Duke is undefeated, which typically means that basketball season is well underway. But, alas, the football Blue Devils have experienced a tremendous September and enter their Friday night prime time game undefeated as they set to face ranked Miami. The Hurricanes have undergone a turbulent road to their undefeated status. Hurricane Irma had postponed games and disrupted everyday life causing much distraction among the team.
A typical school day on campus grew increasingly congested in the early evening as fans crowded the pathways through buildings toward Wallace Wade Stadium. Coach Cutcliffe and the Duke players arrived in suits and ties as the band, fans, cheerleaders, and mascot welcomed them on their walk into the stadium. Tailgating popped up in and around Krzyzewskiville as fans self-toured the stone built campus. Many snuck into the lobby of Cameron Indoor Stadium to soak in a sense of this championship laden basketball arena.
The stadium filled quite impressively for this anticipated matchup of undefeated squads. Upon entry, the students received devil horns that lit up royal blue. The glow coming from the south end of the stadium provided a unique visual effect as the sun set behind the press box.
The air was saturated with motivation as Duke emerged from the tunnel to a host of pyrotechnics and the ringing of the Victory Bell, which the Blue Devils had just secured with a win over rival North Carolina the week prior. However, Miami fans arrived in significant numbers giving one corner an orange hue.
During the game, the Blue Devils had moments of offensive brilliance that just continued to stall for one reason or another. Miami took advantage more often than not and pulled away to a 31-6 victory sending Duke fans to the exits early in the fourth quarter.
Blue Devil fans were disappointed, but not dejected – they have seen this story before. The hardwood is their home. But, seeing a packed Wallace Wade proved that Duke fans are always ready and willing to support beyond the walls of Cameron Indoor Stadium.