PDA

View Full Version : Pre Coach K Players



Uncle Drew
12-23-2007, 10:12 PM
At the risk of revealing the age of some of the people who might reply to this I have a question for some of the "old timers" out there. I started watching Duke basketball in 1978 and my all time favorite player will always be Mike Gminski. As stated in a previous post I think he was probably the last truly dominant center at Duke. And though Duke has opted for a FFGGG system under Coach K for whatever reasons I think he would fit well into Coach K's past and present schemes. I also think he would be a very good player even today if for no other reason than being so fundamentally sound and able to draw fouls on opposing players.


I'd like some feedback on other pre Coach K players I never saw play from those who did. If they were in their Duke prime do you guys think they would be good / great players today? Do you think they would be the type of player Coach K likes to recruit? I've been told NCSU's David Thompson would be just as dominant in todays college game if not more so and I'd like opinions on the following past Duke greats. Please also if you could identify the type game each player had if you remember and their major strengths.

1. Bob Verga

2. Dick Groat

3. Jeff Mullins

4. Art Heyman

5. Mike Lewis

6. Randy Denton

7. Jim Spanarkel*

8. Gene Banks*


*I saw Spanarkel and Banks play and yes I realize Banks played a year under Coach K.

Bob Green
12-23-2007, 10:38 PM
I've been watching Duke basketball for longer than I can remember (literally) because I started off watching sitting on my father's knee. However, starting with the 1967-68 season, when I was eight years old, I have solid memories of the players and games.

Mike Lewis definitely would've been a great player under Coach K. And I believe it is very important to interject at this point that Coach Vic Bubas was every bit as talented and respected in the 1960s as Coach K is today.

In 1968 Mike Lewis was 3rd Team All-America and averaged 21.7 ppg. He made 55% of his field goal attempts and 75.1% of his free throws (Statistics on all Duke players are available at http://www.dukeupdate.com).

A statistic that doesn't show up in the box scores is that Mike Lewis was very adept at avoiding foul trouble. If my sometimes fragile memory is correct, the infamous Fred Lind game is the only game that Mike Lewis fouled out of in his career at Duke. If I'm wrong on this point, one of the really old timers will correct me.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-23-2007, 11:39 PM
At the risk of revealing the age of some of the people who might reply to this I have a question for some of the "old timers" out there. I started watching Duke basketball in 1978 and my all time favorite player will always be Mike Gminski. As stated in a previous post I think he was probably the last truly dominant center at Duke. And though Duke has opted for a FFGGG system under Coach K for whatever reasons I think he would fit well into Coach K's past and present schemes. I also think he would be a very good player even today if for no other reason than being so fundamentally sound and able to draw fouls on opposing players.


I'd like some feedback on other pre Coach K players I never saw play from those who did. If they were in their Duke prime do you guys think they would be good / great players today? Do you think they would be the type of player Coach K likes to recruit? I've been told NCSU's David Thompson would be just as dominant in todays college game if not more so and I'd like opinions on the following past Duke greats. Please also if you could identify the type game each player had if you remember and their major strengths.

1. Bob Verga

2. Dick Groat

3. Jeff Mullins

4. Art Heyman

5. Mike Lewis

6. Randy Denton

7. Jim Spanarkel*

8. Gene Banks*


*I saw Spanarkel and Banks play and yes I realize Banks played a year under Coach K.

I saw all of these guys play except for Dick Groat. Duke basketball became a truly national presence with the arrival of Art Heyman. He could play inside or outside. He was fearless driving to the basket during an era when the game was so physical that serious fights broke out on the court with amazing frequency. (The "great fight" was in February 1961 during the Duke - Carolina game in Durham. This fight and how it was handled provided the fuel for the intensity of the rivalry between Duke and Carolina.) When Mullins and Heyman were on the court at the same time they provided a strong combination few other teams could beat.. savy outside shooting, strength under the basket and strong drives often against as many as three defenders.

I remember Gene Banks as the guy who could make the shots when we were down near the end of a game. Perhaps his most memorable such performance was his last game in Cameron. Prior to the game, Gene came out on the court with an armful of roses. As he walked around the perimeter of the court, he threw the roses out one by one to the crowd. The game was expected to be won by Carolina and they were leading near the end of the game. But Gene refused to accept that and kept shooting and and hitting his shots .... and...miraculously Duke won. Gene's confidence radiated from him every time he went out to play. He was exciting to watch and was quite a showman.

It was exciting to watch a team coached by Vic Bubas. He influenced so much in college basketball that other coaches have copied what he did..... one example was how he divided up the country among his staff for recruiting assignments. He also encouraged our cheerleaders to develop choreography to popular songs to add to the game's atmosphere. Probably the best example which is still used today is "Devil with the Blue Dress On,' choreographed by Emily Meeker, Class of '65. Bubas is an NC State graduate who played under Everett Case.... a great basketball mind.

If you'd like to know more about some of the great players and read interesting stories about them, you should read Blue Blood by Art Chansky. You'll learn about many events on and off the court which explain all sorts of things.

As for David Thompson, yes, he would be dominant today! His leap would still be as remarkable today as it was years ago. Were he playing today, I think he'd be a master of the three point shot.

Uncle Drew
12-24-2007, 12:16 AM
My father born 1922 and my brother born 1955 have both told me how great a coach Bubas was. And I had to give a lot of props to Coach K for recognizing his Establishment of Duke as a national power a few years back. From the pictures of him I've seen of the man, I found your story about incorporation of popular songs to the cheer routines and band extremely interesting. From the looks of the guy I'd of guessed he wouldn't want to hear anything other than songs from the Big Band era in the 1940's. (I'm not knocking that era, I actually have quite a few Glenn Miller songs on my iPod.) His ability to change with the times and yet maintain his fundamental teachings is probably one of the things that made him the coach he was. (Just like the new offense tis year shows Coach K isn't a stick in the mud.) But on a side note most of todays popular songs would NOT make good renditions for the band or cheerleaders when they play songs like, "I'm In Love With A Stripper" and "Sensual Seduction" on the radio. (That stripper song would NOT be especially appropriate at Lacrosse games!)


I've got a few Mullins and Heyman NBA cards from way back in the day and I have always wanted to run into them at a game and perhaps get them autographed. (I have Mike Lewis, Verga etc. and even a few Groat baseball cards.) But truth be told any of those guys could walk right past me and I wouldn't know who they were. Does anyone know what those guys do now and if they would autograph cards sent to them? Additionally I am a very good, well trained artist. Many times over the years I had thought about drawing / painting a montage of past great Duke players in action and perhaps entitling it "foundations" or something like that. My hope would be to donate the item to Duke and / or the Duke Children's Hospital to make prints of and sell. Ideally if they could get a few of the past greats to autograph and sell / auction for charity that would be even better. But then pictures of those players from back in the day are hard to come across (to use to draw from) and most all are copyrighted which would get me sued for using.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-24-2007, 07:57 AM
My father born 1922 and my brother born 1955 have both told me how great a coach Bubas was. And I had to give a lot of props to Coach K for recognizing his Establishment of Duke as a national power a few years back. From the pictures of him I've seen of the man, I found your story about incorporation of popular songs to the cheer routines and band extremely interesting. From the looks of the guy I'd of guessed he wouldn't want to hear anything other than songs from the Big Band era in the 1940's. (I'm not knocking that era, I actually have quite a few Glenn Miller songs on my iPod.) His ability to change with the times and yet maintain his fundamental teachings is probably one of the things that made him the coach he was. (Just like the new offense tis year shows Coach K isn't a stick in the mud.) But on a side note most of todays popular songs would NOT make good renditions for the band or cheerleaders when they play songs like, "I'm In Love With A Stripper" and "Sensual Seduction" on the radio. (That stripper song would NOT be especially appropriate at Lacrosse games!)


I've got a few Mullins and Heyman NBA cards from way back in the day and I have always wanted to run into them at a game and perhaps get them autographed. (I have Mike Lewis, Verga etc. and even a few Groat baseball cards.) But truth be told any of those guys could walk right past me and I wouldn't know who they were. Does anyone know what those guys do now and if they would autograph cards sent to them? Additionally I am a very good, well trained artist. Many times over the years I had thought about drawing / painting a montage of past great Duke players in action and perhaps entitling it "foundations" or something like that. My hope would be to donate the item to Duke and / or the Duke Children's Hospital to make prints of and sell. Ideally if they could get a few of the past greats to autograph and sell / auction for charity that would be even better. But then pictures of those players from back in the day are hard to come across (to use to draw from) and most all are copyrighted which would get me sued for using.

If you're a Duke graduate and registered to use the online alumni directory, you can locate just about any of the greats we've been talking about. Dick Groat is back home and has worked for the Pitt sports radio network for 29 years. (He was shown on the sidelines of the recent game in Madison Square Garden.) Art Heyman's back in the NYC area. His relationship with Duke has been up and down...... consider the controversy which lasted for YEARS over whether his jersey should be retired. I'm not sure where Jeff Mullins has retired following his coaching at UNC-Charlotte. Mike Lewis is in the Winston-Salem area. If can't hurt to give your idea a try!

Indoor66
12-24-2007, 08:01 AM
I've been watching Duke basketball for longer than I can remember (literally) because I started off watching sitting on my father's knee. However, starting with the 1967-68 season, when I was eight years old, I have solid memories of the players and games.

Mike Lewis definitely would've been a great player under Coach K. And I believe it is very important to interject at this point that Coach Vic Bubas was every bit as talented and respected in the 1960s as Coach K is today.

In 1968 Mike Lewis was 3rd Team All-America and averaged 21.7 ppg. He made 55% of his field goal attempts and 75.1% of his free throws (Statistics on all Duke players are available at http://www.dukeupdate.com).

A statistic that doesn't show up in the box scores is that Mike Lewis was very adept at avoiding foul trouble. If my sometimes fragile memory is correct, the infamous Fred Lind game is the only game that Mike Lewis fouled out of in his career at Duke. If I'm wrong on this point, one of the really old timers will correct me.

Another Mike Lewis fact is that he was 6'6½" or 6'7" max tall. He averaged 12.5 rebounds for his career (65-66-11.0, 66-67-12.3, 67-68-14.4). He also had a remarkably quick, over the head two hand release of the rebound to start the fast break. He rarely dunked - preferring using the board for close-in scoring, but in a crowd he would go up and use a two hand stuff. He was a mountain of a man, growing up in Missoula, MT. His father had a lumber mill and Mike worked there tossing logs, etc. A Paul Bunyan type physique.

gw67
12-24-2007, 08:43 AM
As someone near retirement age, I saw all but Groat play but Dick's statement that he was a better basketball player than baseball player is good enough for me. I saw him play for the Pirates and he was an outstanding all around player. If he was a better basketball player, he would be a star in any era.

Mullins and Verga would easily transition to today's game and would be All Americans, IMO. Both were very bouncy and were outstanding shooters. Verga not only got high on his jump shot but arched his back and extended his arm. His jump shot ranked up there with Thompson and West as one that just wasn't blocked. Mullins was a better all around player and would have played the wing for Coach K. He had great timing on rebounds.

Art Heyman was an average shooter but was a strong, relentless player who got his points and rebounds no matter the defense put up against him. He was also a wonderful passer and an emotional leader of the team. At 6-5, I suspect that he would have more difficulty playing inside against the taller players in today's game but he would still be an outstanding player, IMO.

As others have stated, Lewis would be a very good player in today's game.

My memories of Denton are more fuzzy. He was a strong inside player and had good mobility. At 6-10, he could play down low in any era.

Spanarkel was a 6-5 guard whose game was a lot like Scheyer's. Jim did not run or jump well but he was the best player on a team of very good players who were more athletic than he. Give me a player who can shoot, dribble, pass, catch and who understands the game. That was Jim. He was also pretty strong and had good timing which helped on defense and for rebounding. He would be a very good player in today's game.

gw67

DukeU3x
12-24-2007, 09:24 AM
These are my memories, and like all memories, subject to change in the face of facts or a few brews.

1. Bob Verga—My earliest real memory of a Duke player is Verga rhythmically bringing the ball up court, his hair bouncing in time with the dribbles. He had a solid shot and was strong on defense. As I remember, he was bigger than Wojo, as good a ball handler, and a better shooter.

2. Dick Groat—Only saw him play as a Pirate, but if he was a better hoopster than infielder, he could play anytime.

3. Jeff Mullins—Sadly, I started watching Duke during the loss to the Wildcats in the ’66 final four, so I can’t comment directly. I remember the seniors talking about him when I got to campus and it was as if he were a god.

4. Art Heyman—If you’re a #1 overall NBA pick, you can play in any era. Again, only remembering comments from long ago, fans said he was tough and tenacious; the folks from that other place said he was mean and dirty. Hence, I’ll always love him.

5. Mike Lewis—The “Missoula Mountain” was/is, for me, the archetypal center. When down low, he owned everything around him. He was a presence on defense and a force on offense.

6. Randy Denton—One of the last of Bubas recruits. He was neither as great as Lewis nor Shelden, but he was a center (not a big forward) who could play today, but might not start. Think of a bigger Danny Ferry without the finesse.

7. Jim Spanarkel--A great guard, he played Michelangelo during our basketball renaissance. A better defender and distributor than JJ, but without the same quality shot. A great team leader on that wonderful ’78 finals team, he was truly admired by everyone on campus.

8. Gene Banks—He always went full out, played hard on both O and D, could work well inside or outside the paint, and won games. Seems like he was banging bodies or the floor all the time. Think of 95% of Shelden. About a decade after our graduation, on a Sunday morning in May a rad-lib classmate and I were talking about Gene’s questionable academic record. She surprised me by saying she had no problem with him receiving a degree, because he did many great things for the school. (Hunh, I remember him as well and fondly as I remember her and come to think of it, they were both great.)

Thanks for the invitation to Nostalgiaville.

RPS
12-24-2007, 09:28 AM
I'd like some feedback on other pre Coach K players I never saw play from those who did.You forgot to mention Jack Marin and Tate Armstrong. Both were terrific players in their day who would be terrific today. In fact, with the three-ball, they might even be better.

dukepsy1963
12-24-2007, 09:52 AM
I saw these guys in their prime. (As student in early 60's) Both were sensational and definitely would be outstanding players today. Heyman was aggressive and always had a "school-yard" sense of where the ball was. Mullins' was smooth and a terrific ball handler.
Together, they were quite a force. And both could shoot. Both were go-to guys. Their drives to the basket were memorable.

The rivalry between Heyman and Larry Brown at UNC was palpable and altercations did occur. I remember one ugly night in CIS when a fight broke out between them. Let's hope that sort of thing between UNC and Duke doesn't happen again.

But would they stack up today?........without question!!!!

dukepsy1963
12-24-2007, 10:15 AM
With all due respect to my Duke players, David Thompson was the most exciting player I ever saw. I saw him in action a number of times (including the time he went up and came straight down on his head...we thought he had broken his neck).

You cannot believe how high he could jump! I am probably wrong, but I think he must may have "invented" the alley oop. You could throw the ball near him and he would soar up and put it in. Incredible!!! There is a classic bit of footage of a dunking contest between him and Dr. J. Someone should find that and put it up.

Thompson would be great anytime!!!!

Ggallagher
12-24-2007, 10:35 AM
I was at Duke while Verga, Lewis and Denton played - just missed Mullins and Heyman. I have no doubt that Verga and Lewis would be dominant players now - I didn't get to see Randy Denton play as much, so I can't comment on him.
One of my strong memories from those teams came out of the yearbook. It was an image of Mike Lewis "skyhooking" in a rebound. For the benefit of those who never got to see him play, I've attached that photo from the yearbook.
Glen Gallagher

sagegrouse
12-24-2007, 10:41 AM
Jeff, who was my classmate and has served as our class president from time to time, was an incredibly good player, not only in college but in the NBA. He played forward at 6-4; he was a good outside shooter and could run the court (like all the Bubas players); he was also silky smooth around the basket, making shots from incredible angles.

Against Villanova in the 64 regional finals at Reynolds Coliseum, he had a huge game, including sinking a half-court jumper at the end of the first half.

He was a role player on the Olympic team in Tokyo and then had a long run (11 years or so) in the NBA at shooting guard. After a couple of years of adjustment (take heart, JJ), Jeff was a fixture in the backcourt for the Warriors, earning an NBA championship in his last year. He also made a couple of all-star teams (possibly the first Duke player to do so). He was recognized for his quickness. One vignette is from the NBA 1-on-1 contest in the early 70s (one player from each team). He went all the way to the semifinals before losing to size-23 Bob Lanier, who was the eventual winner.

