Anti-Duke Manifesto-The Complete Hate

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The consistency with which Duke players ripen into professional failures is staggering. Even the ’sure thing’ future NBA stars promptly stink it up as pros. Remember two-time player of the year, Mr. Everything, Jason Williams? The guy picked second overall in the 2002 NBA draft? In the single season NBA career that followed before breaking his leg in a motorcycle accident, he averaged less than 10 points a game and shot under forty percent. How about William Avery, that other Duke great whom commentators saw as a can’t miss NBA star? You remember, the 14th overall pick in the ‘99 draft? His three year career ended with a scoring average of 2.7 ppg on a hideous 33% shooting percentage. Trajan Langdon (a/k/a ‘the Alaskan Assassin’) went 11th overall in the ‘99 NBA draft. Three years later, he found his niche in Italy.

Even all-time media darling Christian Laettner (#3 overall in ‘92 draft) has unwittingly exposed the extent to which his collegiate success depended upon Coach K’s striped worshipers. Laettner’s career NBA numbers (12.7 points, 6.7 rebounds per game) are reasonably respectable, even if accumulated while being traded more frequently than Krzyzewski’s hair dye schedule.

However, his career, which includes but a single All-Star game, falls far short of the greatness that hoops analysts projected on the basis of his golden boy college years. And does anyone seriously believe that the trend of pro duds will end with JJ Redick and Shavlick Randolph?

Compare the post-collegiate accomplishments of the following UNC grads from the same time period: Michael Jordan, James Worthy, Sam Perkins, Brad Daugherty, Kenny Smith, Jerry Stackhouse, Rasheed Wallace, Antawn Jameson, Vince Carter. The group has collected enough NBA rings, All-Star appearances, and MVP awards to fill the Dean Dome. Nevertheless, each of these players, with the possible exception of Worthy, who went pro before Krzyzewski was given his sainthood status, struggled against the one-sided neutralizing effect of the collegiate officials.

Even schools traditionally considered a tier below Duke have accomplished far greater NBA success than Duke. Consider Georgia Tech’s contributions during Coach K’s career: Mark Price, John Salley, Tom Hammonds, Dennis Scott, Kenny Anderson, Matt Geiger, Stephon Marbury, Matt Harpring, and Chris Bosh. Maryland has added Albert King, Buck Williams, Tony Massenburg, Walt Williams, Joe Smith, Steve Francis, and Juan Dixon, all from the Krzyzewski era and all of whom have enjoyed solid NBA careers. And even Steve Blake, by the way, is doing just fine in the NBA, averaging 8 points and 4 assists a game. Georgetown placed Ewing, Motumbo, Mourning, Iverson, Sleepy Floyd, Reggie Williams, David Wingate. Most of these successful pros were also considered inferior to their various Duke counterparts who are now heckled by foreign tongues.