Category Archives: Chronicle Coverage


I’m proud to announce that The Chronicle’s Sports Blog has undergone its first facelift. We think the new blog is slicker, sleeker and, more than anything, allows us to continue to bring you the best coverage of Duke Football, Duke Basketball and Duke Athletics in a variety of different media—that means more videos, more photos and more audio.

Given the change, please change your RSS feeds to: Bookmarks can be redirected to The Sports Blog can still be found at

Sorry for any inconvenience and, as always, thanks for reading. Consider this a small nuisance and, in return, you’ll get even better coverage of the teams you love. If you have any concerns or comments about the new site, please feel free to e-mail Ben Cohen at Criticism is welcome.

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Twitter Reminder

Just another reminder that The Sports Blog is on Twitter, and we’d love for you to join us—or, as people on Twitter say, follow us at Don’t know what Twitter is? It’s a microblogging service (whatever that means!) in which users can post updates of 140 characters. Something like:

“Follow The Sports Blog on Twitter. We promise you won’t regret it. Go to to sign up, then to follow.”

That’s 140 characters, and hopefully, you got through it. So, now, follow the instructions! Our Twitter feed is automatically updated with blog updates and Chronicle stories when they’re posted, and starting now, we’ll start posting directly, and more frequently. Something like:

Just recorded predictions for this weekend. Iles: 28-17 GT. Cohen: 31-21 GT. Video soon on the blog, but what do you think?”

See? You would have gotten that information hours later if you weren’t on Twitter. So what are you waiting for? Sign up, and become a part of the journalism of the future—whatever that means.

—by Ben Cohen

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ANNOUNCEMENT: Chronicle Sports Blog Q&A Session, Sept. 24

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Monday’s SportsWrap Cover

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Filed under Chronicle Coverage, Football

On Coach K, Relief and Chronicle Columns

Mike Krzyzewski has never been afraid to challenge local media, which very much includes The Chronicle, especially when he reads criticism of his team–and, of course, he has every right to defend himself, just as every journalist has every right to write freely. In years past, however, The Chronicle has been one of the most analytic and vocal of newspapers, which was never more evident on three days last March.

When Duke lost in the second round of the NCAA Tournament to West Virginia last year, now-graduated sports columnist Andrew Yaffe wrote an opinion piece contradicting Krzyzewski’s press conference claim that the Blue Devils had enjoyed a “great” season. The tenet of the column was that great teams don’t lose five of their last 11 games or fail to make it past the first weekend of the Tournament, and that saying last season was “great” does a “disservice” to the truly sublime Duke teams of the past.

The column was a fair, honest assessment of the year that was, even though Yaffe, a member of one of two Duke classes to graduate without a Final Four since the Class of 1986, caught flak from the sense of entitlement that ran through the piece. “I certainly appreciate the effort the team put forth Saturday and don’t doubt DeMarcus Nelson was trying his damndest,” he wrote. “But Duke students don’t sleep in the cold for two months just to see players give it their all. Expectations can and should be high, and they were not fulfilled this year or last.”

The column’s sentiments were amplified the next day by editorial (read: non-sports) columnist Dan Belzer, who wrote on the back pages: “I don’t know about y’all, but I was under the impression that part of my birthright as a privileged Duke student was a men’s basketball national championship-or at least a Final Four. You really think I came here for the academics?” It had none of the accuracy or validity of Yaffe’s piece, and, of course, was a lesser derivative of the previous piece. Those two pieces, especially combined with editorial (read: non-sports) columnist Tom Segal’s further cretinous rant the very next day, did not sit well with the Duke Basketball office, which may have accepted Yaffe’s column as critical but somewhat indisputable and honest but could not find the same merit in the last two offerings.

Which brings us to Wednesday, when Krzyzewski showed, yet again, that he doesn’t forget anything and, at least occasionally, reads The Chronicle for non-Sudoku purposes:

What do you think? Were Krzyzewski’s points valid?

–by Ben Cohen


Filed under Chronicle Coverage, Men's Basketball

The Ol’ Ball Coach Leaves a Message

In Tuesday’s Chronicle, former sports editor and current columnist Meredith Shiner writes about a message left on her cell phone by one of the nation’s top college football coaches. She defends Spurrier’s annual top-25 vote for Duke and laments the decision rendered by the American Football Coaches Association to prevent him from casting one this year.

The following is the audio of the message, in its entirety. Enjoy:

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The Chronicle Joins Twitter

Good news for those of you who are avid Twitter users. We’ve officially created a Twitter feed (, so now you can keep abreast of Duke athletics and, more importantly, The Chronicle’s coverage of sports through newspaper stories and blog posts while you Tweet away (is that the correct verb?).

Again, that’s

And for those who don’t know what Twitter is (or if you’re morally opposed to it), we’ll return to regularly scheduled programming soon.

–by Ben Cohen

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