Would Mullins have been a star on Coach K's teams? You bet!

sagegrouse
'One guy not on your list who would have been an impact player today is Jack Marin, a slick and quick small forward, who also played in the pros forever.'

Atldukie79
12-24-2007, 11:08 AM
Ok, here is my speculation on how these past stars would have done today...and if or how they might fit into K's picture.
First, would K have recruited them? I suspect most of them would have passed the "character" test that seems important to Coach today. I don't know how K would have viewed Heyman...would he have loved him as the feisty, street fighting competitor (Hurley) or backed off of him as and seen him as immature. There is also the interview of K's wife commenting on Gene Banks as saying "he is not one of our types of players". So it is difficult to say if either of those two would have been recruited in the first place! I suspect the others (and possibly these 2 as well) would have been recruited by K.

How would they fit in? All would have played.

Groat
I think Groat would be our point guard today, though I doubt he would have the lofty offensive numbers he enjoyed in the slower era in which he played. He would have adapted to the modern era. His hand eye coordination was world class. His passing would have been phenomenal.

Heyman
A more skilled version of a David Henderson. He could play...even today. Note that his skills did not translate well to the NBA...perhaps a revelation that on a court with many faster and taller players, he might not have been dominated.

Mullins
A star in any era. A shooter, a scorer, a passer, and a savvy player. Not to mention all american kid (student body president at Duke!) Proved himself in the NBA against all competition. K would have loved him.

Marin
Have to include him. See above (Mullins) similar story. (except the president thing!)

Verga ( my childhood hero)
Hello 3 point line. Arguably in the top 3 of all time Duke outside shooters. It the line had been there in that era, he would have launched more outside shots. This kid could flat shoot. I think he would have been vulnerable on defense, but who cares! He could shoot!

Lewis
He would have fit the 4 wings surrounding the low post (Lewis) concept beautifully. Would not score more than 15points per game today, but rebounding, outlet pass, defense...would fit in.

Denton
He was a very good player, but strictly low post...and deliberate. I remember him catching in the low post, dribbling several times, and taking a long stride and a sweeping hook shot. Not sure his game would translate as well to the frenetic pace of today's game, but he would have played.

Spanarkle
The essence of Sparky is that he understood the game and made it simple. Savvy beyond measure. He had tremendous body control and often glided into the lane, twisted his body , drew the foul and still finished. Steals, scoring...he did it all. He starts for Duke today!

Banks
Physically gifted, but no more so than Gerald...and without the shooting touch or handle. He would play (started in the NBA for years).

Uncle Drew
12-24-2007, 11:22 AM
Jeff, who was my classmate and has served as our class president from time to time, was an incredibly good player, not only in college but in the NBA. He played forward at 6-4; he was a good outside shooter and could run the court (like all the Bubas players); he was also silky smooth around the basket, making shots from incredible angles.

Against Villanova in the 64 regional finals at Reynolds Coliseum, he had a huge game, including sinking a half-court jumper at the end of the first half.

He was a role player on the Olympic team in Tokyo and then had a long run (11 years or so) in the NBA at shooting guard. After a couple of years of adjustment (take heart, JJ), Jeff was a fixture in the back court for the Warriors, earning an NBA championship in his last year. He also made a couple of all-star teams (possibly the first Duke player to do so). He was recognized for his quickness. One vignette is from the NBA 1-on-1 contest in the early 70s (one player from each team). He went all the way to the semifinals before losing to size-23 Bob Lanier, who was the eventual winner.

Would Mullins have been a star on Coach K's teams? You bet!

sagegrouse
'One guy not on your list who would have been an impact player today is Jack Marin, a slick and quick small forward, who also played in the pros forever.'



Okay forgive the younger one for not putting Marin on the list, as I have several of his NBA cards and he is a player my brother idolized as a kid. Thank you all who have responded so far as I absolutely love hearing about these guys.

It's my personal belief that todays players on average are so fundamentally UNSOUND in many ways and the guys from back in the day could not only compete but may have been even bigger stars today. When your average college player has spent 90% of his time either shooting 3's or dunking, anyone with a good midrange jumper could and would be successful.


Devil In The Blue Dress, I alas am not a Duke graduate so I have no access to any alumni database. (Pretty boy art major who didn't have the grades for Duke so I ended up at UNC-G, go ahead cry for me, I can't produce tears anymore! LOL!) I don't know what the requirements were for having your jersey retired back in the day, apparently you had to win the Nobel prize. Ive seen the Iron Duke football team recognized at football games, I REALLY think Duke should be recognizing these and other players from the pre-Coach K era, especially the All Americans at a game once a year. The prima donnas in todays college game need to know the game didn't start with Michael Jordan and the Duke guys need it drilled in their head Duke basketball has a LONG, GREAT tradition that was in place before Coach K was a point guard. Meeting or seeing any of these guys in person would be like seeing a unicorn because I've heard so many stories about them they seem like mythical creatures. And if any feelings have been hurt over the years the Athletic department needs to do what it can to smooth ruffled feathers and make them feel like members of the Duke basketball family again.


This is going to sound like I'm being sarcastic, but as time passes. I think new additions to the athletic department buildings should be named for past great players in all sports. I know Duke has a trophy room, why not call it the Bubas hall of champions or something. And retiring jerseys is great. But I think another awesome idea would be above every locker to put a past great's name, to let modern day players know they are continuing greatness and a role model to attempt to be as good as. Just my two cents, I don't expect anything to come of it as I don't have the ear of people in the know.

blueprofessor
12-24-2007, 11:59 AM
Saw all but Groat play.The posts above are remarkably descriptive and accurate. I miss those players.Most would be good today Some very good.My basic assumption with them is they could play well today if they were good in the pros then unless size and speed were critical deficiencies for today's college game.So let's look at their performances in the big leagues.
1. Marin was a fine player and had a very good pro career (46.5% , 84% foul shooter, as well as 19 points per game in his prime--1968--1973).He was a deadly mid-range shooter from base-line and quick with his hands and feet for a 6 -6 player.Good rebounder.He would be good today.
2.Spanarkel was a step slow in the pros in an era when speed was becoming commonplace. He had 2 decent years (14 and 10 ppg) and was a superior foul shooter (85%) and good shooter from floor(47%).At 6-5 , he was simply outquicked .His apg and rpg were below average.Defensive liability today.
3. Lewis was a beast of a rebounder. He would have dominated Texas Western in 1966 had we beaten KY to get to the Miners.He averaged 12 rpg ,12 ppg, was a 50% shooter, and 73% from foul line. He was a good assist man ( about 3 per game). At 6-8 and 225, he would have been undersized today.If he were 25 pounds heavier , he would still be very good today.
4. Mullins was one of the most underrated NBA players of his time. He was also a half-step slow but quick enough to survive with quality play.4 apg, 4 rpg, 46% from floor, 81 % from line, a 12 year veteran,20 ppg in his 7 year prime, 16 ppg overall. He was a fine defender and a great teammate. He would be a fine player today at 6-4,190.
5.Verga was short (6-1, but strong-stocky at 190) and a great mid-range jumpshooter( in the next category or 2 after Hal Greer). He averaged 21 ppg, 4 rpg(quick to the ball), 3 apg, 44 % from floor, and 75% from foul line.Not a particularly good 3-point shooter.Height would be a problem today and he would need a 3 shot.
6.Heyman was one of the greatest competitors I have ever seen. At 6-5 and 205, he was fearless.Excellent rebounder (4 rpg) and 3 apg.In his short career, he had 2 good tears (15 ppg with Knicks and 18.5 ppg with NJ-Pitt). 75% free-throw shooter and 43% from floor(not a bad % then).He would be a wing today.
7.Denton was a fine rebounder (12 rpg) in the pros.48 % shooter his first 5 years and he also shot 78% from the line. In college he was very good 12 feet in. At 6-10 and 245, he would be effective ( I remember him as big but not muscular)
with some more pounds of muscle.
8.Banks. Smooth, quick hustler.54% from floor,73% foul shooter, 11.3 ppg, 6 rpg, and 3 assists per game. With more muscle he would be a fine all-round player.:) Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday. Thanks for the memories!:D

Indoor66
12-24-2007, 12:10 PM
Saw all but Groat play.The posts above are remarkably descriptive and accurate. I miss those players.Most would be good today Some very good.My basic assumption with them is they could play well today if they were good in the pros then unless size and speed were critical deficiencies for today's college game.So let's look at their performances in the big leagues.
1. Marin was a fine player and had a very good pro career (46.5% , 84% foul shooter, as well as 19 points per game in his prime--1968--1973).He was a deadly mid-range shooter from base-line and quick with his hands and feet for a 6 -6 player.Good rebounder.He would be good today.
2.Spanarkel was a step slow in the pros in an era when speed was becoming commonplace. He had 2 decent years (14 and 10 ppg) and was a superior foul shooter (85%) and good shooter from floor(47%).At 6-5 , he was simply outquicked .His apg and rpg were below average.Defensive liability today.
3. Lewis was a beast of a rebounder. He would have dominated Texas Western in 1966 had we beaten KY to get to the Miners.He averaged 12 rpg ,12 ppg, was a 50% shooter, and 73% from foul line. He was a good assist man ( about 3 per game). At 6-8 and 225, he would have been undersized today.If he were 25 pounds heavier , he would still be very good today.
4. Mullins was one of the most underrated NBA players of his time. He was also a half-step slow but quick enough to survive with quality play.4 apg, 4 rpg, 46% from floor, 81 % from line, a 12 year veteran,20 ppg in his 7 year prime, 16 ppg overall. He was a fine defender and a great teammate. He would be a fine player today at 6-4,190.
5.Verga was short (6-1, but strong-stocky at 190) and a great mid-range jumpshooter( in the next category or 2 after Hal Greer). He averaged 21 ppg, 4 rpg(quick to the ball), 3 apg, 44 % from floor, and 75% from foul line.Not a particularly good 3-point shooter.Height would be a problem today and he would need a 3 shot.
6.Heyman was one of the greatest competitors I have ever seen. At 6-5 and 205, he was fearless.Excellent rebounder (4 rpg) and 3 apg.In his short career, he had 2 good tears (15 ppg with Knicks and 18.5 ppg with NJ-Pitt). 75% free-throw shooter and 43% from floor(not a bad % then).He would be a wing today.
7.Denton was a fine rebounder (12 rpg) in the pros.48 % shooter his first 5 years and he also shot 78% from the line. In college he was very good 12 feet in. At 6-10 and 245, he would be effective ( I remember him as big but not muscular)
with some more pounds of muscle.
8.Banks. Smooth, quick hustler.54% from floor,73% foul shooter, 11.3 ppg, 6 rpg, and 3 assists per game. With more muscle he would be a fine all-round player.:) Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday. Thanks for the memories!:D

Good report but I take issue with your point that Verga was not a good 3 point shooter. There was no line when he played, but his range was from just inside the 10 second line to the basket. He would have been a killer with the 3. His average would have been up 4 - 6 ppg higher than it was. With his instant release he could well play today.

gw67
12-24-2007, 12:34 PM
I got to see Jack play many a game for the Bullets. A terrific all around player and very heady. Traded to Houston for the "Big E". I found it very interesting that Bubas, in an interview a few years ago, stated that Jack was his "best" player at Duke over Heyman, Mullins and Verga. Sorta like Coach K stating that Trajan or Alarie were his best players. Marin and those guys were terrific but in the eyes of most fans they weren't the best.

In my view, the 1966 team ranks with the 1986 as the best Duke team not to win the Championship. Marin, Verga, Lewis, Vacendak and Reidy. Four of those guys played pro basketball.

gw67

blueprofessor
12-24-2007, 01:17 PM
I loved Verga. As Indoor66 said, he did have a quick release.That flu bug that hit him and Larry Conley killed our nat'l championship hope in 1966. I do believe Verga would have a problem today at 6-1 because his 3-point shooting in the pros was not particularly good: 29.6 %.He had seasons of 22.7%,27.9%, and 26 %. Of his 5,871 field goal shots, only 429 ( 7%) were 3-point attempts.His utility was as a shooting guard. Unfortunately, with present-day defenders who would be bigger and as quick or quicker than he , together with a not so hot 3-point shooting percentage, Verga would have problems scoring from that distance. That would severely limit his effectiveness today as he would not ,at 6-1, see more daylight at 15 feet than he would at the 3-line.All in my humble opinion .:)

3rd Dukie
12-24-2007, 03:10 PM
I saw all but Groat and Denton in person.


. Bob Verga - One of the pure shooters in Duke history. Might have given Dawkins a run for the scoring title if they had had 3's then. He had the flu in the semis in '66 or we might have had at least another appearance in the championship game. Don't know if we would have beaten Texas Western. I think he would have been a Coach K type player.

2. Dick Groat - No information.

3. Jeff Mullins - Another Coach K player, no doubt. Great all around player. Really shut down and lit up Wali Jones of Villanova (?) in the '64 (?) regionals. Great rebounder for his size (6'4") and clutch shooter.

4. Art Heyman - The maniac. Often compared to Tom Gola for how he followed his shots. Maybe the toughest guy, particularly rebounding, for his size ever to play at Duke.

5. Mike Lewis - I believe he was a Soph in the '66 ff. Probably more of a 4 than a true center. Tough inside, though. I don't have an opinion on how he would have fit with Coach K.

6. Randy Denton - no information

7. Jim Spanarkel* - In some ways not unlike Paulus. Not great foot speed, not as good a shooter as Paulus, except from the foul line, as I recall. Great understanding of the game. I believe he was the only major contributor to not return after '78 FF and the team was not even close to being as good. I saw them lose 2 in a row in MSG in December of '78. Ohio State, IIRC, embarrassed them. I believe Coach K would have loved him.

8. Gene Banks* - A tremendous all-round player with a fun attitude. "Mean Gene the Dunkin' Machine" is one of my personal all time favorites. He and Dennard were some duo.

One named overlooked often is Steve Vacendak. He also started on the '66 team, as well as playing with Mullins earlier. Jay Buckley, class of '63 or '64, was a true center who went on, IIRC, to become an astronaut. His son later played at Duke.

The only one of this group that might not have fit in with Coach K would have been Heyman, and even that is a stretch. He was such a dominant college player that I believe he would have fit and would have starred.

The main one who might not have starred, or even started, is Spanarkel. However, his leadership qualities were so great that I would have not been surprised at either outcome.

These comments are all from memory, and if the stats disprove anything I have said, I apologize. These were all wonderful players to see play. I hope I did not ramble too much.

3rd Dukie
12-24-2007, 03:14 PM
I loved Verga. As Indoor66 said, he did have a quick release.That flu bug that hit him and Larry Conley killed our nat'l championship hope in 1966. I do believe Verga would have a problem today at 6-1 because his 3-point shooting in the pros was not particularly good: 29.6 %.He had seasons of 22.7%,27.9%, and 26 %. Of his 5,871 field goal shots, only 429 ( 7%) were 3-point attempts.His utility was as a shooting guard. Unfortunately, with present-day defenders who would be bigger and as quick or quicker than he , together with a not so hot 3-point shooting percentage, Verga would have problems scoring from that distance. That would severely limit his effectiveness today as he would not ,at 6-1, see more daylight at 15 feet than he would at the 3-line.All in my humble opinion .:)

I was at that game, and have always thought it Dampier who had the flu. As a matter of fact, Conley was in my National Guard unit for several years, and we used to joke about it. Maybe I am mistaken.

Indoor66
12-24-2007, 03:39 PM
I was at that game, and have always thought it Dampier who had the flu. As a matter of fact, Conley was in my National Guard unit for several years, and we used to joke about it. Maybe I am mistaken.

It was Verga that had the flu. He was about 20% and could not perform. I agree that had he been healthy we would have beaten KY and the outcome for Texas Western might have been quite different. We had better match-ups than did KY.

dw0827
12-24-2007, 03:40 PM
Good report but I take issue with your point that Verga was not a good 3 point shooter. There was no line when he played, but his range was from just inside the 10 second line to the basket. He would have been a killer with the 3. His average would have been up 4 - 6 ppg higher than it was. With his instant release he could well play today.

