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YouTube Gold: Duke’s 1976 Upset of Maryland

One of the great moments in the history of Cameron

Syracuse v Duke
OMAHA, NE - MARCH 23: The Duke Blue Devils mascot performs against the Syracuse Orange during the first half in the 2018 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament Midwest Regional at CenturyLink Center on March 23, 2018 in Omaha, Nebraska.
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

During the K era, people have gotten used to the idea that Duke is usually going to win but that hasn’t always been the case.

In the 1970’s, coming off of Vic Bubas’s brilliant run in the ‘60s, Duke was pretty bad. Bill Foster was hired after the 1974 season to rebuild the program but it didn’t happen immediately. In the first couple of years the struggles continued.

At that point, UNC, NC State and Maryland were the dominant programs in the ACC. NC State was at the end of the David Thompson era and Maryland still had John Lucas and Mo Howard among other stars. UNC had Phil Ford and a powerful lineup to support him and Dean Smith, near the peak of his genius.

It was a hard time for Duke fans.

So when Duke pulled off a stunning upset of Maryland in 1975, Cameron had one of the biggest celebrations it has ever seen. Crazies cut down the nets and the Blue Devil ended up in the basket, holding his pitchfork in triumph.

If you wanted to consider the biggest Cameron wins over the past 50 years, the triple overtime win over UNC would be on the list, as would the 1978 and ‘79 wins over the Tar Heels. The 1993 win over Michigan would probably go on the list as well and the 17 point comeback over UNC in Elton Brand’s freshmen year.

Maybe Maryland’s final visit, when the ball rimmed out on Maryland’s final shot attempt to preserve the win.

In terms of sheer exhilaration though, it would be really hard to top the 1975 win over the Terps because Duke was never supposed to be in that game.

So here’s the whole thing, thanks to YouTube.

Some things look and sound curious. There is no three point line for one and there are (we think) volleyball marks on the court. This was before Cameron’s big makeover and it looks a lot different in general.

And when Maryland is down three with just seconds left the announcers wonder how in the world the Terrapins could possibly score a three point shot with so little time on the clock.

Today of course you could hit a full court shot and pull that off.

Also don’t miss the bald caps. They were a regular feature of Maryland visits to Duke when Lefty Driesell was the coach.

So sit back and enjoy one of the finest moments in Duke history. This is the entire game.