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Farewell, Harrell

John Harrell was buried Saturday, and while his glory at Duke was brief, he was part of two of the greatest moments in the programs history, two games that announced Duke's return to the elite of college basketball.  Many at the time simply assumed that Duke's day was over, and that they'd never return to the highest level of the game.  That notion was toppled in Greensboro, when Duke beat Wake Forest for the ACC crown, and shattered a few weeks later in St. Louis, when the young Devils took heavily favored Kentucky to the wire.

Harrell doesn't figure prominently in either of these stories, but his role in Duke's renaissance was crucial. He was supremely steady in 1978, with only 32 turnovers in 29 games before the NCAAs started.

When you read the first link, you understand where Duke was. We've never forgotten the opening lines of that article: Duke. Now there's a proud but forgotten name.  John Harrell had a lot to do with turning that around, and he's never gotten the credit he deserved.