In his ABA pro career, he only shot 29.6% from the 3 line . . . so while he had a GREAT mid-range jumper, I guess he wasn't as effective as a long range shooter.

I remember some of the sets they ran for him. Seemed like they ran a triple screen to get him loose near the top of the key. Like they were stacking blocks. Then BOOM with that funny release of his.

Indoor66
12-24-2007, 03:41 PM
In his ABA pro career, he only shot 29.6% from the 3 line . . . so while he had a GREAT mid-range jumper, I guess he wasn't as effective as a long range shooter.

I remember some of the sets they ran for him. Seemed like they ran a triple screen to get him loose near the top of the key. Like they were stacking blocks. Then BOOM with that funny release of his.

I was speaking about college. Many of his baskets were from well beyond the college 3 point line.

dw0827
12-24-2007, 03:47 PM
I was speaking about college. Many of his baskets were from well beyond the college 3 point line.

Okay. Yup, he was deadly right around the top of the key. And it didn't matter if he was well-guarded because he had a quick release and his shot was nearly impossible to block.

3rd Dukie
12-24-2007, 04:00 PM
It was Verga that had the flu. He was about 20% and could not perform. I agree that had he been healthy we would have beaten KY and the outcome for Texas Western might have been quite different. We had better match-ups than did KY.

Indoor, I am not contesting the fact that Verga had the flu. However, at least of the KY players was under the weather as well. I remember it as being Louie Dampier. Someone else remembered it as being Larry Conley. That's what I referring to.

Further, I forget if it was Reidy or Chapman, but one of them missed a stick back at about the 1:30 mark that would have made a difference as well.

Glad to see someone else who remembers these guys as fondly as I do.

Good stuff.

Teton Jack
12-24-2007, 04:32 PM
Other than Dick Groat, I saw them all play. My favorite player, however, wasn't on your list, Steve Vacendak. He was a gutty player that may not have been the most talented individual on the floor, but he put everything on the line and made things happen. He was a winner who could make the play that turned the game around. K would have loved him and, if he had played for K, he would be on our bench as an associate coach.

Teton Jack

3rd Dukie
12-24-2007, 04:39 PM
Other than Dick Groat, I saw them all play. My favorite player, however, wasn't on your list, Steve Vacendak. He was a gutty player that may not have been the most talented individual on the floor, but he put everything on the line and made things happen. He was a winner who could make the play that turned the game around. K would have loved him and, if he had played for K, he would be on our bench as an associate coach.

Teton Jack

Absolutely right!!
I mentioned him earlier. I loved his game. IIRC, was a coal miner's son from western PA. As hard-nosed as they came. I agree with your entire post.

thomas
12-24-2007, 05:33 PM
I do not think anyone has mentioned Steve Vacendak, whose hustle and spunk may have been eclipsed only by Art Heyman (and later by Wojo). Vacendak was only 6'2" (or less) but actually played forward much of his career (back then Duke played traditional positions). One year (I think) 1966 he was the MVP of the ACC tournament.

Verga was one of my heroes but Vacendak was really more of a Coach K type player. I'm not sure Verga would have toed the line for K.


Did anyone see Vacendak play?

Indoor66
12-24-2007, 06:57 PM
I do not think anyone has mentioned Steve Vacendak, whose hustle and spunk may have been eclipsed only by Art Heyman (and later by Wojo). Vacendak was only 6'2" (or less) but actually played forward much of his career (back then Duke played traditional positions). One year (I think) 1966 he was the MVP of the ACC tournament.

Verga was one of my heroes but Vacendak was really more of a Coach K type player. I'm not sure Verga would have toed the line for K.


Did anyone see Vacendak play?

Steve was a classic point guard. He was gutty and was a good defender, good handle and super hands. In 1966 he was ACC Player of the Year (but did not make ACC 1st team). Steve was drafted by San Francisco in the 3rd round (1966). He went to law school at Duke for one year and then played pro ball for 3 years. Later he coached and was coach at Winthrop College. His son, Stephen, was an Appalachian State grad and was killed in a bicycling accident in 1999. Steve is now executive director of NC Beautiful in Raleigh.

Indoor66
12-24-2007, 06:58 PM
At the risk of revealing the age of some of the people who might reply to this I have a question for some of the "old timers" out there. I started watching Duke basketball in 1978 and my all time favorite player will always be Mike Gminski. As stated in a previous post I think he was probably the last truly dominant center at Duke. And though Duke has opted for a FFGGG system under Coach K for whatever reasons I think he would fit well into Coach K's past and present schemes. I also think he would be a very good player even today if for no other reason than being so fundamentally sound and able to draw fouls on opposing players.


I'd like some feedback on other pre Coach K players I never saw play from those who did. If they were in their Duke prime do you guys think they would be good / great players today? Do you think they would be the type of player Coach K likes to recruit? I've been told NCSU's David Thompson would be just as dominant in todays college game if not more so and I'd like opinions on the following past Duke greats. Please also if you could identify the type game each player had if you remember and their major strengths.

1. Bob Verga

2. Dick Groat

3. Jeff Mullins

4. Art Heyman

5. Mike Lewis

6. Randy Denton

7. Jim Spanarkel*

8. Gene Banks*


*I saw Spanarkel and Banks play and yes I realize Banks played a year under Coach K.

I found this article about Mike Lewis:

http://www.theacc.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/020504aac.html

Uncle Drew
12-24-2007, 08:28 PM
Thank you for posting the Lewis article. Though I knew about his play I learned a lot more reading the article. I swear it makes me want to look the guy up in the book the next time I'm in Kernersville to get an autograph. But that would be low class of me and probably agrivating for him even if he had a listed number.

OrangeDevil
12-24-2007, 08:46 PM
Boy, does this date me! But I welcome it inasmuch as it returns me to my NC childhood and youth. The memories are visceral. I remember the goose bumbs when the Pilot Life jingle was played before the telecast: "Sail with the Pilot..." I won't comment on all on them but had there been a three point line we might have been referencing Bob Verga before J.J.. Jeff Mullins was simply solid in all phasees and Art Heyman was a beast a long the baseline. I would lump Gminski, Spanarkel, and Banks together. Each was superb without superior quickness or hops. If fact, "athleticism" was a quality that was not particularly in evidence in the pre-K era. It might be worth noteing that the great African-American players at Duke were also fairly late. With exception to perhaps Gene Banks, JD was probably the pioneer. It occurs to me that Duke Basketball owes sooo much to Johnny Dawkins.

thomas
12-24-2007, 09:11 PM
I stand partially corrected. Actually, in 1965 Bubas played 3 guards - Denny Ferguson, Verga, and Vacendak - and Vacendak functioned as a forward, going up against much bigger opponents and averaging around 6+ rebounds per game. In '66, he returned to his natural guard position and after being left off 1st team All-ACC, he was MVP of the tourney and one week later was selected POTY. Anyone ever heard of the POTY not being 1st team all conference?

Jim Sumner's book best describes Vacendak's importance to Duke during that time and quotes Bubas as saying he was the 'best battler" ever to play for him.

i saw all of the above-mentioned players play at Duke. They were all great. Marin in particular was the multi-dimensional player K loves today. But I still contend that Vacendak was more of a Coach K type player than any of the others mentioned.

arnie
12-25-2007, 08:08 AM
I think Banks deserves more credit here. He was the recruit that gave Duke instant credibility after a long post Bubas slump (Bucky and early Foster years). Remember that he shared No. 1 HS player status with Albert King, slightly ahead of some nobody named Earvin Johnson. Without Banks at Duke, we don't make the run in 1978 - and possibly Bill Foster doesn't get the big head and leave. It's always fun to wonder then, where does K wind up?

3rd Dukie
12-25-2007, 03:35 PM
I think Banks deserves more credit here. He was the recruit that gave Duke instant credibility after a long post Bubas slump (Bucky and early Foster years). Remember that he shared No. 1 HS player status with Albert King, slightly ahead of some nobody named Earvin Johnson. Without Banks at Duke, we don't make the run in 1978 - and possibly Bill Foster doesn't get the big head and leave. It's always fun to wonder then, where does K wind up?

I agree completely. Furthermore, I remember reading an article about him just before leaving for St. Louis and the FF in which he said he would probably have gone to Penn if the IVY League had let freshmen play at the time. His freshman year was right near the beginning of that rule's taking effect. He also said he wanted to be the governor of Pennsylvania.

Uncle Drew
12-25-2007, 11:45 PM
This is a general question about former Duke players and I realize each player has their own personality and looks back at their Duke days differently. When I had the fortune of meeting Johnny Dawkins he was very nice, didn't seem aloof and gracious even though I was falling all over myself in awe of the guy. I've heard the same about other players such as Battier and Grant Hill (Calvin Hill as a Cowboys fan was also a thrill to meet and as nice as could be!).

If one of us ran into Mullins, Verga, Banks etc. at a Duke game or even the mall do you think they enjoy fans noticing them and / or asking for an autograph. Or do you think they would tend to be like, "Jeeze not this again"? When JJ broke Wake Forest player Dickie Hemrick's record a few years back, the media said he enjoyed the re-found celebrity and media attention. I was just wondering posters opinions about how the ex-Duke greats feel about attention for deeds done back in the day. (Especially from someone like me who may or may not have seen them play.)

gw67
12-26-2007, 07:13 AM
The pedigree of the Duke players being discussed is amazing. According to Charlie Board,

Heyman - 3 time All ACC 1st team, 1 time POY
Mullins - 3 time All ACC 1st team, 1 time POY
Verga - 3 time All ACC 1st team
Spanarkel - 2 time All ACC 1st team, 1 time 2nd team
Marin - 2 time All ACC 1st team
Banks - 1 time All ACC 1st team, 3 times 2nd team
Denton - 1 time All ACC 1st team, 2 times 2nd team
Lewis - 1 time All ACC 1st team, 1 time 2nd team
Vacendak - 2 times 2nd team, 1 time POY

These honors were obtained when freshmen weren't elgible (except for Banks).

Another thought re Banks. As previously noted, he came into the league with Albert King. They were hyped as the top two players in the country as high school players. They had remarkably similar four year careers and were excellent, although not dominating, players. I believe Jeff Lamp also started the same year and he also had a very good career at Virginia. I can recall many a discussion I had with my best friend at the time (a Virginia grad) about the relative abilities of these three players. I recall that he convinced me that Lamp was slightly better (of course I agreed since he had tickets to all the Virginia games as well as their game at Cole).

gw67

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-26-2007, 08:46 AM
This is a general question about former Duke players and I realize each player has their own personality and looks back at their Duke days differently. When I had the fortune of meeting Johnny Dawkins he was very nice, didn't seem aloof and gracious even though I was falling all over myself in awe of the guy. I've heard the same about other players such as Battier and Grant Hill (Calvin Hill as a Cowboys fan was also a thrill to meet and as nice as could be!).

If one of us ran into Mullins, Verga, Banks etc. at a Duke game or even the mall do you think they enjoy fans noticing them and / or asking for an autograph. Or do you think they would tend to be like, "Jeeze not this again"? When JJ broke Wake Forest player Dickie Hemrick's record a few years back, the media said he enjoyed the re-found celebrity and media attention. I was just wondering posters opinions about how the ex-Duke greats feel about attention for deeds done back in the day. (Especially from someone like me who may or may not have seen them play.)

I see Jeff Mullins from time to time at alumni or other events at Duke. Whenever possible I make my way to wherever he is to speak to him and thank him for something he did when I was a freshman and he was a senior. My big sister in the dorm had asked me to get his autograph. One afternoon I saw him seated with the late Ted Mann, Jr. over in the football stadium watching the freshman football team. He was very gracious in giving his autograph that day long ago and continues to be very gracious when I see him now. He not only gave a generic autograph for my big sister, but he wrote one just for me. I still have it! I missed seeing Verga at our class reunion in the spring .... the freshman basketball team had a reunion which included Chuck Dailey, their coach ....my recall of his personality is that he's not outgoing when he comes to meet and greet activities. Art Heyman was also very gracious and really seemed to relish writing a special note. And Gene Banks..... I don't think he's every met a stranger!

wumhenry
12-26-2007, 09:33 AM
He was a first-team All American.
BTW and FWIW, he had a livid birthmark that ran from his neck all the way down one arm. Among friends, he was nicknamed "Spook."

sagegrouse
12-26-2007, 09:51 AM
Jeff Mullins is one of the most personable individuals I have ever known. He is unfailingly polite and friendly and truly interested in anyone he meets. I have known him casually for 40+ years, and I know his close friends feel the same way about him.

sagegrouse

Uncle Drew
12-26-2007, 12:21 PM
I see Jeff Mullins from time to time at alumni or other events at Duke. Whenever possible I make my way to wherever he is to speak to him and thank him for something he did when I was a freshman and he was a senior. My big sister in the dorm had asked me to get his autograph. One afternoon I saw him seated with the late Ted Mann, Jr. over in the football stadium watching the freshman football team. He was very gracious in giving his autograph that day long ago and continues to be very gracious when I see him now. He not only gave a generic autograph for my big sister, but he wrote one just for me. I still have it! I missed seeing Verga at our class reunion in the spring .... the freshman basketball team had a reunion which included Chuck Dailey, their coach ....my recall of his personality is that he's not outgoing when he comes to meet and greet activities. Art Heyman was also very gracious and really seemed to relish writing a special note. And Gene Banks..... I don't think he's every met a stranger!

Chuck Dailey? The Dailey who coached the Pistons to two championships?


I know this has been brought up and posted on DBR before but I can't recall the specifics. I know Duke has gone back and retro retired a few jerseys. But what exactly ARE the requirements to have your jersey retired at Duke. Granted I don't want to be like UNC where if you started a game each of your four years and hit a game winning basket against the Lynchburg Elks they retire your jersey. But as great as I'm hearing as some of these guys were I wonder why I don't see their jerseys hanging in the rafters when I have the good fortune of visiting Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-26-2007, 12:37 PM
Yes, Chuck Dailey coached freshman b'ball and was assistant varsity coach at Duke for a few years.

As for criteria for retiring a number at Duke, being national player of the year is one of the requirements. Other awards are important, possibly being a championship team and last, but not least, GRADUATING. The criteria have been vague until recent years when some clarity was developed.

There is a difference between having one's jersey hung in the rafters and having one's number retired. Lots of jerseys in the rafters looks a bit like laundry day...

Indoor66
12-26-2007, 12:47 PM
Yes, Chuck Dailey coached freshman b'ball and was assistant varsity coach at Duke for a few years.

As for criteria for retiring a number at Duke, being national player of the year is one of the requirements. Other awards are important, possibly being a championship team and last, but not least, GRADUATING. The criteria have been vague until recent years when some clarity was developed.

There is a difference between having one's jersey hung in the rafters and having one's number retired. Lots of jerseys in the rafters looks a bit like laundry day...

...and a serious light blue disease. :D

blueprofessor
12-26-2007, 02:53 PM
I was at that game, and have always thought it Dampier who had the flu. As a matter of fact, Conley was in my National Guard unit for several years, and we used to joke about it. Maybe I am mistaken.

from http://espn.go.com/magazine/curry_20011217.html
Indeed, in that '66 NCAA semifinal tussle at College Park, Md. between the No. 1 and No.2 ranked teams, the outcome turned on which significant player -- Larry Conley of Kentucky (yeah, that Larry Conley, the TV broadcaster) or Bob Verga of Duke -- could recover more completely from similarly severe cases of the flu. Verga, the Devils' leading scorer all season, had lost five pounds the week of the championship; Conley, the 'Cats' exquisite playmaker, was running a 102 degree fever and breathing over a vaporizer the night before the game.

Came the penultimate evening, however, Verga could manage only two baskets while Conley could grab a defensive rebound, race the length of the court and score to give Kentucky a seven-point lead with a minute left. The Wildcats -- despite somebody named Pat Riley having fouled out -- clinched their victory.:(

Uncle Drew
12-26-2007, 06:14 PM
Yes, Chuck Dailey coached freshman b'ball and was assistant varsity coach at Duke for a few years.

As for criteria for retiring a number at Duke, being national player of the year is one of the requirements. Other awards are important, possibly being a championship team and last, but not least, GRADUATING. The criteria have been vague until recent years when some clarity was developed.

There is a difference between having one's jersey hung in the rafters and having one's number retired. Lots of jerseys in the rafters looks a bit like laundry day...



Wow I had no idea Dailey had any involvement with Duke university at all. I'm about as shocked to hear that as I was to find I'm a distant, distant relative of Bill Clinton. (Don't worry I stay away from interns!)


