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Just when you thought you had 90 days, 11 hours, 22 minutes and 32…31…30 seconds to avoid the Duke/Carolina hype

November 13, 2008
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The fine folks at Awful Announcing noticed this while perusing the CBS Sportsline college basketball page: A counter ticking off the seconds until UNC faces Duke in Cameron:

And you thought only ESPN did this kind of stuff?

Welcome to the world of college basketball coverage in the 21st century: where only two teams matter. All the other games in the conference and the country are merely a backdrop for the two, three or possibly even four times these two teams face each other.

Memo to the execs at CBS…don’t follow suit with how ESPN approaches things. There are tons of other great teams out there deserving of attention and you would be better served focusing on those stories instead of subtly hyping ONE game THREE MONTHS AWAY.

Is it any wonder that Carolina just signed five players, regarded as the best recruiting class in college basketball? Or that Duke is right there with them in inking talent? When the media marginalizes every team not named “Duke” or “Carolina” in this fashion, it sends a message to recruits across the country that these are the only two programs worth a damn. And the nature of college sports being what they are, relying so heavily on recruiting, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy that Duke and Carolina are always raking in talent. More talent, more wins, more exposure, more talent…rinse and repeat.

Sour grapes, blah blah blah…perhaps it’s some of that. But the underlying message is still the same no matter whom you root for: If it’s not Duke or Carolina, it doesn’t matter.

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