup, the arena was designed by Julian Abele, a black architect working for a Philadelphia design firm, where he clearly undertook to reproduce and improve on the Philly design.

Although on Penn's campus, the Palestra was home to all the members of the Philadelphia Big Five (Penn, Temple, St. Joseph's, LaSalle and Villanova) until the early 1980s, when Villanova joined the Big East and essentially broke up in the Big Five. During the 30s, 40s and 50s, those were all national powers. Could you imagine Duke, UNC, NC State, Wake and Davidson (in its prime) all sharing one arena?

In contrast to the Spectrum and its three NCAA Tournament events, the Palestra has hosted the NCAA Tournament in 20 seperate years. Duke's first NCAA game (a one-point loss to Villanova in 1955) was in the Palestra.

Great atmosphere ... great history ... great teams. It's the granddaddy to college basketball's great arenas (clearly the design theme runs Palestra-Cameron-Reynolds-Pauley).

DGood
09-20-2008, 01:04 PM
I hope I come back in my next life as a sports writer so I can waste oodles of time pontificating on nothing and eating chicken strips.

Haha so true.

Wander
09-20-2008, 01:12 PM
Baseball completely overrated as it usually is on these lists...

A-Tex Devil
09-20-2008, 08:54 PM
Permian High School? Those are important?

Yes. It is. Above Cameron? eh, not sure about that. But a high school game there is just different than everywhere else. And they are good again this year which is awesome!!

ugadevil
09-20-2008, 09:49 PM
Yes. It is. Above Cameron? eh, not sure about that. But a high school game there is just different than everywhere else. And they are good again this year which is awesome!!

I didn't think the people of Permian High School even liked the fact that they got so much attention from the Friday Night Lights story? The author of the book didn't exactly portray them in the best light. I'm surprised ESPN didn't give some love to the high school football in Valdosta, Georgia. After all, they were the ones that named it TITLETOWN, USA!

BobbyFan
09-21-2008, 04:23 PM
I stopped reading upon seeing Camden Yards at #2.

SharkD
09-21-2008, 05:39 PM
I'm not a NASCAR fan, but the mere fact that the list omits the Occoneechee Speedway (http://www.enoriver.org/eno/parks/occspdwy.htm), the only existing track from the inaugural 1949 season, in favor of modern superspeedways, ESPN HQ, Gold's Gym and high-school gyms is nuts.

Then there's the notion of the DAP (the one and only) ranking significantly ahead of Cameron. Whatever he's smoking, it's probably pretty good stuff.

throatybeard
09-21-2008, 07:12 PM
I think something a lot of y'all are missing is that the list is "most important," not "most awesome and groovy." Now, you could still quibble with where things on the list, but I'll submit that Cameron isn't that "important," or not more than 58th.

--Cameron doesn't host postseason games.* The pro venues do, and college FB stadiums like OSU and Michigan host what might as well be given the one-n-done nature of November in college FB.

* - OK, a few WBB 1R and 2R games

--Cameron doesn't host neutral site games of any importance.

--Cameron isn't a paradigm-changer of any importance. Yes, it was big in 1941. But it didn't result in tons of arenas like it being built, Reynolds notwithstanding. This is why Camden Yards is so high. It changed how you build stadia.

--Cameron isn't a huge cultural touchstone outside sports, like several of the buildings listed, including old DAP. When Cameron appears in a great movie, call me. The article cites DAP as a touchstone in the revival of Minor league Baseball.

--The fans on this board have a distorted idea of the cachet of College BB in the American sportscape. At the absolute highest, MBB is 5th to NFL, MLB, NBA and college FB. There have actually been times in the last quarter century when women's figure skating was higher. Maybe the NHL during Gretzky and Lemieux. And more people watch the Winter and Summer Olympics than games in Cameron. Tiger Woods has made golf more relevant than Clemson at Duke.