I'm sure this has been discussed before and I understand the criteria listed by Devil in the Blue Dress. But do you guys think some of the old school players that haven't had their jersey retired and hanging in the rafters are deserving of that honor? For example Duke has had so many defensive players of the year and seeing as Coach K preaches defense like fire and brimstone does that count. (Or should it count?) If you had to list five past players from any era to retire the jersey of whom would they be?


Please don't take this as I'm wanting Duke to go back and retro retire any more jerseys. If Duke started retiring the jerseys of the towel boys like they do at UNC the honor wouldn't mean as much.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-26-2007, 06:51 PM
Wow I had no idea Dailey had any involvement with Duke university at all. I'm about as shocked to hear that as I was to find I'm a distant, distant relative of Bill Clinton. (Don't worry I stay away from interns!)


I'm sure this has been discussed before and I understand the criteria listed by Devil in the Blue Dress. But do you guys think some of the old school players that haven't had their jersey retired and hanging in the rafters are deserving of that honor? For example Duke has had so many defensive players of the year and seeing as Coach K preaches defense like fire and brimstone does that count. (Or should it count?) If you had to list five past players from any era to retire the jersey of whom would they be?


Please don't take this as I'm wanting Duke to go back and retro retire any more jerseys. If Duke started retiring the jerseys of the towel boys like they do at UNC the honor wouldn't mean as much.

Please remember that there's a big difference between having one's jersey hanging in the rafters and the number goes on being used season after season and having the number retired, meaning no one else wears that number again. Most of the jerseys hanging in the rafters at the Dean Dome do NOT represent numbers retired. Carolina usually honors outstanding players by hanging jerseys. Duke RETIRES the NUMBER.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-26-2007, 07:06 PM
Chuck Dailey was brought to Duke by Vic Bubas. Hubie Brown was also an assistant coach under Bubas. Go to your 207-08 Duke Basketball Yearbook, page 65, bottom right corner, and you'll see the three coaches together.

Uncle Drew
12-26-2007, 07:43 PM
Chuck Dailey was brought to Duke by Vic Bubas. Hubie Brown was also an assistant coach under Bubas. Go to your 207-08 Duke Basketball Yearbook, page 65, bottom right corner, and you'll see the three coaches together.

Devil in the Blue Dress, as stated in other posts I was an art major at UNC-G, like I could afford a Duke year book! LOL.

I realize the significance of a hanging jersey is much different at Duke and the University of Northern Carrboro. I guess performances and championships speak for themselves. And the guys hanging in the rafters in Cameron are the truly deserving ones. But take a guy like Wojo, who was a defensive player of the year. (If I'm thinking correctly while drinking this Patron.) Nobody bled Duke blue more than that guy. Do I think his jersey deserves to be hanging up, no. But all these stories about past greats makes me wonder if some of the guys before my time aren't deserving.

buddy
12-26-2007, 08:02 PM
I have seen all but Groat and Heyman play. I think they all could have played for K, because all were gamers. I agree that Verga may have had more problems with K's structure than the rest of the list (although from what I hear Heyman was no "choir boy"). Vacendak was probably the quintessential K player (even though not on your list). He reminds me of Wojo's play--although he was far more of an offensive threat.

As for the 1966 team, I think there were at least six future pros--Jack Marin, Steve Vacendak, Bob Verga, Bob Reidy (played for only part of a season), Mike Lewis, and Joe Kennedy. I think Tim Kolodziej also may have played, but I am not certain about that.

I have met Marin and Vacendak socially--both were very personable and gracious.

I think Verga would have been a terrific three point shooter in college. The height disadvantage would not have been as great, the line is not as far back as in the pros, and his signature shot was from the head of the key--which is three point range.

I further agree that Bubas was quite the innovator. His achievements have been diminished in retrospect due to the success of K--but in his day Bubas was quite the innovator.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-26-2007, 08:29 PM
Devil in the Blue Dress, as stated in other posts I was an art major at UNC-G, like I could afford a Duke year book! LOL.

I realize the significance of a hanging jersey is much different at Duke and the University of Northern Carrboro. I guess performances and championships speak for themselves. And the guys hanging in the rafters in Cameron are the truly deserving ones. But take a guy like Wojo, who was a defensive player of the year. (If I'm thinking correctly while drinking this Patron.) Nobody bled Duke blue more than that guy. Do I think his jersey deserves to be hanging up, no. But all these stories about past greats makes me wonder if some of the guys before my time aren't deserving.

Yes, there were several deserving guys especially from the Bubas era who were never accorded that sort of honor. My understanding is that after Dick Groat's number was retired, there was no real expectation or plan for other number retirements. Once the retirements resumed with Mike Gminski followed by Johnny Dawkins and Danny Ferry questions came up about the great duo of Art Heyman and Jeff Mullins. During Heyman's Duke playing career and for a time thereafter some with influence made it clear that they didn't want Heyman to be honored like that because he had not been a model of decorum. A feud of sorts, bad feelings continued between the decision makers and Artie for a number of years, but by 1990 all were able to rise above this conflict and Artie's number was retired. Four years later Jeff's number was retired. Whatever the standards are, they've evolved as the greats kept on enrolling and playing at Duke.

A note about Artie: he was originally recruited and agreed to play for Frank McGuire at Carolina. Vic Bubas was hired in May 1959 and began to try to recruit Artie, trying to convince him and his family that he should go to Duke. The decision was not finalized until shortly before the time frosh were to report for orientation. This change of heart for one player became part of the ill will between the two schools. Artie and Larry Brown had been friends and competitors on Long Island and planned to play on the same college team. The last minute change of plans for Artie was a starting point for the severe alienation which took over the relationship with Larry Brown. Once Artie was playing, he was subjected to ethnic name calling by fans and players. Whenever he played Carolina he was subjected to physical (being spat at in the face) and verbal abuse from other players as well as the fans. There's more to this story, but you can identify the trend which developed. It's amazing that Artie was able to play so well under such conditions. One post a few days ago wondered whether Artie could have played under Coach K. Coach Bubas's personality and style seem to be viewed as being a contrast to that of Coach K. The Bubas who was in the locker room getting Art Heyman ready to go out to play in the very physical contests prevalent in the ACC at that time was at least as passionate as Coach K. His language and and manner could match Coach K's best rant! I think Artie could have played under Coach K and flourished.

thomas
12-27-2007, 07:54 PM
I have seen all but Groat and Heyman play. I think they all could have played for K, because all were gamers. I agree that Verga may have had more problems with K's structure than the rest of the list (although from what I hear Heyman was no "choir boy"). Vacendak was probably the quintessential K player (even though not on your list). He reminds me of Wojo's play--although he was far more of an offensive threat.

As for the 1966 team, I think there were at least six future pros--Jack Marin, Steve Vacendak, Bob Verga, Bob Reidy (played for only part of a season), Mike Lewis, and Joe Kennedy. I think Tim Kolodziej also may have played, but I am not certain about that.

I have met Marin and Vacendak socially--both were very personable and gracious.

I think Verga would have been a terrific three point shooter in college. The height disadvantage would not have been as great, the line is not as far back as in the pros, and his signature shot was from the head of the key--which is three point range.

I further agree that Bubas was quite the innovator. His achievements have been diminished in retrospect due to the success of K--but in his day Bubas was quite the innovator.

Thanks for speaking up about Vacendak! He was the epitome of competitiveness..... The coaches and sportswriters of that era knew.

greybeard
12-28-2007, 12:22 AM
Of the players mentioned, the two who made the biggest impression on me were Vacendak and Marin in that order in college. Watching Marin as a pro, he was a brilliant, brilliant guy on the court, and as fierce a competitor as the game has known. Unorthodox in his movements, if the guy could use his right hand, he might have been the best Duke has produced, Grant and Shane included.

greybeard
12-28-2007, 05:13 PM
Yes, there were several deserving guys especially from the Bubas era who were never accorded that sort of honor. My understanding is that after Dick Groat's number was retired, there was no real expectation or plan for other number retirements. Once the retirements resumed with Mike Gminski followed by Johnny Dawkins and Danny Ferry questions came up about the great duo of Art Heyman and Jeff Mullins. During Heyman's Duke playing career and for a time thereafter some with influence made it clear that they didn't want Heyman to be honored like that because he had not been a model of decorum. A feud of sorts, bad feelings continued between the decision makers and Artie for a number of years, but by 1990 all were able to rise above this conflict and Artie's number was retired. Four years later Jeff's number was retired. Whatever the standards are, they've evolved as the greats kept on enrolling and playing at Duke.

A note about Artie: he was originally recruited and agreed to play for Frank McGuire at Carolina. Vic Bubas was hired in May 1959 and began to try to recruit Artie, trying to convince him and his family that he should go to Duke. The decision was not finalized until shortly before the time frosh were to report for orientation. This change of heart for one player became part of the ill will between the two schools. Artie and Larry Brown had been friends and competitors on Long Island and planned to play on the same college team. The last minute change of plans for Artie was a starting point for the severe alienation which took over the relationship with Larry Brown. Once Artie was playing, he was subjected to ethnic name calling by fans and players. Whenever he played Carolina he was subjected to physical (being spat at in the face) and verbal abuse from other players as well as the fans. There's more to this story, but you can identify the trend which developed. It's amazing that Artie was able to play so well under such conditions. One post a few days ago wondered whether Artie could have played under Coach K. Coach Bubas's personality and style seem to be viewed as being a contrast to that of Coach K. The Bubas who was in the locker room getting Art Heyman ready to go out to play in the very physical contests prevalent in the ACC at that time was at least as passionate as Coach K. His language and and manner could match Coach K's best rant! I think Artie could have played under Coach K and flourished.

I'll have to check with my boyz, but I remember hearing that the fighting between Brown and Heyman began when they played against one another in high school. They went to neighboring schools on the Island, which were historic rivals, and I seem to remember that teammates of mine who knew Brown as their camp counselor said that the fighting began in high school.

That is not to say that your account is not otherwise entirely accurate. McQuire might well have convinced the two to go to UNC together on the strength of the success that his Brooklyn boys, Moe and Rosenberg, had had in bringing UNC its first national championship.

All other things aside, I cannot conceive that Brown and Heyman would have performed well on the same team. In fact, I can only believe that they would have duked it out in every practice, with each insisting that having the ball in his hands was the key to success. They both would have been right.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-28-2007, 06:26 PM
I'll have to check with my boyz, but I remember hearing that the fighting between Brown and Heyman began when they played against one another in high school. They went to neighboring schools on the Island, which were historic rivals, and I seem to remember that teammates of mine who knew Brown as their camp counselor said that the fighting began in high school.

That is not to say that your account is not otherwise entirely accurate. McQuire might well have convinced the two to go to UNC together on the strength of the success that his Brooklyn boys, Moe and Rosenberg, had had in bringing UNC its first national championship.

All other things aside, I cannot conceive that Brown and Heyman would have performed well on the same team. In fact, I can only believe that they would have duked it out in every practice, with each insisting that having the ball in his hands was the key to success. They both would have been right.

I got my information from Art Chansky. (See his book Blue Blood, pages 60-61. Chansky interviewed Artie (and many others) at length as he prepared for this book.) The word friend can convey a wide range of meanings. I intended it to mean that they were well acquainted with each other and had known and competed against each other for many years.

Did you happen to be in attendance to witness "the fight"? I understand that the freshman game (Jeff Mullins played for Duke in that one) which preceded the varsity game that night was equally exciting with five players fouling out and three more ejected for fighting. People were still talking about "the fight" when I arrived on campus two years later. The version one heard depended on who was doing the talking!

heyman25
12-28-2007, 06:53 PM
Not to be picky but Coach Chuck Daley has no I. Hubie Brown was another famous assistant for Vic Bubas.When I was 9 we had Art Heyman, Jeff Mullins and Terry Murray over at my house for Thanksgiving.

greybeard
12-28-2007, 07:25 PM
I got my information from Art Chansky. (See his book Blue Blood, pages 60-61. Chansky interviewed Artie (and many others) at length as he prepared for this book.) The word friend can convey a wide range of meanings. I intended it to mean that they were well acquainted with each other and had known and competed against each other for many years.

Did you happen to be in attendance to witness "the fight"? I understand that the freshman game (Jeff Mullins played for Duke in that one) which preceded the varsity game that night was equally exciting with five players fouling out and three more ejected for fighting. People were still talking about "the fight" when I arrived on campus two years later. The version one heard depended on who was doing the talking!

I was in Jr. High School at that time and was unaware that UNC or Duke existed.

Several years later, Brent Glass, a teammate of mine who was and remains quite close to Larry told me of the fight and, if I remember correctly, also told me that the two started fighting in high school.

Some interesting facts I've mentioned here before. One of the best players in my high school's history, Brian McSweeney, followed Larry to UNC and captained the team Dean's first or second year, when Billy was a sophomore. When I was a freshman, Heyman dropped by the gym at my school to chat with our coach. He shot around a bit. Good thing he could handle and was tough as nails. He couldn't shoot worth a damn as far as I could see.

When Heyman and Larry were seniors, we had an all county guard, Tommy Pearsall, who was as quick as Larry, or so "they" all said, and went on to be a three time first team Little All American at Albright College in Pa. His kid brother Steve played with me and Brent (actually me and Brent watched him) and went on to captain U of P. Two of the guys on that team went on to play for UConn and another for U of Georgia.

Tommy played in the backcourt with a guy named Bobby Gottlieb, whose son, Doug, everybody knows. Bobby played freshman ball with Lucas, Havlechek, and Knight at Ohio State, went on to coach division 1, and now runs a development program for college prospects in SoCal. His other son is an assistant at Cal.

Lots of good ball played back on the Island in those days, too bad not by me.

Indoor66
12-28-2007, 08:01 PM
I was in Jr. High School at that time and was unaware that UNC or Duke existed.

Several years later, Brent Glass, a teammate of mine who was and remains quite close to Larry told me of the fight and, if I remember correctly, also told me that the two started fighting in high school.

Some interesting facts I've mentioned here before. One of the best players in my high school's history, Brian McSweeney, followed Larry to UNC and captained the team Dean's first or second year, when Billy was a sophomore. When I was a freshman, Heyman dropped by the gym at my school to chat with our coach. He shot around a bit. Good thing he could handle and was tough as nails. He couldn't shoot worth a damn as far as I could see.

When Heyman and Larry were seniors, we had an all county guard, Tommy Pearsall, who was as quick as Larry, or so "they" all said, and went on to be a three time first team Little All American at Albright College in Pa. His kid brother Steve played with me and Brent (actually me and Brent watched him) and went on to captain U of P. Two of the guys on that team went on to play for UConn and another for U of Georgia.

Tommy played in the backcourt with a guy named Bobby Gottlieb, whose son, Doug, everybody knows. Bobby played freshman ball with Lucas, Havlechek, and Knight at Ohio State, went on to coach division 1, and now runs a development program for college prospects in SoCal. His other son is an assistant at Cal.

Lots of good ball played back on the Island in those days, too bad not by me.

I watched Tom Pearsall play at Albright - and in the NCAA prelims played at Albright - in Reading, PA. He was a heck of a player. I went to the games with our Reading High School coach, Pete Carrill and with Gary Walters, now the Princeton AD who was just behind me in school.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-28-2007, 09:10 PM
I was in Jr. High School at that time and was unaware that UNC or Duke existed.
So when did you become aware if Duke basketball?

greybeard
12-29-2007, 11:42 AM
I watched Tom Pearsall play at Albright - and in the NCAA prelims played at Albright - in Reading, PA. He was a heck of a player. I went to the games with our Reading High School coach, Pete Carrill and with Gary Walters, now the Princeton AD who was just behind me in school.

You are kidding right? The greatest basketball mind/reacher-of-the-great-game-ofall-time was your high school coach? Wait a minute while I genuflect a few times. Pete Carrill, ever since I saw that game against Patrick Ewing, I've been an idol worshiper.

Walters was a terrific guard. I mean Bradley was unbelievable in college but nobody does it alone and the guy who actually ran the show was Gary. Saw him twice, both times in defeat. My freshman year at Cornell, when a sophomore named Blaine Astin made a last second shot to put Princeton down, and the year before in the Garden, in what must have been the most unbelievable dismanteling of a giant by a little since Biblical times when Bradley dropped 48 on a Michigan team lead by its smallest starter, 6'6" Cazzie Russell. Bradley fouled out with about 4 minutes to play and Princeton up 10 or so which was alot in those days, but couldn't hold on.

