One of sports greatest rivalries had one of its most dramatic endings tonight. An Austin Rivers cold blooded buzzer-beating three decided the Duke/North Carolina game at the Dean Dome as the Blue Devils won 85-84. Rivers’ three completed an improbable meltdown by UNC comeback by Duke as they finished the game on a 13-2 run. Rivers finished his fantastic night with 29 points and a shot that will go down in Blue Devil lore. The win was a crucial one as well for the ACC standings as it knotted up Duke, North Carolina and Florida State at 7-2 heading to the stretch of the season.
Frankly, I’m kind of shocked at how relatively tame Vitale’s call of the three was. Don’t get me wrong, he was excited, but I expected tables to be flipped over and even more hysteria if Duke ever defeated North Carolina in that fashion. Also, I have to give credit to Jay Bilas, a Duke alum, for being professional during the end of that game.
Duke and UNC meet again in Durham on March 3rd which is finale of both their ACC seasons. I’d think it’s a safe bet Vitale will be there as well.
UPDATE: Here are Duke and UNC’s radio calls of the buzzer-beater.