Why I (don't) Hate Duke

I went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. And if you know one thing about that school, you know that our biggest rival, Duke University, is only eight miles down the road. And if you know two things about Carolina, its that we hate Duke with the same kind of irrational fervor that Kim Jong-un hates, well, everyone.

Now, I'm sure you think the title of this post is the most blasphemous thing you've ever heard coming from a Tar Heel. Like run-and-take-cover-because-the-lightning-bolts-are-coming type sacrilege. Especially after that soul-crushing loss yesterday. Why, Roy? Why didn't you call a time out? 

But I digress; I don't care that Coach K probably a nice guy and his Sports Center commercials are kind of funny. I still want to punch him in his smarmy rat face every time he's on my television screen.   The sight of Cameron Crazies invariably makes me want to spew Carolina blue puke all over their stupid painted faces. If I could, I'd have that infamous line from Ian Williams' 1990 Editorial printed on our Christmas cards. 

And yet.

I just can't give a hundred and ten percent to hating Duke. 

You see, my grandfather was a Duke fan. Like, the biggest. When he was sick and unable to really get out much, college basketball became his passion; he collected news clippings and stats reports and pasted them in notebooks that he stashed in the living room desk.

Now, I don't know if it was teenage rebellion or what, but my dad was always a Carolina guy. When I was born, my first article of clothing were little sky blue booties. But my grandfather, my pappaw, the first man who ever broke my heart because he died before I ever really got to know him, was a Duke fan. I don't know why he loved that darker shade of blue so much; I never asked.  What I do know is that I can't ever truly hate something that he loved so much.

Not even Duke. 

And so, as Carolina played and lost to their biggest rival last night, of course I cheered my Heels on and launched some very unladylike language at my television screen.  I still think Grayson Allen is a big turd, just like Laettner, Wojciechowski, and Reddick before him. I still think Coach K looks like Master Splinter. I still really, really, really, really, REALLY dislike Duke. In fact, I just about hate them. 

But not quite.