But why did the Blue Devils go down? Was it because Ryan “the White Raven” Kelly is sidelined with a foot injury? Because star Blue Devil freshman Rasheed Sulaimon hasn't been able to buy a bucket lately, and he went 0-for-10 on Saturday? Because the Wolfpack is actually a really good team that was projected to win the ACC just a few short months ago?
No. Duke lost because of these two guys.
Exhibit A: The Braveheart Guys
If you've been to a few college basketball or football games, you're probably familiar with the Loud Fan. Typically a kid who's quiet on campus and over-compensates by being a miserable human being during his school's games, this boner will start chants that go nowhere, yell during the National Anthem, and act drunk despite only having consumed two Busch Lites before lining up three hours ago. He thinks he's a good enough fan to act crazier than the norm. But really, he's the worst.
However… Sometimes you get a guy who makes an ass out of himself, and it totally works out. That's what happened before the N.C. State game on Saturday, when the unidentified hero above gave a “Braveheart”-inspired speech while atop his buddy (who admirably neighed and pranced like a horse the entire time). It's tough to make out what he's saying but here's a rough transcript:
“21 and a half years ago. I was concieved. Ever since then I have bled Wolfpack red. As brothers, as sisters, of this great university we have accepted mediocrity for 20 plus years as the red headed stepchild of Duke and Carolina. Today that ends!
/Husky guy runs up, shotguns a beer, William Wallace doesn't miss a beat
“They can come to our arena, But they will never take our STATE!”
It'll be impossible to confirm, but C.J. Leslie's 25 points were a direct result of that speech.
Exhibit B: Wheelchair Court-Storming Bro
Then, there's this guy, Will Privette, who stormed the court on Saturday. Will's in a wheelchair, but that didn't stop him from rushing the court—leading the fuckin' charge, in fact—and causing Dick Vitale to ask on-air if he was okay. Privette said later that during the scrum, his wheelchair flipped, his glasses flew off, and he had to be helped off the floor by Leslie, but even though it was the “dumbest thing he's done in college,” it was “all worth it.”
Of course it was. You've got to think that his call to line up on the baseline as the minutes wound down gave the Wolfpack the motivation it needed to close things out. Greatest wheelchair'd hero in Raleigh since FDR?