--Basketball arenas have a smaller impact in terms of the number of attendees that baseball, football, and multipurpose venues. Arugably, you could use this to argue against Permian, but HS games in TX are better attended than 3/5 of Duke MBB games.

--Concerts, I guess. Cameron used to host a few important concerts, but it doesn't continue to, like say MSG.

Cameron is fantastic. But our fans have a really inflated notion of its "importance." To anyone outside this school, about two semi-important things a year happen at Cameron, the UNC MBB home game, and maybe one other.

Inonehand
09-21-2008, 08:55 PM
Cameron got beat by the old DAP, at #35. All because Bull Durham was filmed there. Woopdie-doo...

That's not the reason he stated...because of the movie he said it kicked off the rapid growth of interest in minor league baseball...and he's right. The Durham Bulls franchise itslef went from being worth a couple hundred thousand bucks to well over a million a year after the movie. After that movie, many more minor league teams dropped their affiliate names (Red Sox, Angels, etc.) and started coming up with neat, regionally important nicknames and marketed more heavily. While I wish the stadium would be demolished instead of wasting Durham taxpayer money to keep it up and going, it was very important. Other than Duke being a great basketball program and it plays in Cameron, what makes it more important than the DAP?

Devils Rock
09-22-2008, 02:37 PM
"At Duke, they haul you out of there if you don't stand up and cheer."

I think the students and band certainly buy into this, and it makes for great hyperbole, but if you've watched a game from the upper tier in Cameron then you can find plenty of folks who are like the people in Pauley.


Actually, Devilirium, you are right. My Cameron-colored glasses ommited the fact that the upper level of Cameron is pretty tame. However, what is scary about Pauley is that the entire place is like that. It's possible and maybe even probable that it's gotten much better since Howland took over, but I don't have any reason to go to the place so I don't know if it's improved or not.

CameronBornAndBred
09-23-2008, 06:31 PM
Other than Duke being a great basketball program and it plays in Cameron, what makes it more important than the DAP?

I'd say it's more important if for no other reason it's one of the icons of college basketball. Between Rupp Arena, Cameron, Pauley Pavilion, and the Dean Dome, no other venues are so recognized for one sport. Each is synonymous with college basketball. Cameron is brought into the living rooms of millions of Americans every home game, and often during the broadcast you will see them run a little side story on it's history. If not on the building itself, then the fans inside. Name one other college sports team that the fans are recognized by the building they occupy. There probably are a few, but none I believe stand out so much as the Cameron Crazies. So until the old DAP reaches such icon status and is recognized for more than one past year's event, I'd say Cameron reigns king at least in Durham importance.

DU82
09-23-2008, 09:31 PM
Baseball completely overrated as it usually is on these lists...

Baseball has the history, and for the older generations still around, was essentially the only game in town up until 1958 (Giants-Colts.) It is the game most "handed down" from father to son. (I'm not trying to be sexist here, just realistic, even though it's my mother with the picture of Ebbets Field in the den, not my father.) That's why there's so many baseball parks on the list, as they are more identified with their teams (even the new ones) than the latest brand new basketball arena (Time Warner Cable Arena, anyone?)

With many/most of the sportswriters in big cities, that reduces the interest in college sports in favor of pro sports as well.

I just returned from the last game in Yankee Stadium, and it was an event that touched a lot of people. It's not just the games, but the family connections and memories. (and 26 championships.) I know the article was written because the Stadium was closing, but it still ranks number one. It was not the first concrete/steel ballpark, but it was the first majestic huge (baseball) stadium (in the nation's largest city) and I would challenge anybody to come up with five that would top it. In baseball, the two older parks still standing, Fenway is a reminant of the older, smaller single deck ballparks and Wrigley wasn't even built for the Cubs, they moved in after the Federal League folded. For the purposes of the guy's list, Camden Yards, which created the new trend in more and more in stadiums (carried over to all other sports, including college) should rank up in the top ten, if not number two.