Gary impressed the hell out of me is all I remember, with that high left handed dribble of his daring people to come at him to try to get it, and the ease with which he gave it up. Good scorer, if I remember, too.

Summers evenings at Hewlett High school the gym was open. The players on the team and guys who graduated had a four on four game going for most of the evening; then, towards the end, the coach would have the bigs choose up sides with whomever was around included and we'd play three baskets win until closing. I found my way up there towards the end of the summer after 8th grade and the coach invited me to tag along to a clinic given by Butch Vanbredikoff, who was then at Hofstra. Closest I came to anythin Princeton.

Saw Tommy at the gym several times. He had the ability to push hard towards the basket on either side of the lane, if the defender retreated, he'd pull up and nail it, if not the guy was dead. If he didn't blow right past him with a burst, he had a cross over on the move that was to this day unique. Say he was coming down the right side, the normal crossover would involve a slow down, and dribble somewhat backwards or close to lateral with the right foot being the first step when the ball crossed over. Not with Tommy. He would burst and not slow down a bit. The crossover would be a diagnal push to the basket, with the first step being a huge one with his left foot. He would catch with his left hand after the left planted, take an explosive and huge step with his right, then plant with is left and finish at the rim. A muscular 5'8" he was a blur and the move completely unstoppable. I believe he also would do it with the other hand and move inside out on each side too.

Stories, they are such an integral part of life. Thanks for the opportunity to tell some of mine.

Yours, Indoor, I'd love to hear more of them. I have searched the internet at times seeking an oppportunity to watch the great one, Carrill, present. Some things are priceless, son (you make me feel young so I thought I'd return the favor) and your high school experience had to be one of them.

greybeard
12-29-2007, 11:53 AM
So when did you become aware if Duke basketball?

Summer between 8th and 9th grade, caught varsity coach's eye. He put me on the freshman team, a buddy was into Street and Smith's, the lone magazine at the time that put out a college basketball edition, started meeting some of my high school's luminaries, and then Art showed up at my high school. Remember seeing Mullins and Art on TV. Mullins sticks out in my mind much more than Art from that game. Amazing the things a guy remembers.

Oh, add Jimmy V to that mix. Saw him play for his old man when I was a freshman and he was a senior. He was okay, not great, that game. He could preen though, I remember him checking out our cheerleaders and perusing the stands more then shooting during warm ups. Amazing the things a guy remembers. Only saw Larry play once; Brent's old man took me along to the last game of the Olympic trials; it was held at St Johns. Don't remember much about the game. Remember being at the hotel where the players were staying. Bad News and Staleworth were sitting at the counter. Bad News pointed at this iced cake with a slice or two out of it and said to the waitress, I'll have that. She started to pick up a cake knife, Bad News interrupts, "No, I'll have that, all of it." The things . . . . Later.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-29-2007, 04:48 PM
Summer between 8th and 9th grade, caught varsity coach's eye. He put me on the freshman team, a buddy was into Street and Smith's, the lone magazine at the time that put out a college basketball edition, started meeting some of my high school's luminaries, and then Art showed up at my high school. Remember seeing Mullins and Art on TV. Mullins sticks out in my mind much more than Art from that game. Amazing the things a guy remembers.

Oh, add Jimmy V to that mix. Saw him play for his old man when I was a freshman and he was a senior. He was okay, not great, that game. He could preen though, I remember him checking out our cheerleaders and perusing the stands more then shooting during warm ups. Amazing the things a guy remembers. Only saw Larry play once; Brent's old man took me along to the last game of the Olympic trials; it was held at St Johns. Don't remember much about the game. Remember being at the hotel where the players were staying. Bad News and Staleworth were sitting at the counter. Bad News pointed at this iced cake with a slice or two out of it and said to the waitress, I'll have that. She started to pick up a cake knife, Bad News interrupts, "No, I'll have that, all of it." The things . . . . Later.

One of the most interesting ways to get to know people is to ask when they discovered basketball whether it's a particular school they follow or the game in general.

Where I grew up the availability of basketball games on TV was a major break through. Even though we were a "Duke family," I remember staying up to watch the 1957 black and white grainy looking game between UNC and Kansas for the NCAA title. Each year when the ACC tournament was being played, most people had to resort to their radios, but TV soon became the medium. Somehow we were allowed to watch the ACC tournament on TV during school. Once Vic Bubas was hired, our family drive down to Durham for football and basketball games.... State, Carolina, others. Tickets for games in Indoor Stadium were $2.50 per ticket, sold for individual games, not much said about buying season's tickets. Football tickets were $4.50. I don't remember which game was the first basketball game our family went to, but I do remember Art Heyman. We would go to see him play in Durham and we'd go to see him play when Duke came to WS to play Wake Forest. (This was the era of Dave Budd, Len Chappell and yes, Billy Packer.) As many outstanding players as we've seen wear the Duke uniform over the years, none have had the bigger than life presence Artie did when he played at Duke. Man, could he shoot! In many games he looked like a shooting machine and a rebounding machine all in one. Once Jeff Mullins was on the varsity, too, it truly was magical to see Duke play. The atmosphere for many games felt like history in the making. No other coach got as much from Artie as Vic Bubas did. Artie graduated in the spring before I enrolled, but Jeff was still there for a great senior season. Verga enrolled along with Bob Reidy that same fall. Steve Vacendack was on the varsity. I remember junior year being in Dr. William Hayes "Suitcase" Simpson's poli sci class with Bob Reidy. Whenever Dr. Simpson greeted Bob before class, it was "Ready, Reidy?" It was a heady time to be at Duke! I loved every minute of it!

Jim3k
12-29-2007, 10:53 PM
I remember junior year being in Dr. William Hayes "Suitcase" Simpson's poli sci class with Bob Reidy. Whenever Dr. Simpson greeted Bob before class, it was "Ready, Reidy?" It was a heady time to be at Duke! I loved every minute of it!

Thread highjack: Ahh...Suitcase Simpson. Lifesaver senior year when I was short some units for graduation that spring. Let me add late. Clearly a great man. :D

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-29-2007, 11:04 PM
Thread highjack: Ahh...Suitcase Simpson. Lifesaver senior year when I was short some units for graduation that spring. Let me add late. Clearly a great man. :D

Yes, despite the jokes students made about him, Dr. Simpson was exceptional in ways that often went unnoticed. He taught my dad (Class of 1933). On one occasion during my student days when my dad was with me, we saw Dr. Simpson. Not only did he remember my dad's name, he remembered his final grade!

3rd Dukie
12-30-2007, 12:53 PM
from http://espn.go.com/magazine/curry_20011217.html
Indeed, in that '66 NCAA semifinal tussle at College Park, Md. between the No. 1 and No.2 ranked teams, the outcome turned on which significant player -- Larry Conley of Kentucky (yeah, that Larry Conley, the TV broadcaster) or Bob Verga of Duke -- could recover more completely from similarly severe cases of the flu. Verga, the Devils' leading scorer all season, had lost five pounds the week of the championship; Conley, the 'Cats' exquisite playmaker, was running a 102 degree fever and breathing over a vaporizer the night before the game.

Came the penultimate evening, however, Verga could manage only two baskets while Conley could grab a defensive rebound, race the length of the court and score to give Kentucky a seven-point lead with a minute left. The Wildcats -- despite somebody named Pat Riley having fouled out -- clinched their victory.:(

Blue,

Thanks for the clarification/correction. That is not my recollection, but sometimes many, many things are not as they seem in my recollection. This seems to be the final word. However, Conley and I joked about this issue, possibly not specifically enough, several times.

Good stuff. Thanks again.

3rd Dukie
12-30-2007, 01:14 PM
I was in Jr. High School at that time and was unaware that UNC or Duke existed.

Several years later, Brent Glass, a teammate of mine who was and remains quite close to Larry told me of the fight and, if I remember correctly, also told me that the two started fighting in high school.

Some interesting facts I've mentioned here before. One of the best players in my high school's history, Brian McSweeney, followed Larry to UNC and captained the team Dean's first or second year, when Billy was a sophomore. When I was a freshman, Heyman dropped by the gym at my school to chat with our coach. He shot around a bit. Good thing he could handle and was tough as nails. He couldn't shoot worth a damn as far as I could see.

When Heyman and Larry were seniors, we had an all county guard, Tommy Pearsall, who was as quick as Larry, or so "they" all said, and went on to be a three time first team Little All American at Albright College in Pa. His kid brother Steve played with me and Brent (actually me and Brent watched him) and went on to captain U of P. Two of the guys on that team went on to play for UConn and another for U of Georgia.

Tommy played in the backcourt with a guy named Bobby Gottlieb, whose son, Doug, everybody knows. Bobby played freshman ball with Lucas, Havlechek, and Knight at Ohio State, went on to coach division 1, and now runs a development program for college prospects in SoCal. His other son is an assistant at Cal.

Lots of good ball played back on the Island in those days, too bad not by me.

Grey,

Great stories. Thanks. My brother was at "the fight". I want to get his perspective and memories.

Thanks again.

Tappan Zee Devil
12-30-2007, 02:20 PM
Thread highjack: Ahh...Suitcase Simpson. Lifesaver senior year when I was short some units for graduation that spring. Let me add late. Clearly a great man. :D

Ahh --- Suitcase Simpon.. I vividly remember taking Poli. Sci. from him. I was seated between Wes Chesson and Marcel Courtillet with Dick Biddle on the other side of Wes (seating was alphabetical). All quizes and exams were on Fridays of away football games (the football team thus had excused absences) and Suitcase referred to the football players as "my gladiators".
However, I did actually learn a lot from him that semester.

Jim

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-30-2007, 03:22 PM
Ahh --- Suitcase Simpon.. I vividly remember taking Poli. Sci. from him. I was seated between Wes Chesson and Marcel Courtillet with Dick Biddle on the other side of Wes (seating was alphabetical). All quizes and exams were on Fridays of away football games (the football team thus had excused absences) and Suitcase referred to the football players as "my gladiators".
However, I did actually learn a lot from him that semester.

Jim
Since we've turned down memory lane, did you take Dr. Woody's class on the history of the south? Or "Hog" Lewis's class called "Guns and Boats"? As I recall, Dr. Lewis was known for his miniature train collection. Also in the history department was a professor known as "Dirt Farmer," from the mid west. Don't remember his name. I was about to overlook "Ma" Cheek in poli sci!

ricks68
12-30-2007, 05:31 PM
I showed up on campus just after Mullins graduated. One day, I went to my mailbox to discover that Jay Buckley's draft card was delivered to it. Since I wasn't of age at the time, I thought of changing the 6' 11 to 5' 11 and using it. It might have worked back home, but not anywhere in the ACC area for sure.

I also stayed one Summer School session and played 2nd base for the intramural softball team that was made up of the bball players. Mike Lewis was the pitcher, Vacendak the catcher, and Kolodziej at first base. I think Kennedy was at short, but it might have been another bball player. Kolodziej and I became friendly, and we took a road trip together with the guys to the beach. Fun time for a rising soph.

I actually didn't "play" second base. I just sat down on it, as no one could even come close to hitting Lewis' pitches. He was one powerful stud.

Another few notes:

Marin averaged about 10 rebs. a game to go along with his wonderful shooting touch. His favorite shot was from the right corner using the backboard, as he was able to create an angle being left handed. Note that it would also be a three pointer today.

I don't think Verga would have been a problem for Coach K, as he was not a discipline problem. He was a loner that just appeared to be. In fact, he was the only starter allowed to play in a game due to discipline violations by the other players just after Xmas/New Years. I think it was a game against Penn. (Correct me on that, Greybeard, if that's not entirely right.) His outside shooting was outstanding. He took a few steps over the halfcourt line on some shots and bingo. He scored 38, I think, in that one, with most coming from way outside---and they only counted for 2 points. If the 3-point shot was around and with an extra year of eligibility, he definitely would have been the man to beat.

For those that never saw Vacendak play, I can understand the lean towards Wojo. Wojo was almost a carbon copy of Vacendak, in reality, but just a notch less skilled and less stocky. Vacendak songlehandedly broke the famous "UCLA press" two games in a row. He could dribble through anybody. He also dove on the floor with the best of them and was the high scorer in a number of games with Verga and Marin present. Coach K would have loved him.

And yep, we probably would have been in the finals of the FF if Verga had not been sick. He was replaced by Tony Barone. At 5'8" (maybe) and a one-handed shot he used to launch from his chest, he was no match for Rupp's Runts (a bogus nickname, as the only true "runt" was their 6'5" center). And Mike Lewis was actually about 6'7".

I was at the game in College Park, and I can tell you that we would have had a chance at beating Texas Western, as we matched up pretty well with them with a healthy Verga in the game. But only a chance. No one had really seen much of TW during the year, as college bball wasn't televised much back then, and they were located way out in the West Texas desert. If you were at the FF, you could see how good they really were. The smallest players could dunk the ball during warm-ups, and Big Daddy dunked during the game with UK players still hanging onto the ball! And fast. Really, really fast.

ricks

Indoor66
12-30-2007, 06:16 PM
I showed up on campus just after Mullins graduated. One day, I went to my mailbox to discover that Jay Buckley's draft card was delivered to it. Since I wasn't of age at the time, I thought of changing the 6' 11 to 5' 11 and using it. It might have worked back home, but not anywhere in the ACC area for sure.

I also stayed one Summer School session and played 2nd base for the intramural softball team that was made up of the bball players. Mike Lewis was the pitcher, Vacendak the catcher, and Kolodziej at first base. I think Kennedy was at short, but it might have been another bball player. Kolodziej and I became friendly, and we took a road trip together with the guys to the beach. Fun time for a rising soph.

I actually didn't "play" second base. I just sat down on it, as no one could even come close to hitting Lewis' pitches. He was one powerful stud.

Another few notes:

Marin averaged about 10 rebs. a game to go along with his wonderful shooting touch. His favorite shot was from the right corner using the backboard, as he was able to create an angle being left handed. Note that it would also be a three pointer today.

I don't think Verga would have been a problem for Coach K, as he was not a discipline problem. He was a loner that just appeared to be. In fact, he was the only starter allowed to play in a game due to discipline violations by the other players just after Xmas/New Years. I think it was a game against Penn. (Correct me on that, Greybeard, if that's not entirely right.) His outside shooting was outstanding. He took a few steps over the halfcourt line on some shots and bingo. He scored 38, I think, in that one, with most coming from way outside---and they only counted for 2 points. If the 3-point shot was around and with an extra year of eligibility, he definitely would have been the man to beat.

For those that never saw Vacendak play, I can understand the lean towards Wojo. Wojo was almost a carbon copy of Vacendak, in reality, but just a notch less skilled and less stocky. Vacendak songlehandedly broke the famous "UCLA press" two games in a row. He could dribble through anybody. He also dove on the floor with the best of them and was the high scorer in a number of games with Verga and Marin present. Coach K would have loved him.

And yep, we probably would have been in the finals of the FF if Verga had not been sick. He was replaced by Tony Barone. At 5'8" (maybe) and a one-handed shot he used to launch from his chest, he was no match for Rupp's Runts (a bogus nickname, as the only true "runt" was their 6'5" center). And Mike Lewis was actually about 6'7".

I was at the game in College Park, and I can tell you that we would have had a chance at beating Texas Western, as we matched up pretty well with them with a healthy Verga in the game. But only a chance. No one had really seen much of TW during the year, as college bball wasn't televised much back then, and they were located way out in the West Texas desert. If you were at the FF, you could see how good they really were. The smallest players could dunk the ball during warm-ups, and Big Daddy dunked during the game with UK players still hanging onto the ball! And fast. Really, really fast.

ricks

Great post. The Verga game with the suspension was against Penn State.

3rd Dukie
12-30-2007, 09:29 PM
Grey,

Great stories. Thanks. My brother was at "the fight". I want to get his perspective and memories.

Thanks again.

This is my brother's recollection of the fight. As I said, I have no ability to concur or not. He and I would both like to see how this squares with other accounts.

Thanks.

