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  1. #1

    Players You Couldn't Help But Like

    In light of all the discussion of hated players, I decided to start a thread on players from other ACC teams you couldn't help but like. I will start with two players from teams that I usually despise, but definitely rooted for when they weren't playing Duke.

    Juan Dixon - Maryland. Tough kid, extremely intense competitor. Couldn't stand Maryland teams of that era or Gary Williams, but Dixon was hard to not respect if not enjoy watching.

    Marcus Paige. I might get throttled for this one, but his grit and determination has willed the Evil Empire to what seems like dozens of victories in the last few years that they wouldn't have without him on the floor. He fights through injuries and adversity, frequently seems like the only player on UNC that can hit from outside, and loves having the ball in his hands in big game situations. Seems to be a good kid by all accounts.

    Please, let's keep this positive, and share the players from other schools that you couldn't help but enjoy watching play.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn.Devil.91.92.01.10.15 View Post
    In light of all the discussion of hated players, I decided to start a thread on players from other ACC teams you couldn't help but like. I will start with two players from teams that I usually despise, but definitely rooted for when they weren't playing Duke.

    Juan Dixon - Maryland. Tough kid, extremely intense competitor. Couldn't stand Maryland teams of that era or Gary Williams, but Dixon was hard to not respect if not enjoy watching.

    Marcus Paige. I might get throttled for this one, but his grit and determination has willed the Evil Empire to what seems like dozens of victories in the last few years that they wouldn't have without him on the floor. He fights through injuries and adversity, frequently seems like the only player on UNC that can hit from outside, and loves having the ball in his hands in big game situations. Seems to be a good kid by all accounts.

    Please, let's keep this positive, and share the players from other schools that you couldn't help but enjoy watching play.
    I'll join in, and share your risk of getting throttled. I enjoyed watching James Worthy when I was a kid, especially his creativity with his dunks. Len Bias - do I need to explain this one? It's a shame he tragically left this earth far too soon, but he was amazing in college and during an era when the Twerps were tolerable, IMO.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Winston’Salem
    Julius Hodge. A lot like Chris Carawell, in my view, only in red-and-white. And Tim Duncan + Randolph Childress. They were the BMOC's when I moved to town, and I have nothing but praise for them (especially what Childress did to Jeff McInnis).
    "Amazing what a minute can do."

  4. #4
    OK, Childress. But this is an icky topic...
    Hhhmmm, Cat Barber?
    I quit.
    Nothing incites bodily violence quicker than a Duke fan turning in your direction and saying 'scoreboard.'

  5. #5
    Definitely Juan Dixon. Rodney Monroe from N.C. St. Bryant Stith from U.Va. Dennis Scott and Kenny Anderson from Tech. Rodney Rogers, Tim Duncan and Randolph Childress from Wake.

  6. #6
    David Thompson

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Randolph Childress is #1 for me. His 1995 ACC Tournament was just silly, and I was able to enjoy it basically with no stakes due to the state of Duke's season at that point.
    Also Georgia Tech's Lethal Weapon 3 (Kenny Anderson, Dennis Scott, and Brian Oliver)...having grown up in Atlanta, I fondly remember when the Jackets were near-elite and made ACC basketball actually matter around here. Not for nothing did they call Tech's old arena "The Thriller Dome."
    I also jealously watched some really fun ACC football players during our lean years...Calvin Johnson, Matt Ryan, and Philip Rivers come to mind.

  8. #8
    In addition to most of those named above, Bobby Jones, Spud Webb, Jeff Lamp, Tim Mullen (he's from my HS), Craig Neal.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Undisclosed
    Since I started seeing games (original and "plus one" teams ACC only)

    Wake -- Randolph Childress, Mugsy Bogues, Rodney Rodgers (shout out to Rusty LaRue, too, although I loved to give him grief)
    Maryland -- Len Bias, Juan Dixon, Adrian Branch
    Heels -- Antawn Jamison, Marcus Paige
    Tech -- about anyone from the '85-'89 classes except Mark Price or Noodles Neal
    Virginia -- Malcolm Brogdon, Bryant Stith, Cory Alexander, Junior Burrough
    State -- Rodney Monroe, Chris Cochiani, Sidney Lowe, Cat Barber
    Clemson -- Horace and Harvey Grant

    FSU -- Charlie Ward

    Hard to really pick one from the expansion schools.
    “Fútbol is life!” — Dani Rojas, Richmond Greyhounds

  10. #10
    Didn't like him at first, but he grew on me -- Greivis Vasquez.

    Same with Julius Hodge.

    Definitely Juan Dixon. And Bias, of course. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KdFhvX8Xaw

    Mark Price and John Salley. And Dennis Scott.

    Childress. I hated the way he repeatedly gutted us, but I'll always love him for this:







    And this (nice defense, Dante): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgsVItGvRQo


    Bryant Stith, definitely. Remember when he broke UVa's career scoring record in Cameron, and Coach K grabbed the PA mike after the game and gave Stith the game ball? (Duke had won the game -- it was the game in which Hurley returned from his foot injury in 1992 -- but I thought it was an incredibly nice gesture by K.)

