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Duke and UNC struggle for dominance but neither side is in control for long.

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NCAA Basketball: Duke at North Carolina
Mar 7, 2015; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels head coach Roy Williams with Duke Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski before the game at Dean E. Smith Center. 
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Since Roy Williams returned to North Carolina, his alma mater, in 2003-04, the Tar Heels and Blue Devils have met on each other’s home courts on 26 occasions and once in the ACC Tournament.

For much of Williams’ tenure, Duke and North Carolina followed a surprisingly distinctive pattern in their annual series. Less significant than the location of the games was the order in which they were played. On their home courts UNC and Duke are essentially even, with the Devils enjoying a slight advantage. Since ’04 Duke is 8-5 at Durham and 7-6 at Chapel Hill.

More tellingly, the first time around, regardless of where the teams played, the advantage was apt to go to Mike Krzyzewski’s clubs, to the tune of 10 times in 13 meetings. Come the return engagement, it was wise to bet on the Tar Heels, who won eight of 13 to end the regular season.

But the tit-for-tat balance has shifted a bit recently. Duke holds a commanding 11-4 edge in the series since 2010, a period in which it won a pair of NCAA titles. From 2004 through 2009 the Tar Heels held a 7-5 edge; they similarly won two NCAA championships during that span.

The Blue Devils opened the series with a win last season, their fourth straight victory over UNC and longest run during Williams’ tenure. Before that Duke won five in a row from 1999 through 2000 with Bill Guthridge at the Heels’ helm.

The only longer string of Duke victories against Carolina came from 1962 through 1964, when Vic Bubas and Co. won seven consecutive times against teams coached by newcomer Dean Smith.

UNC won its most recent visit to Cameron, ending Duke’s series streak, and didn’t lose again until the 2016 NCAA title game against Villanova.

UNC’s longest winning streak against the Devils was eight, first from 1972 through 1974 and repeated from 1975 through 1977. In fact, between ‘72 and ’77 the Heels won 16 of 17 against teams coached by Bucky Waters, Neil McGeachy and Bill Foster.

Williams’ longest triumphant run against Duke was three in 2008 and 2009.

Record Between Duke and North Carolina
Since Roy Williams’ Arrival For 2004 Season
Year Site Winner
2004 @NC Duke
@D Duke
2005 @D Duke
2006 @NC Duke
2007 @D NC
2008 @NC Duke
2009 @D NC
2010 @NC Duke
@D Duke
2011 @D Duke
2012 @NC Duke
2013 @D Duke
@NC Duke
2014 @NC NC
@D Duke
2015 @D Duke
@NC Duke
2016 @NC Duke
2017 @D Feb. 9
@NC March 4

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