Anti-Duke Manifesto-The Complete Hate

7 of 30

The biggest irony of this Duke tradition of insulting opposing players’ appearances is presented year after year by the student body itself. As each panning of the crowd consistently shows, the student body does not exactly comprise Britney Spears and Brad Pitt look-a-likes. There clearly is a compelling reason why so many of the students cover their faces with paint, masks, basketball nets, etc. Nevertheless, their personal taunts and jeers continue in a way that would make Joan Rivers proud.

Beyond the hypocrisy, it is difficult to select the word that best describes the Duke students who attend the school’s home games. Haughty, impudent, smug, egg-headed nerds – all capture elements, but none come close to painting the full descriptive picture. The Washington Post, roughly twenty years ago, coined a useful but dated phrase in labeling the students, ‘Yuppie Brats.’ Another article credited the students with ‘majoring in smart ass.’ Still, a full understanding of their detestable nature can be gathered only through experience, not description.

And yet the sports media, for reasons that baffle, glorify this same group. Led by Dick Vitale, who affectionately refers to the student section of Cameron Indoor Stadium as the ‘Cameron Crazies,’ sports telecasters and analysts regularly state that the Duke student body is what’s ‘great’ about college basketball. These same commentators credit the students for their creative and clever game rituals, and they seemingly cannot say enough times what a ‘classy’ program Duke is. It’s an insane commentary on students who, as opposing players are introduced, chant such creative phrases as, ‘Antawn sucks.’ Another Duke trademark is the united chant of ‘bullshit’ in response to any unfavorable official’s call. Before losing to UNC in 1989, the student body, referring to Carolina’s star center J.R. Reid, raised a sign that read, ‘J.R. Can’t Reid This.’ The same statement was chanted, even though Reid was actually a quite intelligent and scholastically accomplished student athlete.

This is the stuff of class?