Yes, I was at Cameron the night of the famous fight between Heyman and Brown. It occurred during the game between the Duke and UNC freshmen (at that time freshmen didn't play varsity sports). I couldn't tell you the exact date it occurred, but it was during Heyman's freshman year, so I guess that would put it sometime in 1960-61 (or was it 1959-60?). What I remember is this: I was sitting in the student section, which was on the left side of the court as you came in the front doors of the indoor stadium. The game had been rough and very physical. At one point -- and I don't know the exact cause of the explosion -- Heyman charged Brown, picked him up at about mid-court, carried him running to the far end of the court (the one to my left), and smashed him into the goal support stand. Then all hell broke loose, benches cleared, people poured onto the court etc. I don't remember whether the game was completed or whether it was called at that point.

It would be interesting to see how my recollections square with other people's. After almost a half-century it's possible that some details have become blurred in my memory, but I think I have the basics straight.

Jim3k
12-30-2007, 11:05 PM
It occurred at Duke during Art's (and Larry's) sophomore year. It was toward the end of the game, which Art had dominated, but was still close. Duke won 81-77. Duke had a slight lead and was trying to protect it. Larry was dribbling the ball up the right side with Art shadowing him. As he passed the timeline, Art, aware that Larry might fling one up and knowing that a (non-shooting) foul would stop the clock, halted Larry from behind by bear-hugging him and pulling him to the floor. Larry, unhurt but frustrated all night by Art's defense, stood up, spun and threw a punch. Not sure if it landed hard or not. Donnie Walsh came over and got into it as well. By that time, though, the crowd was on the floor, the players and coaches were off the bench and the student section pretty much lost view of what transpired.

Some of this is recounted in the Heyman section of the Encyclopedia of Duke Basketball, which reports that all three were suspended for the remainder of the season.

One thing is certain. It happened Art's sophomore year. I do not think your brother's account is accurate: (Heyman charged Brown, picked him up at about mid-court, carried him running to the far end of the court (the one to my left), and smashed him into the goal support stand). The bodies did end up down near the UNC bench (in those days the benches were on the baselines), but not near the stanchion. Coach McGuire was accused by some of kicking Duke players while they were on the floor, but I don't think that was ever confirmed. Heyman, at worst, did a bear-hug tackle, which was not designed to injure. Brown would have none of it.

Most of the students had no idea that Heyman and Brown had history that went back to high school. McGuire, however, was still furious Art had changed his commitment from UNC to Duke.

BadgerBarry
12-30-2007, 11:21 PM
watch the fight on Youtube
http://youtube.com/watch?v=DNxqafl6OtI

Jim3k
12-31-2007, 12:10 AM
watch the fight on Youtube
http://youtube.com/watch?v=DNxqafl6OtI

That's very interesting. I remember that the game was not televised (few were), so the league had some difficulty in assessing the penalties since there was no film (that they knew of) and had to rely on the refs' recall of a very fluid series of events. I wonder who shot it and where it's been all these years. This should be in the ACC-Duke-UNC archives somewhere.

However, It does show how our (read 'my') memories have faded.

devildeac
12-31-2007, 07:31 AM
watch the fight on Youtube
http://youtube.com/watch?v=DNxqafl6OtI

Now that a film is available, I wonder if some bakery will give unc some award or unc will now hang a banner for it or give larry a welterweight or middleweight championship belt for his pugilistic 'triumph' over Mr. Heyman :rolleyes:

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 09:16 AM
That's very interesting. I remember that the game was not televised (few were), so the league had some difficulty in assessing the penalties since there was no film (that they knew of) and had to rely on the refs' recall of a very fluid series of events. I wonder who shot it and where it's been all these years. This should be in the ACC-Duke-UNC archives somewhere.

However, It does show how our (read 'my') memories have faded.

The game being discussed was played on February 4, 1961. There had been an offer to televise the game on a national hook up if the game was moved to an afternoon start time, but Eddie Cameron left the tip off at 8P so the game could be carried by a regional hook up.... I think C. D. Chasney had the contract. The evening tip off was supposed to allow fans and alums to get there.... at least until the sleet/snow storm paralyzed travel. The weather helped create a TV big audience for what Vic Bubas called, "the biggest game played in the South."

There was a freshman game that night which featured Jeff Mullins. The game got out of control because of fighting. At the end of the freshman game Carolina had only three players left on the floor. Five players had fouled out and three were ejected for fighting. You can imagine what the atmosphere was like when the varsity came out!

The description of Artie bear hugging Larry is accurate based on game film and Artie's own telling of what happened. Art was to speak at a Durham sports group's luncheon on Monday following the game. He took the game film and a projector to show what happened.

According to Art, it was Doug Moe who infuriated him. During the Carolina game played in the finals of the Dixie Classic earlier in the season, Art had made 11 points in about five minutes. Frank McGuire then assigned Doug Moe to guard Art. Art was able to score only five points during the remainder of the game. (Going into that game, Art's average had been 26 points per game for the first nine games.) Carolina won by 5 points. Art's reaction to being shut down like that was to tear Moe's picture out of the paper and stick it up on the wall in his room. Doug Moe's picture was the last thing he looked at as he left his room to head the then Duke Indoor Stadium to prepare for the game with Carolina.

During the now infamous game, Doug would spit in Art's face every time he shot the ball. Art warned Doug that he (Art) had a cold and was going give him something nasty if he kept on spitting. This sort of exchange went on the first half. As the players exited at halftime, another crazy thing happened. In the 60s, both teams exited through the same area. One of the male Carolina cheerleaders was nearby and was "whacking his players on the butt as they ran off." (Art's words) The cheerleader inadvertently hit Heyman as he ran past. Art turned around and hit him back and went on into the dressing room. Those who lived in Durham years ago remember a local attorney named Blackwell "Dog" Brogden. "Dog" was a staunch Carolina fan and was sitted in the end zone where the teams exited. "Dog" saw Art hit the cheerleader and filed assault charges against Art...... an event which got in the national news.... before the charges were dropped.

When "the fight" broke out, the Carolina bench emptied, but few left the Duke bench. According to Art the fact that his teammates didn't come to defend him bothered him. When he asked them why they didn't come to help him, the answer he got was something like "It's not our nature."

If you're wondering about the sources of this information, I've relied on Art Chansky (Blue Blood) and Al Featherston (Game of My Life), both of whom interviewed extensively as they researched their books. Featherson was an institution among the sportswriters in the central part of the state until a new editor came to the Durham Herald and fired many of the veterans reporters.

greybeard
12-31-2007, 10:27 AM
Great stuff. Actually, the fight between the two didn't seem from the video to be all that. The aftermath was.

A little known fact. While Larry spent his teen years in the cloistered world of Long Beach, Long Island, he actually grew up in Bensonhurst, which is not on Long Island according to true Brooklynites, but rather is a largely Italian/Jewish enclave in South Brooklyn just a few miles from Coney Island. Bensonhurst's claim to fame is that it was/is the home of gangsters; in Larry's youth, one Joseph Columbo and his crew for starters.

Larry probably had to fight his way home from school on every Saint whatever day. Just the way it was in the neighborhood, or so my old man used to tell. By the time I came around, the first thing we did was make friends with the biggest Italian kid on the block. Joey Losie, just saying the name makes me feel safe. ;)

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 11:36 AM
Great stuff. Actually, the fight between the two didn't seem from the video to be all that. The aftermath was.

A little known fact. While Larry spent his teen years in the cloistered world of Long Beach, Long Island, he actually grew up in Bensonhurst, which is not on Long Island according to true Brooklynites, but rather is a largely Italian/Jewish enclave in South Brooklyn just a few miles from Coney Island. Bensonhurst's claim to fame is that it was/is the home of gangsters; in Larry's youth, one Joseph Columbo and his crew for starters.

Larry probably had to fight his way home from school on every Saint whatever day. Just the way it was in the neighborhood, or so my old man used to tell. By the time I came around, the first thing we did was make friends with the biggest Italian kid on the block. Joey Losie, just saying the name makes me feel safe. ;)

The camera making the game film was up in the rafters and not very mobile in terms of catching events the way later technology has been able to do. Teams relied on game films they made themselves then, not TV footage. The suspension of Heyman from league contests for the rest of the regular season was announced just as the team loaded the bus to go to WS to play Wake. Hayman was called to Eddie Cameron's and told of the suspension as the bus loaded. Artie demanded that Duke back him by appealing of the ruling. (Art fouled out, but Larry was not been ejected from the game. Larry and Donnie Walch were not suspended until the review of the film was completed.) Artie had to threaten to leave Duke immediately to get Eddie off the dime. Once that appeal call was made, Artie hitched a ride in (assistant) Coach Fred Shabel's car with Shabel and a reporter from Sports Illustrated. Even though Artie returned to the line up for non conferenece games that season and for the ACC tournament (winner take all for NCAA tourney... a feature demanded by Everett Case, NC State's legendary coach at the time the ACC replaced the old Southern Conference.), Duke had lost its rhythm and chemistry which had been so potent. Duke beat Wake in the ACC tourney final and went on to lose to St. Joe's in the Eastern Regional Final game. Heyman has said repeatedly that not being able to play during the rest of the final stretch of the regular season cost Duke a national championship. I think he may be right!

There was another noteworthy fight or injury during the 1959-60 season when Artie played on the Blue Imp team. Duke and Carolina played more than two times that season. Huge crowds began to attend the frosh games just to see Artie play. In a game played in Siler City, NC, a neutral court, Artie gave a stellar performance once he accepted the stern advice Coach Bucky Waters gave him before the game. Duke was winning the game when near the end of the game, Deiter Krouse "cold cocked" Artie. This hit came out of nowhere. Bucky got so angry that he grabbed Tar Baby Coach Ken Rosemond by the lapels and began hammering him up against and on to the scorer's table. Bucky had Rosemond bouncing on the controls for the scoreboard causing random scoreboard lights to go off and on so rapidly that it looked as if the scoreboard was about to explode. Artie was taken to the hospital for treatment.

For those who only saw Vic Bubas's manner as restrained, the same season during which "the fight" occurred, there was an incident between Coach Bubas and the infamous Frank McGuire.

Duke students, creative in their welcome for visitors to Indoor Stadium even then, would mimic McGuire by wearing suits, slicking back their hair, then continue to pull at their ties and cuff links, signature mannerisms of McGuire who was known to have a taste for fine clothes and expensive entertaining. Bubas has "stolen" McGuire's gem of a recruit just prior to school opening. McGuire avoided making public statements which gave away his extreme dislike of all things Duke. Back in those days, ACC teams did not provide complimentary game films for scouting to non conference foes, only to other conference teams.

SOOOOO Duke was scheduled to play Navy in Greensboro. McGuire was friends with the Navy coach. When the teams played Navy knew what Duke would do, what play, etc. At the end of the game Coach Bubas saw McGuire standing nearby, fiddling with his tie. McGuire is quoted as then saying, "I love you and Art....." Coach Bubas responded with "Frank, you are full of ^$%^$%^$%^$%..... I'm going to clock you!" It was Artie who stepped between them to separate them, just as he done when McGuire and Arte's step dad were about to get into it during a recruiting visit to CH.

There was so much brewing behind the scenes during the early days of the ACC. The stories make for some of the best "yarns." Enough time has passed for some of the details to fade, but the intensity and competition were there from the beginning. Once Artie was on the scene, Duke - Carolina games in the early 60s began to draw so many from the press corps prior to big games that Duke began to use Card gym for the media. When ESPN decided to offer the Duke - Carolina game in their first 360 coverage of a sporting event just a few years ago, it was just the next step in the media's fascination with the most storied rivalry in college sports.

devildeac
12-31-2007, 02:39 PM
The camera making the game film was up in the rafters and not very mobile in terms of catching events the way later technology has been able to do. Teams relied on game films they made themselves then, not TV footage. The suspension of Heyman from league contests for the rest of the regular season was announced just as the team loaded the bus to go to WS to play Wake. Hayman was called to Eddie Cameron's and told of the suspension as the bus loaded. Artie demanded that Duke back him by appealing of the ruling. (Art fouled out, but Larry was not been ejected from the game. Larry and Donnie Walch were not suspended until the review of the film was completed.) Artie had to threaten to leave Duke immediately to get Eddie off the dime. Once that appeal call was made, Artie hitched a ride in (assistant) Coach Fred Shabel's car with Shabel and a reporter from Sports Illustrated. Even though Artie returned to the line up for non conferenece games that season and for the ACC tournament (winner take all for NCAA tourney... a feature demanded by Everett Case, NC State's legendary coach at the time the ACC replaced the old Southern Conference.), Duke had lost its rhythm and chemistry which had been so potent. Duke beat Wake in the ACC tourney final and went on to lose to St. Joe's in the Eastern Regional Final game. Heyman has said repeatedly that not being able to play during the rest of the final stretch of the regular season cost Duke a national championship. I think he may be right!

There was another noteworthy fight or injury during the 1959-60 season when Artie played on the Blue Imp team. Duke and Carolina played more than two times that season. Huge crowds began to attend the frosh games just to see Artie play. In a game played in Siler City, NC, a neutral court, Artie gave a stellar performance once he accepted the stern advice Coach Bucky Waters gave him before the game. Duke was winning the game when near the end of the game, Deiter Krouse "cold cocked" Artie. This hit came out of nowhere. Bucky got so angry that he grabbed Tar Baby Coach Ken Rosemond by the lapels and began hammering him up against and on to the scorer's table. Bucky had Rosemond bouncing on the controls for the scoreboard causing random scoreboard lights to go off and on so rapidly that it looked as if the scoreboard was about to explode. Artie was taken to the hospital for treatment.

For those who only saw Vic Bubas's manner as restrained, the same season during which "the fight" occurred, there was an incident between Coach Bubas and the infamous Frank McGuire.

Duke students, creative in their welcome for visitors to Indoor Stadium even then, would mimic McGuire by wearing suits, slicking back their hair, then continue to pull at their ties and cuff links, signature mannerisms of McGuire who was known to have a taste for fine clothes and expensive entertaining. Bubas has "stolen" McGuire's gem of a recruit just prior to school opening. McGuire avoided making public statements which gave away his extreme dislike of all things Duke. Back in those days, ACC teams did not provide complimentary game films for scouting to non conference foes, only to other conference teams.

SOOOOO Duke was scheduled to play Navy in Greensboro. McGuire was friends with the Navy coach. When the teams played Navy knew what Duke would do, what play, etc. At the end of the game Coach Bubas saw McGuire standing nearby, fiddling with his tie. McGuire is quoted as then saying, "I love you and Art....." Coach Bubas responded with "Frank, you are full of ^$%^$%^$%^$%..... I'm going to clock you!" It was Artie who stepped between them to separate them, just as he done when McGuire and Arte's step dad were about to get into it during a recruiting visit to CH.

There was so much brewing behind the scenes during the early days of the ACC. The stories make for some of the best "yarns." Enough time has passed for some of the details to fade, but the intensity and competition were there from the beginning. Once Artie was on the scene, Duke - Carolina games in the early 60s began to draw so many from the press corps prior to big games that Duke began to use Card gym for the media. When ESPN decided to offer the Duke - Carolina game in their first 360 coverage of a sporting event just a few years ago, it was just the next step in the media's fascination with the most storied rivalry in college sports.

This stuff is GREAT reading for us not-that-old Blue Devils:D . Thanks for sharing with us! And OZZIE and I thought we(Duke) only started hating unc in the early 70's(chortle, chortle).

greybeard
12-31-2007, 03:06 PM
Terrific stuff devildeac, really terrific. Storytelling is such a rich part of life. These stories take the plastic off the sofa, so to speak, and give such depth and insight as to why storied characters and events are, well, storied. Thanks!

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 03:20 PM
This stuff is GREAT reading for us not-that-old Blue Devils:D . Thanks for sharing with us! And OZZIE and I thought we(Duke) only started hating unc in the early 70's(chortle, chortle).

I've starting telling you guys what I know so that the great stories won't be forgotten. My dad's stories about his experiences on campus (Class of '33) made my own experience much richer. I check the facts with independent sources first since eyewitnesses are are known to confuse their memories with the actual events.

If you love hearing about Duke's sports history, you'd enjoy Art Chansky's Blue Blood or perhaps Al Featherson's The Game of My Life.

If you guys were around in the early 70's, our paths may have crossed before I graduated the first time.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 03:43 PM
This stuff is GREAT reading for us not-that-old Blue Devils:D . Thanks for sharing with us! And OZZIE and I thought we(Duke) only started hating unc in the early 70's(chortle, chortle).