    Greg Buckner. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SmGyTDfNks
    "I swear Roy must redeem extra timeouts at McDonald's the day after the game for free hamburgers." --Posted on InsideCarolina, 2/18/2015

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    San Diego, California
    Terry Chili...oh, wait, he played for us.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn.Devil.91.92.01.10.15 View Post
    In light of all the discussion of hated players, I decided to start a thread on players from other ACC teams you couldn't help but like.
    Buck Williams. John Lucas. Tom McMillen. Tim Duncan. Rodney Rogers. Randolph Childress. Frank Johnson. David Thompson. T.J. Warren. Rodney Monroe. Larry Nance. Horace Grant. Mark Price. Dennis Scott. Tom Hammonds. Jeff Lamp. Ralph Sampson. Bryant Stith. Wally Walker. Brad Daugherty (had to have one from Carolina).

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Washington DC

  13. #13
    Someone mentioned Childress' performance in the1995 ACC Tournament. Let's not forget Billy Langloh, who pretty much won the 1976 ACC Tournament for UVa all by himself. And did nothing else before or after.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    San Francisco
    Billy Cunningham.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom B. View Post
    And this (nice defense, Dante): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgsVItGvRQo
    That was worse than Roger Dorn playing third base for the Cleveland Indians... (special thanks to RPS for helping me get the reference correct)
    Last edited by duke blue brewcrew; 02-09-2016 at 06:11 PM.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    San Diego, California
    Quote Originally Posted by duke blue brewcrew View Post
    That was worse than Roger Dorn playing shortstop for the Cleveland Indians...
    Third base. https://youtu.be/1X8552DxqOk

  17. #17
    Greivis Vasquez - because he seemed to enjoy the harassment in Cameron - unfortunately, often too much

    Tim Duncan - because he stayed in school like he promised his mother

    Muggsy Bogues/Spud Webb - you have to enjoy short guys playing a tall guy game and doing it well. Plus, Muggsy's wife told the story about the kids in the neighborhood ringing the bell to see if Muggsy could come out to play.

    For a coach - Lefty Driesell - he was a Duke guy and he enjoyed the Cameron atmosphere.

  18. #18
    A lot have been already mentioned but I'll add Matt Harpering. One of my favorite monuments from the ACC tournament was his final game in 1998. GTech was going to lose so Cremins pulled him before the buzzer. The entire Greensboro Coliseums gave him a standing ovulation. The conference was a closer knit community back before expansion started.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Nashville
    This is a cool idea for a thread.

    Greivis Vasquez definitely ranks up there for me. I didn't like him at first because, well, Maryland, but his unorthodox game and playful, competitive fire grew on me. I wasn't even upset about our loss to a Vasquez-led Maryland team in 2010 in the second to last game of the regular season. Vasquez made some really nice plays down the stretch while Jon had his worst game of what was a sensational season. I would even venture to say this particular loss to Maryland is the lease upset I've been about ANY Duke loss since I became a big time fan. I had faith in those guys and knew we'd make a run in the tourney. It wasn't so bad letting Vasquez and Maryland share the regular season crown with us . . . especially since we went on to get the far more valuable ACCT and NCAAT crowns. I figure that any player who actually made me not cringe at the sight of Maryland fans celebrating a victory over Duke must be pretty dang likable.

    Maybe it's from growing up in the ATL area, but I also really liked the 2004 GaTech team with Jarret Jack and BJ Elder. Even though it was futile, I was pulling hard for them to beat UCONN in the title game in '04. It wasn't a particularly memorable game, but I doubt I've ever been as upset when a non-Duke college basketball team lost save for Illinois in 2005 and Michigan State in 2009 (I was too young to be upset in '93).

    The obvious choice for me would be Duncan, except that I appreciate him more for his NBA career. When the Spurs drafted him, I began following them as my second favorite team behind the Hawks. I still root for Duke guys to do well in the league, obviously, but Duncan is just a really incredible talent, from college all the way 'til now (he's still 2nd in the league in defensive win shares despite being ancient by NBA standards!).

    If I had to pick an absolute favorite, though, it would be Julius Hodge. Maybe it's that Duke and State fans can unite in their hatred for UNC (even if it's an uneasy alliance at times), but Hodge was fun to watch on the court and pretty funny off the court, too. He played on some good State teams and as long as they weren't playing Duke, I always wanted State to win games when he was playing.

    Wish I had a better memory of some of the legends others are mentioning. It's harder to develop such strong feelings in the current ACC setup, though. 15 teams is a lot. Between the increased rate of early entry and the fact that we only play a lot of teams once per season, I feel like I don't get to know opposing teams' players in quite the same way. I agree with the poster who mentioned Cat Barber, though. He is fun to watch. And I'm glad we got State home and away, just as it should be every season. I know the conference needed to evolve or die, but the round-robins of old were certainly fun. It also made me care more about the games of other ACC teams because with everyone playing each other twice, conference record meant more and you could draw better comparisons between players and teams.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    Quote Originally Posted by Kdogg View Post
    A lot have been already mentioned but I'll add Matt Harpering. One of my favorite monuments from the ACC tournament was his final game in 1998. GTech was going to lose so Cremins pulled him before the buzzer. The entire Greensboro Coliseums gave him a standing ovulation. The conference was a closer knit community back before expansion started.
    Very close, apparently.

    Sports medicine is not my area of expertise. How does this work?

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