Duke and the University of North Carolina (UNC) are set to face off one of the two Final Four games this weekend, marking the first time the two teams have ever met in the March Madness tournament.
The two blue-blooded North Carolina schools have had a rivalry dating back for several decades and the matchup this weekend comes during the final season and potentially the final game for Duke head coach, Mike Krzyzewski. The winner of the game will go on to face either Villanova or Kansas in the NCAA National Championship game.
Newsweek has put together a primer ahead of the game to compile everything you need to know before watching the Final Four game between Duke and UNC.
Time and Date of Game:
The No. 2 ranked Duke Blue Devils and the No. 8 ranked UNC Tar Heels are set to face off on Saturday, April 2 at the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans. Tip-off for the game is scheduled for 8:49 p.m. EDT.
The game will be televised on TBS and is able to be streamed on several services including Sling TV and Hulu + Live TV.
Rosters and Coaches:
The Duke Blue Devils are coached by Krzyzewski and will be featuring a starting five that will likely be: Jeremy Roach (guard), Wendell Moore Jr. (forward), AJ Griffin (forward), Paolo Banchero (forward) and Mark Williams (center).
On the other side of the court, the UNC Tar Heels are coached by Hubert Davis. The Tar Heels starting five for Saturday is likely to be Caleb Love (guard), R.J. Davis (guard), Leaky Black (forward), Brady Manek (forward) and Armando Bacot (forward/center).
In the past season, Duke and UNC played twice, with the two teams splitting the games. Their first matchup occurred on February 5, with Duke defeating UNC 87 to 67.
The teams’ second matchup occurred just before the start of the ACC conference tournament on March 5, with UNC defeating Duke 94 to 81. The game on March 5 was Krzyzewski’s final game at Duke’s Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Overall Rivalry Record:
Despite the two teams never meeting in the March Madness tournament, Duke and UNC have faced off 257 times since their first game in 1920. UNC currently leads the rivalry 142 to 115.
Over the course of his storied coaching career, Krzyzewski has garnered over 1,000 wins in 41 seasons with the Blue Devils. On the other side of the court, Davis is in his first year as UNC’s head coach. Davis has led the team to a 28–9 record this season.
According to the NCAA, from 1921 to 1928, UNC won 16 straight games against Duke, which is the longest win streak in the rivalry.
Final Four Appearances:
In addition to leading Duke in the matchup between the two teams, UNC also has more Final Four appearances than the Blue Devils. The Tar Heels have appeared in 21 Final Fours while Duke has appeared in 17.
Following Duke’s recent victory over Arkansas, Krzyzewski garnered his 13th Final Four appearance, which is the most in NCAA tournament history, surpassing the legendary John Wooden’s record of 12.
Prior to Davis taking over as the Tar Heels’ head coach, former head coach Roy Williams led UNC to nine Final Four appearances, which is the fourth most in NCAA tournament history.
NCAA National Championships:
The Tar Heels lead the Blue Devils in the number of March Madness championship victories six to five. UNC won its most recent NCAA National Championship in 2017, defeating Gonzaga 71 to 65.
The Blue Devils won their most recent National Championship in 2015 defeating Wisconsin 68 to 63. All five of Duke’s National Championships have come under Krzyzewski.
Throughout Krzyzewski’s 46-year coaching career, he was set the record for the most wins in men’s college basketball history with 1,170. Krzyzewski also holds the record for the most NCAA tournament wins, with 97, as well as a number of other records and accolades.
In addition to his storied career in college basketball, Krzyzewski has also served as the coach for the U.S. men’s national basketball team in the Olympics, where he has won six gold medals.