If you like the stories shared on this thread, go to the thread titled "K'ville is open" for some more. Getting back in Cameron for the Cornell game next Sunday may remind me of some more special events and stories from the other great eras. I'll share football stories as we work on the improvement of that program.

One of the things I'd dearly love to see is not only the return of the Victory Bell to where it really belongs, but actually using it between football games with Carolina. For some reason when the bell has been in Durham, it goes into a closet or store room never to be seen until the next Carolina football game. The Victory Bell should be at every home football or basketball game and it should be rung when we score. Wouldn't you like to ring the Victory Bell?

3rd Dukie
12-31-2007, 06:04 PM
It occurred at Duke during Art's (and Larry's) sophomore year. It was toward the end of the game, which Art had dominated, but was still close. Duke won 81-77. Duke had a slight lead and was trying to protect it. Larry was dribbling the ball up the right side with Art shadowing him. As he passed the timeline, Art, aware that Larry might fling one up and knowing that a (non-shooting) foul would stop the clock, halted Larry from behind by bear-hugging him and pulling him to the floor. Larry, unhurt but frustrated all night by Art's defense, stood up, spun and threw a punch. Not sure if it landed hard or not. Donnie Walsh came over and got into it as well. By that time, though, the crowd was on the floor, the players and coaches were off the bench and the student section pretty much lost view of what transpired.

Some of this is recounted in the Heyman section of the Encyclopedia of Duke Basketball, which reports that all three were suspended for the remainder of the season.

One thing is certain. It happened Art's sophomore year. I do not think your brother's account is accurate: (Heyman charged Brown, picked him up at about mid-court, carried him running to the far end of the court (the one to my left), and smashed him into the goal support stand). The bodies did end up down near the UNC bench (in those days the benches were on the baselines), but not near the stanchion. Coach McGuire was accused by some of kicking Duke players while they were on the floor, but I don't think that was ever confirmed. Heyman, at worst, did a bear-hug tackle, which was not designed to injure. Brown would have none of it.

Most of the students had no idea that Heyman and Brown had history that went back to high school. McGuire, however, was still furious Art had changed his commitment from UNC to Duke.

Jim, we are hoping someone can explain or at recall the incident on my brother's mind. Any help would be greatly appreciated. My brother and I are both amazed at the level of detail in so many peoples' recollections.

"I've been thinking some more about the famous fight at Cameron. I've about decided that I'm confusing two different events. One was the Heyman-Brown smackdown: according to the commentator whose memories are apparently sharper than mine, this encounter occurred during a varsity game in Heyman's sophomore year. I think I was at that game -- I know I was at at least one when a riot broke out during a Carolina game, McGuire acted like an ^$%^$%^$%^$%^$%^$%^$% etc. It would help to know which year was Heyman's freshman year: if it was 1959-60, then I was still at Duke during his sophomore year. If it was 1960-61, I wasn't, since I left in summer 1961.

All that being said, I still know that I was present at a freshman game in which the events I described yesterday took place. Maybe the protagonists weren't Heyman and Brown -- I couldn't swear to that -- but I have a vivid memory of somebody picking up somebody at center court, running with him to the far goal, slamming him into the stanchion, and setting off a riot. And I'm sure this happened during a freshman, not varsity, game with UNC.

So I guess some detective work is in order. Again, I'm amazed at the detailed recollections of so many people."

Thanks again!

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 06:34 PM
Jim, we are hoping someone can explain or at recall the incident on my brother's mind. Any help would be greatly appreciated. My brother and I are both amazed at the level of detail in so many peoples' recollections.

"I've been thinking some more about the famous fight at Cameron. I've about decided that I'm confusing two different events. One was the Heyman-Brown smackdown: according to the commentator whose memories are apparently sharper than mine, this encounter occurred during a varsity game in Heyman's sophomore year. I think I was at that game -- I know I was at at least one when a riot broke out during a Carolina game, McGuire acted like an ^$%^$%^$%^$%^$%^$%^$% etc. It would help to know which year was Heyman's freshman year: if it was 1959-60, then I was still at Duke during his sophomore year. If it was 1960-61, I wasn't, since I left in summer 1961.

All that being said, I still know that I was present at a freshman game in which the events I described yesterday took place. Maybe the protagonists weren't Heyman and Brown -- I couldn't swear to that -- but I have a vivid memory of somebody picking up somebody at center court, running with him to the far goal, slamming him into the stanchion, and setting off a riot. And I'm sure this happened during a freshman, not varsity, game with UNC.

So I guess some detective work is in order. Again, I'm amazed at the detailed recollections of so many people."

Thanks again!

FYI Art Heyman enrolled in 1959 and played on the Blue Imps for the 1959-60 season. His first season on the varsity was the 1960-61 season. In the various sources I've used to track down details, I haven't read about the freshman game you mentioned. Sounds like you were describing an event in one of three times the Duke and Carolina freshmen teams played that year... Durham, Chapel Hill and Siler City. In the game played in Siler City, Deiter Krouse came at Art when Art was at the top of the key, but didn't see Krouse. Krouse had his fist clenched and drilled Art so hard he fell to the floor. Art had to be taken to the local hospital for stitches in his mouth. Not surprisingly, Dieter's nickname was "Killer."

There was a bit of a riot which took ten minutes to clear during the second half of the varsity contest on February 4, 1961.... "the fight." There was lots of fighting in the freshman game which came first. Carolina had only three players left on the floor at the end of the game.

I look forward to reading more about the scene you witnessed!
GO DUKE!

Carlos
12-31-2007, 08:12 PM
If you love hearing about Duke's sports history, you'd enjoy Art Chansky's Blue Blood or perhaps Al Featherson's The Game of My Life.



I can't get myself to read anything that Art Chansky penned... just can't do it. The guy is too much of a schmuck.

I can however recommend Feather's other book - Tobacco Road which is a great read as is Jim Sumner's Tales from the Duke Blue Devils Hardwood
.

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 08:47 PM
I can't get myself to read anything that Art Chansky penned... just can't do it. The guy is too much of a schmuck.

I can however recommend Feather's other book - Tobacco Road which is a great read as is Jim Sumner's Tales from the Duke Blue Devils Hardwood
.

There was a time I would have agreed with you. Chansky actually does a remarkably good job telling about the Duke - Carolina rivalry.... surprisingly balanced. Check it out from the public library, then you'll have no money invested.

jimsumner
12-31-2007, 09:11 PM
Let me add a bit to the Heyman-UNC 1961 fight. In 1959 Art Heyman was all set to go to UNC on Frank McGuire's NYC Underground Railroad. At the official visit, McGuire said something that set off Heyman's step-father. The stepfather became enraged, the visit was terminated and UNC was off the table. Apparently, step-father thought that McGuire denigrated Heyman's abilities.

As fate would have it, that same week the school eight miles down the road from Chapel Hill hired a new coach, guy by the name of Bubas. Being no fool, the newbie saw an opportunity and swooped in for the kill. Heyman told me that his step-father made the call for Duke, in large part because of the potential to get maximum payback to McGuire.

So there was some bad blood going in.

McGuire despised Duke. The feeling was mutual. Add that in.

Heyman was no shrinking violet. He was strong, tough, and more than willing to mix it up with guys like Doug Moe, who returned the favor with enthusiasm. ACC hoops was pretty physical in those days. That's an understatement.

On that fateful February '61 day Heyman and a (male) UNC cheerleader got tangled up at the end of the first half and Heyman was actually later charged with assault; nothing came of it.

There's no question it was a hard foul and no question that Brown hit first. Given that Heyman is eight inches taller than Brown and probably outweighed him by 30-40 pounds and given that the game was at Duke, this may not have been Brown's best option. Brown was a tough customer but had Walsh and the rest of the UNC team not immediately jumped Heyman, I suspect Art could have deposited Brown in the trash can face first. Metaphorically speaking, of course.

ACC commissioner Jim Weaver was responsive to Heyman and Duke's appeals. The suspension was reduced and Heyman actually only missed three games.

Duke's win over UNC gave them a 16-1 record. The went 4-4 in the rest of the regular season and lost the ACC Tournament title game to Wake Forest. This was the good, ole days, so Duke at 22-6 and ranked 9th in the country, stayed at home. Heyman maintains that his suspension and the controversy fatally disrupted Duke's chemistry and cost the team a legit shot at the NCAA title. This might be a bit much but Heyman did join a senior-dominated team that returned virtually everyone from the previous season's ACC Tournament champs, so who knows?

3rd Dukie
12-31-2007, 09:25 PM
FYI Art Heyman enrolled in 1959 and played on the Blue Imps for the 1959-60 season. His first season on the varsity was the 1960-61 season. In the various sources I've used to track down details, I haven't read about the freshman game you mentioned. Sounds like you were describing an event in one of three times the Duke and Carolina freshmen teams played that year... Durham, Chapel Hill and Siler City. In the game played in Siler City, Deiter Krouse came at Art when Art was at the top of the key, but didn't see Krouse. Krouse had his fist clenched and drilled Art so hard he fell to the floor. Art had to be taken to the local hospital for stitches in his mouth. Not surprisingly, Dieter's nickname was "Killer."

There was a bit of a riot which took ten minutes to clear during the second half of the varsity contest on February 4, 1961.... "the fight." There was lots of fighting in the freshman game which came first. Carolina had only three players left on the floor at the end of the game.

I look forward to reading more about the scene you witnessed!
GO DUKE!

Devil,

That is great! I do remember my brother saying something about the other fellow having a German name. That might be it. Thanks so much for your help and for bearing with us. I'll see what he remembers about that. Should I assume the Blue Imps were the freshmen?

Devil in the Blue Dress
12-31-2007, 09:42 PM
Devil,

That is great! I do remember my brother saying something about the other fellow having a German name. That might be it. Thanks so much for your help and for bearing with us. I'll see what he remembers about that. Should I assume the Blue Imps were the freshmen?

Yes, the Duke freshman team was called the Blue Imps; the Carolina freshman team was called the Tar Babies.

What is your brother's class year? I'm looking forward to your next post!

3rd Dukie
12-31-2007, 10:39 PM
Yes, the Duke freshman team was called the Blue Imps; the Carolina freshman team was called the Tar Babies.

What is your brother's class year? I'm looking forward to your next post!

My brother graduated in '60 and stayed one more year for his MA. My second brother was in the class of '65. I am waiting to hear back from him about your latest post. Where in the blue blazes do you find this stuff? Farris, my brother, and I are both just doing this on the fly. He was my real connection to Duke hoops, and his roommate got me tix for the '66 FF at Cole Field House. Our collective recollections are obviously a tad foggy. Thanks again for your interest. If I recall correctly, when this group first got together on compuserv, I was one of the older folks involved. Glad to see things have changed so much. The broader perspective and recollections are wonderful.
I do have to say one thing about Heyman. When I moved to NYC in 1974, he had a bar called King Arthur's Court, in the east 40's, I think. I was thrilled to meet him, and he was a total jerk that night. I think he was well into his cups, and I have heard other stories about encounters with him that confirm and refute my experience. I was at Tracy J's a year or so ago, but he wasn't there. I hope he has resolved some of his demons and is living peacefully. He was absolutely my idol when I was in high school. The only game I ever saw at CIS - I did not attend Duke - was his final home game against Billy, the Kangaroo, Cunningham. I think Art had about 44 that game, and it may have been his career best. My hope is to attend another game some time soon. As I recall, Cunningham was a soph and was having problems in his geography class (maybe it was geology). There were signs all over campus and CIS wishing him "well" in his academic endeavors. I was blown away. Buckley, Art, Joe Schmidt ( I think), Mullins and I cannot recall the 5th starter for that game.

jimsumner
12-31-2007, 10:50 PM
Heyman had 40 points and 24 rebounds in his home finale v. UNC. Buzzy Harrison was the other starter that season. He teamed with Fred Schmidt in a backcourt primarily designed to stay out of the way of a Heyman-Mullins-Buckley front court that combined for 56 points and 29 rebounds per game.

Jim3k
01-01-2008, 12:45 AM
Jim, we are hoping someone can explain or at recall the incident on my brother's mind. Any help would be greatly appreciated. My brother and I are both amazed at the level of detail in so many peoples' recollections.

"I've been thinking some more about the famous fight at Cameron. I've about decided that I'm confusing two different events. One was the Heyman-Brown smackdown: according to the commentator whose memories are apparently sharper than mine, this encounter occurred during a varsity game in Heyman's sophomore year. I think I was at that game -- I know I was at at least one when a riot broke out during a Carolina game, McGuire acted like an ^$%^$%^$%^$%^$%^$%^$% etc. It would help to know which year was Heyman's freshman year: if it was 1959-60, then I was still at Duke during his sophomore year. If it was 1960-61, I wasn't, since I left in summer 1961.

All that being said, I still know that I was present at a freshman game in which the events I described yesterday took place. Maybe the protagonists weren't Heyman and Brown -- I couldn't swear to that -- but I have a vivid memory of somebody picking up somebody at center court, running with him to the far goal, slamming him into the stanchion, and setting off a riot. And I'm sure this happened during a freshman, not varsity, game with UNC.

So I guess some detective work is in order. Again, I'm amazed at the detailed recollections of so many people."

Thanks again!

3rd Dukie -- neither you nor your brother should feel badly about a 47-year-old recollection. I happened to be a freshman in 1960-61, so it was all new to me. My own recollection seems to have failed a bit with respect to where on the court the whole thing began. And, it happened so quickly that anyone's perception would be a bit flummoxed. In fact, the student section, though slightly raised, was really too low to get a good aspect of the area, not to mention 10 players and 2 refs out there blocking the view somewhat. I am pleased that Devil in tdhe Blue Dress was able to confirm the bear hug start of it all.

As for the fresman game, I'm pretty much at a loss. I tend to think I must have been there, since those were my classmates. And I also vaguely remember a game where some opponent was left with only 3 players on the floor. From my own recollection, I couldn't tell you who the opponent was or if I saw it. I may simply have walked over from the freshman dorms (Kilgo) to catch the varsity game.

As for slamming someone into the stanchion, I can't help you. They way it is described would constitute a crime, not a foul. That would have attracted a lot of attention, no matter who the perpetrator was. I've never heard the story before, so while I won't say it's false, I will suggest it is the product of a memory enhanced by time. Neither Eddie Cameron nor Vic Bubas would have allowed such abuse to an opponent. Neither would Bucky, who was a pretty strict taskmaster as the frosh coach. I'm pretty sure such a player would have been suspended, if not expelled. It would not have gone unnoticed.

devildeac
01-01-2008, 08:44 AM
Terrific stuff devildeac, really terrific. Storytelling is such a rich part of life. These stories take the plastic off the sofa, so to speak, and give such depth and insight as to why storied characters and events are, well, storied. Thanks!

GB,

Unfortunately, it was not my terrific stuff:o , it was Devil in the Blue Dress' story, and I, like you, was merely sitting down and absorbing ALL the yarns on this thread from folks with longer, richer memories than I have from days of Devils past. So please express your gratitude to the correct posters for taking their time and effort to scour their memories and relate their tales here. Thank you, too for being an appreciative, valuable contributor here. I hope this sounds and appears to be as genuine as I have tried to make it and not pedantic in any manner. My ears remain open for many more untold recollections.

Devil in the Blue Dress
01-01-2008, 09:00 AM
GB,

Unfortunately, it was not my terrific stuff:o , it was Devil in the Blue Dress' story, and I, like you, was merely sitting down and absorbing ALL the yarns on this thread from folks with longer, richer memories than I have from days of Devils past. So please express your gratitude to the correct posters for taking their time and effort to scour their memories and relate their tales here. Thank you, too for being an appreciative, valuable contributor here. I hope this sounds and appears to be as genuine as I have tried to make it and not pedantic in any manner. My ears remain open for many more untold recollections.

Thank you, devildeac! Does your name mean that you also have some sort of tie to Wake Forest?

It's possible that being back in Cameron for the Cornell game may remind me of something else..... actually a story about the KA's at basketball games is sort of creeping back into my memory......

devildeac
01-01-2008, 11:09 AM
Thank you, devildeac! Does your name mean that you also have some sort of tie to Wake Forest?

It's possible that being back in Cameron for the Cornell game may remind me of something else..... actually a story about the KA's at basketball games is sort of creeping back into my memory......

Yes, Duke-76(Trinity) and WFU--81(MD), but only one true loyalty as the one with WFU has rusted a bit with some of their fans' hatred for us over the last several years.

Please, sit down in your most comfortable chair, have a favorite beverage or two and try to recall those KA memories...

Devil in the Blue Dress
01-01-2008, 01:06 PM
Tennessee seems to be holding on in the Outback Bowl. It's just less than a week until I can get back to my seat in Cameron. Memory Lane helps fill the time until the Cornell game.

Here are a couple of nuggets from the past for you to consider adding to your Duke lore.

Jack Marin says that floor slapping was started by Vic Bubas.*


People often thought of Heyman and Marin as something of an odd couple. There could hardly have been two more different personalities and styles intent on the same goals. Take a look at these statistics from their senior years. "Compare and contrast" these numbers. (I borrowed "compare and contrast" from old hourly questions.)

Heyman (1963): 24.9 ppg; 10.8 rpg; 46.9 FG%; 69.1 FT%*
Mullins (1964): 24.2 ppg; 8.9 rpg; 48.9 FG%; 82.0 FT%*

*I can't take credit for unearthing this. I found them in Al Featherston's Game of my Life.

Carlos
01-01-2008, 08:03 PM
There was a time I would have agreed with you. Chansky actually does a remarkably good job telling about the Duke - Carolina rivalry.... surprisingly balanced. Check it out from the public library, then you'll have no money invested.

Actually, I have the book in the piles of hardbacks in my house. My father-in-law is a Tar Heel fan and bought it for me as a gift a year or so ago. It remains unopened.

I've seen too much from Mr. Chansky over the years to read his work, even if he watered thins down to appeal to a wider audience. His attacks on Coach K after the Makhtar incident at the ACC Tourney pretty much said it all for me.

sagegrouse
01-01-2008, 09:47 PM
In the Duke-Carolina game at Duke in 1961, I do remember the cheerleader incident clearly (or at least I think so). The Duke team was running off the court either at halftime or the end of the game (towards the locker rooms, which were in the Indoor Stadium corner nearest the tennis courts). A Carolina cheerleader jumped in front of Art to (apparently) taunt him, and Art simply used two hands to move him aside. I was astounded to hear that a Carolina fan had filed charges against Art for assault. Good heavens!! What did he see?

The other events of the evening are still a blur. When a fracas breaks out, I usually observe the least significant events. In this case I was probably watching Frank McGuire come unglued.

However, one earlier post was anachronistic wrt to the Duke post-season in 1960 and 1961. The year in which the team advanced to the regional final was the spring of 1960. I was on campus as a HS senior for Angier Duke weekend and watched the regional semis (Jack Mullen dribbling the ball as time ran out). This was the Howard Hurt team that upset Carolina in the ACC semis and defeated Wake in the finals. It lost to NYU in the regional finals. Art Heyman was a freshman. Art did not win an ACC championship until his senior year, which was Duke's first final four team.

In his soph and junior years, Wake (Len Chappell [sp?]) won the ACC tournament, and, yes, Billy Packer was a guard on the team. So Duke's season concluded with a loss in the ACC tournament.

sagegrouse

Olympic Fan
01-02-2008, 10:43 AM
Don't know how much I can add to this excellent thread, except to confirm a few things and make one or two small corrections:

-- The Heyman-Brown fight game (Feb. 4, 1961) was televised regionally by CD Chesley.

-- The original reporting of the brawl almost totally blamed Heyman for throwing the first punch. The official's report to the ACC office also blamed Heyman for throwing the first punch. Vic Bubas was so upset by the inaccurate reporting that he called a press conference then used his game-film to show reporters over and over that Brown hit first (and, yes, it did connect) and that Walsh cold-cocked Heyman from behind -- then ran away. While Heyman was down, several Carolina plays jumped on him, but he fought his way to his feet and was trying to get to Walsh when hundreds of Duke students piled on the floor. It was a wild scene -- Duke students were fighting Carolina players, the police and each other. The film did clear Frank McGuire -- after the game, Heyman told reporters that when he was down, he was kicked by a pair of alligator shoes and he was sure that was McGuire ... but the film shows McGuire taking a few steps out on the floor to try and stop the fighting, then he sees it's hopeless and he retreats to safety.

Interesting that there was a debate about whether or not Heyman was ejected. The official said he was, but Bubas insisted that he was banished merely because his bearhug of Brown was his fifth foul. Amazing that Brown was not ejected, but understandable when you realize the ref thought Heyman threw the first punch.

-- Duke -- with Heyman back in the lineup -- did lose 96-81 to Wake Forest in the ACC Tournament finals, ending their season. It was Wake, not Duke, that lost to St. Joe's in the NCAAs. At the time, only one ACC team could go to the NCAA Tournament (the tourney champs) and no ACC team could go to the NIT (that ban would be lifted in 1967). So Duke stayed home with a 22-6 record and a final No. 10 ranking in the AP poll.

-- One small correction of another story talked about in this thread: When Verga got sick in 1966, he was not replaced by Tony Barone, but by Ron Wendelin. Ron was a defensive specialist, who averaged just 2.7 points a game. Barone, who played just nine games that season, didn't play against Kentucky in the Final Four.

-- One small correction about the retired jersey debate: Duke has not published criteria for retiring numbers -- and whatever criteria are used, it does NOT include winning national player of the year. Neither Jeff Mullins, Mike Gminski nor Bobby Hurley ever won any national player of the awards (at least none that Duke claims). The only national POY award that Grant Hill or Shelden Williams won was national defensive player of the year -- but Billy King and Wojo won that and their jersies aren't hung.

I suspect that graduation is required, since every player with a retired jersey did graduate and Elton Brand, the unanimois national player of the year in 1999, would otherwise seem to qualify.

Beyond graduation, it's pretty much whoever Coach K decides.

greybeard
01-02-2008, 11:16 AM
Wasn't Frank related to Al and Dick? Al used to love to talk about fighting, boxing in particular, if I recall correctly. Portrayed himself as a no talent ball player who got where he did in the game because of his fists. Stories I heard were that he was a man's man type of coach who liked the finer things and appealed to that in his players. Just like his uncle (?) Frank?

My experience, there is a certain street tough, quick to fight, and plain talking way that Irish ballplayers from the city have that is both endearing and a bit over the top. Wouldn't be surprised if an off-hand comment about ethnicity pushed a button for Heyman's step-dad that Frank did not intend that lead to the blow up. Hard to imagine that Frank would have said something about his prize recruit's game that would have caused Heyman's step dad to insist he walk.

Devil in the Blue Dress
01-02-2008, 11:46 AM
Wasn't Frank related to Al and Dick? Al used to love to talk about fighting, boxing in particular, if I recall correctly. Portrayed himself as a no talent ball player who got where he did in the game because of his fists. Stories I heard were that he was a man's man type of coach who liked the finer things and appealed to that in his players. Just like his uncle (?) Frank?

My experience, there is a certain street tough, quick to fight, and plain talking way that Irish ballplayers from the city have that is both endearing and a bit over the top. Wouldn't be surprised if an off-hand comment about ethnicity pushed a button for Heyman's step-dad that Frank did not intend that lead to the blow up. Hard to imagine that Frank would have said something about his prize recruit's game that would have caused Heyman's step dad to insist he walk.

I always had the impression that Al McGuire and Frank McGuire were not related.... maybe someone else knows for sure.

"The talk on the street" was that Bill Heyman didn't approve of how Frank McGuire did things. He had a reputation for living extravagantly, spending big money without keeping a paper trail. Arrogant was commonly used to describe Frank. This was also the era of point shaving and game fixing .... I remember that Frank McGuire denied any involvement on his part or his players.

Wish I could have been that proverbial "fly on the wall"!

3rd Dukie
01-02-2008, 12:57 PM
Wasn't Frank related to Al and Dick? Al used to love to talk about fighting, boxing in particular, if I recall correctly. Portrayed himself as a no talent ball player who got where he did in the game because of his fists. Stories I heard were that he was a man's man type of coach who liked the finer things and appealed to that in his players. Just like his uncle (?) Frank?

My experience, there is a certain street tough, quick to fight, and plain talking way that Irish ballplayers from the city have that is both endearing and a bit over the top. Wouldn't be surprised if an off-hand comment about ethnicity pushed a button for Heyman's step-dad that Frank did not intend that lead to the blow up. Hard to imagine that Frank would have said something about his prize recruit's game that would have caused Heyman's step dad to insist he walk.

I do recall that Al used to talk about fighting, boxing and otherwise, as a broadcaster. The story was that he fought Maurice Lucas at a Marquette practice. Anyone who ever saw Al and Lucas, a powerful man about 250 lbs., 6'8" or so, would immediately realize the idiocy of that undertaking. He also used to talk about fights at or outside his uncle's or Dad's bar in one of the 5 boroughs. With regard to offhand ethnic references, I recall he was chastised for using the term "Chinese steps" in his broadcasts. I realize that this is Al I am describing, and not Frank, but they did have some of the same traits.
On the other hand, I ran into Al and Dick Enberg at a hotel bar in either St. Louis or Indianapolis during a FF, and he was absolutely the friendliest celebrity I have ever encountered. What a charming guy!

Sorry for getting off-topic too much. Just fun memories. After all, isn't Al the only coach to beat 4 consecutive teams from the state of North Carolina to win the NC? I am pretty sure he did that in '77.

jimsumner
01-02-2008, 01:43 PM
Al McGuire and 1950s NBA star Dick McGuire were brothers. No relation to Frank.

Heyman told me the fight between his step-father and McGuire was a comment by McGuire suggesting that Heyman was the latest in a line of NYC to UNC players. Heyman's step-father thought that McGuire was taking Art for granted and it went downhill from there. I don't think ethnicity had anything to do with it. Remember, Frank McGuire coached Lennie Rosenbluth and the two got along spendidly. Frank's father was a NYC cop and the guy knew his way around the city.

None of McGuire's players at either St. John's or UNC was ever found to have shaved points. Doug Moe agreed to meet with gamblers. He turned them down but did accept "expense" money for meeting with them and did not report the meeting.

Another UNC player, Lou Brown (no relation to Larry) was a go-between, putting point-shaving interests together with college players who were willing to shave points. A middle man.

McGuire loved fine suits, expensive restaurants, big cars. It eventually got him into trouble. The NCAA nailed UNC for inadequate record-keeping concerning recruiting visits, program expenses, etc. Many thought this was the tip of the iceberg but that's just conjecture.

McGuire was a fascinating man. The many people who liked him really, really liked him. The many people who didn't like him, really, really didn't like him. And there were few people in the middle. He cultivated an us-and-them-mentality that generated fierce loyalties and fierce rivalries.

jimsumner
01-02-2008, 01:45 PM
"After all, isn't Al the only coach to beat 4 consecutive teams from the state of North Carolina to win the NC? I am pretty sure he did that in '77"

Marquette beat Wake Forest, UNC-Charlotte, and UNC in its last three '77 games.

3rd Dukie
01-02-2008, 02:04 PM
"After all, isn't Al the only coach to beat 4 consecutive teams from the state of North Carolina to win the NC? I am pretty sure he did that in '77"

Marquette beat Wake Forest, UNC-Charlotte, and UNC in its last three '77 games.

Jim,

I feel that I must warn you that I seem to have a terminal case of cranial flatulence. I can only hope it is not contagious. You are, of course, correct. The scariest characteristic of the disease is that it seems to affect most severely events that I actually attended. I was at the '77 FF and knew about the 49ers and Holes, but I somehow got it into my swiss cheese brain that they had beaten 2 other state of NC teams prior to coming to the Omni. I just looked up Marquette's path through the tournament and see my mistake.

Thanks for the correction. Stay ever vigilant! I need it.

3rd Dukie
01-02-2008, 02:20 PM
"After all, isn't Al the only coach to beat 4 consecutive teams from the state of North Carolina to win the NC? I am pretty sure he did that in '77"

Marquette beat Wake Forest, UNC-Charlotte, and UNC in its last three '77 games.

Jim,

I guess this double-posting is further proof.

greybeard
01-02-2008, 02:37 PM
I thought you were appropriately counting UNC as two wins: the win against the team itself and the stunning defeat of Dean's infamous 4-corner gambit (no, it may not appropriately be called "an offense") that threatened to make a great match up into the most boring championship game of all time and would have if Al's boys weren't as tough as he was and tore Dean's strategy to bits in a matter of a few minutes. After that, it was over.

Al might not have been a great Xs and Os man, but didn't need no help in knowing what to do when somebody tried to take his ball and keep it. ;)

sagegrouse
01-02-2008, 03:53 PM
I always had the impression that Al McGuire and Frank McGuire were not related.... maybe someone else knows for sure.


Al and Dick McGuire were brothers. I have never heard that Frank McGuire was in the same family. Dick McGuire was suppoedly a wonderful talent, playing guard for the Knicks IIRC (I dimly remember him from the 1950s). Al McGuire was a scrapper, a dirty player, and a marginal presence in the league. The fact is, Al had very little talent and got by on guts.

My favorite Al McGuire story is about his funeral. He died prematurely of a blood disorder and was in failing health for quite a while. A horde of notables came to honor him -- all the usual suspects from media, basketball, and elsewhere. He arranged for a CASH BAR, so he didn't have to buy the drinks after he was gone!

sagegrouse

Devil in the Blue Dress
01-02-2008, 04:27 PM
Al and Dick McGuire were brothers. I have never heard that Frank McGuire was in the same family. Dick McGuire was suppoedly a wonderful talent, playing guard for the Knicks IIRC (I dimly remember him from the 1950s). Al McGuire was a scrapper, a dirty player, and a marginal presence in the league. The fact is, Al had very little talent and got by on guts.

My favorite Al McGuire story is about his funeral. He died prematurely of a blood disorder and was in failing health for quite a while. A horde of notables came to honor him -- all the usual suspects from media, basketball, and elsewhere. He arranged for a CASH BAR, so he didn't have to buy the drinks after he was gone!

sagegrouse

What a character Al was! He was such a great entertainer as a sports announcer. I'll never forget seeing him show up at Cameron to do the commentary for a TV game with his pith helmet, whip and chair. Was he the one who first called the Duke student section the "Cameron Crazies"?

greybeard
01-02-2008, 05:34 PM
Guy who played for St Johns in the 60s told me that, when Marquette arrived in town to play at the Garden, he'd give each of his guys a $20 the evening before and tell them not to be late for the game. Al always swore on TV that he never even spoke to his players about plays--left all that to his long-time assistant. One of the great personalities in sport, if you ask me.

3rd Dukie
01-02-2008, 07:34 PM
Guy who played for St Johns in the 60s told me that, when Marquette arrived in town to play at the Garden, he'd give each of his guys a $20 the evening before and tell them not to be late for the game. Al always swore on TV that he never even spoke to his players about plays--left all that to his long-time assistant. One of the great personalities in sport, if you ask me.

I agree completely! He was one of a kind. It was a blast when he and Packer were broadcasting together. You could almost feel the tension between them.

Johnboy
01-02-2008, 09:27 PM
What a character Al was! He was such a great entertainer as a sports announcer. I'll never forget seeing him show up at Cameron to do the commentary for a TV game with his pith helmet, whip and chair. Was he the one who first called the Duke student section the "Cameron Crazies"?


Al McGuire called us "The Zoo".

I'm not sure who coined "Cameron Crazies", but IIRC, the first "Cameron Crazies" t-shirt had a quote from Dave Kindred of the Washington Post: "Majoring in smartass." This came from an article he wrote about a Maryland game. I'm not sure whether it was reporting on the infamous Herman Veal game, but it should have been.

Devil in the Blue Dress
01-03-2008, 10:18 AM
Al McGuire called us "The Zoo".

I'm not sure who coined "Cameron Crazies", but IIRC, the first "Cameron Crazies" t-shirt had a quote from Dave Kindred of the Washington Post: "Majoring in smartass." This came from an article he wrote about a Maryland game. I'm not sure whether it was reporting on the infamous Herman Veal game, but it should have been.

My other thought about who first called the student section the "Cameron Crazies" is to think of Dick Vitale.

Johnboy
01-03-2008, 10:45 AM
My other thought about who first called the student section the "Cameron Crazies" is to think of Dick Vitale.

Either Dick Vitale, or someone in the marketing department at Duke. . .

Ooh - cool! Here's a article quoting McGuire's "Zoo" comment and showing him in pith helmet, chair and whip.
http://library.duke.edu/uarchives/images/cameron/cameron-article-1977.jpg