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Nell Redmond / AP Photo

The spotlight of the NCAA Tournament shifts to Zion Williamson and No. 1 overall seed Duke.

Along with the other 31 teams playing in first-round games Friday.

photos of Duke and Carolina players and coaches huddled in prayer circle
Robert Crawford

It has been more than a decade since Art Chansky released “Blue Blood: Duke-Carolina: Inside the Most Storied Rivalry in College Hoops.” In it he traces the relationship between the two schools from 1954 through 2005, analyzing everything from the contentiousness between the coaches to the role ESPN played in hyping up the storyline.

Duke University School of Medicine

Georgia Beasley was one of the most impressive athletes to come up through the Duke University women’s basketball program. When she graduated in 2001, she was part of the then-winningest senior class in its history, with 111 career victories. Beasley was named ACC Player of the Year in 2000 and 2001, and her performance led her to be drafted into the still-young WNBA. But Beasley always knew her remarkable sports career would not be a lifelong pursuit.

Duke University and freshman sensation Zion Williamson are 2019 ACC Tournament champions.
Nell Redmond / AP

The Atlantic Coast Conference comes into the NCAA Tournament with three No. 1 seeds. Putting three teams in the Final Four is a different matter.

Chuck Burton / AP Photo

Just about everything at the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament on Thursday night was about Zion Williamson.

The Duke freshman's nearly flawless performance returning from injury had the college basketball world buzzing.

This combo of images shows, from left, amateur basketball league director Merl Code, Former Adidas executive James Gatto, and business manager Christian Dawkins
Bebeto Mathews, Seth Wenig / AP

A former Adidas executive and two others who paid families to persuade top college basketball recruits to play for schools sponsored by the shoe brand were sentenced to prison Tuesday by a judge who said he wanted to send a "great big warning light to the basketball world."

In this May 9, 2018, file photo, Carolina Hurricanes owner and CEO Tom Dundon takes questions during an NHL hockey news conference in Raleigh.
Gerry Broome / AP

Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon is investing $250 million in the Alliance of American Football.

book cover Not For Long
courtesy of Oxford University Press

 This weekend football fans will watch the Los Angeles Rams take on the New England Patriots in the 2019 Super Bowl. While many are wondering when Patriots quarterback Tom Brady will retire, one thing is certain: he will have plenty of options and protection.

Photo of author Lori Leachman
Courtesy Lori Leachman

In Lori Leachman’s family, football was life. Her father Lamar Leachman was a former player for the Calgary Stampeders and later a coach with the NFL, Canadian Football League, and now-defunct World Football League. He was a defensive line coach with the New York Giants when they won Super Bowl XXI in 1987. But later in his life, his family started to notice changes in his personality, including increased anger and forgetfulness.

Carolina fans in the Dean E. Smith Center in Chapel Hill, N.C. wait to watch the North Carolina Tar Heels take on the Gonzaga Bulldogs in the NCAA Championship on April 3, 2017. North Carolina would go on to win the game 71 to 65.
Matt Couch / WUNC

The Rams Club wants to sell $98 million in new tax-free bonds, but the UNC Chapel Hill athletics booster club needs approval from the North Carolina Treasurer's office first, and that's not a slam dunk.

Arthur Ashe is known best as a tennis champion who achieved many firsts, including becoming the first and only African-American man to win a singles title at Wimbledon, the U.S. Open, and the Australian Open. But many do not know about his early years. Before he was acclaimed, Ashe was a small kid from Richmond getting soundly beat at the Algonquin Tennis Club in Durham’s Hayti District. The club sponsored annual tennis tournaments in the 1920s that would see the likes of Arthur Ashe and Althea Gibson. 

Coach Morgan Wootten, with the highest winning percentage of any coach in the history of the sport, doing what he does best.
Courtesy of Bill Hayes

Morgan Wootten is one of the most successful coaches in high school basketball history. Those from the Washington metro area may remember him for the legendary success of his DeMatha Catholic High School basketball team. During his close to 50 year tenure, DeMatha won more than 1,200 games and never lost more than two in a row. One of the most historic moments of his career was the team’s unexpected win up against a powerhouse team led by a player we now know as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. 

In this Dec. 30, 2013 file photo, Texas coach Mack Brown walks onto the field following the Valero Alamo Bowl NCAA college football game against Oregon in San Antonio.
Eric Gay / AP

Updated 8:55 a.m. Nov. 27, 2018

North Carolina has officially hired Mack Brown as the Tar Heels next football coach.  

Buried beneath the hype: The Blue Devils, Tar Heels and entire ACC is currently chasing UVA in the standings.
Jeff Tiberii

Duke has supplanted Kansas atop the new AP Top 25 poll after its dominating win against Kentucky, giving the Blue Devils a record number of appearances at No. 1.

N.C. A&T football player Dontae Keys
Lynn Hey / For WUNC

After a temporary hiatus due to Hurricane Florence, a number of college sports teams across the state are back in action.

While some North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University student athletes had to stay in Greensboro during the storm and the immediate recovery, their minds were elsewhere.

youth football players
Stuart Seeger / Flickr, Creative Commons, https://flic.kr/p/pPWtH

Chapel Hill High School announced Monday it would not play varsity football this year. Earlier this summer, Ceder Ridge – also in Orange County – announced it would scrap this year's varsity football season as well.

North Carolina coach Larry Fedora, left, listens as athletic director Bubba Cunningham makes comments during the NCAA college football team's media day in Chapel Hill, N.C., Monday, Aug. 6, 2018.
Gerry Broome / AP

Updated 8:25 a.m. | August 7, 2018

Less than a year after emerging from a long run of NCAA issues, North Carolina is dealing with rule violations again — this time for football players selling team-issued shoes.

Nikola Solic / AP Photo

The 21st FIFA World Cup hosted by Russia heads toward the final game on Sunday when France and Croatia will battle for the top spot. The tournament attracts millions of viewers from around the globe, with the last World Cup final between Germany and Argentina in 2014 drawing a record 1.01 billion viewers worldwide, according to FIFA.

New Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper answers a question during a news conference at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C., Tuesday, July 10, 2018. Tepper finalized his purchase of the team on Monday.
Chuck Burton / AP

The new owner of the Carolina Panthers said a culture change is coming to the organization, following years of sexual harassment by the team’s former owner.

photo of a scarred football helmet
HOUSE COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION AND THE WORKFORCE DEMOCRATS / FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS

Football has remained one of America’s favorite forms of entertainment for years. Even as its ratings fall, the National Football League is estimated to have made $14 billion in 2017 alone. But science is finally catching up to the sport, and it suggests the big hits that delight fans do not come without a price. 

Courtesy of Jason Brown

When he first started playing football, Jason Brown saw it as a business decision. He wanted to get a scholarship to college so that he would not be a financial burden for his parents.

The new owner of the Carolina Panthers is committed to keeping the team in the Carolinas.

And Charlotte is his clearly his first choice. But David Tepper left a bit of wiggle room on his first day as owner of the team.

Ashley Thomas posing with athletes from the Valor Games
Bridge2Sports

Each year the Valor Games come to the Triangle and give disabled veterans and those in the armed services the opportunity to compete in sports that help them build strength, confidence and tenacity.

Photos from the #Panthers tie vs. Cincinnati:
Carolina Panthers via Twitter

People familiar with the situation say hedge fund manager David Tepper has agreed to buy the Carolina Panthers from team founder Jerry Richardson for a record $2.2 billion.

UNC-Chapel Hill Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham.
Chuck Burton / AP

College athletics is notoriously big business.

photo of Levelle Moton and a referee in action
Courtesy of LeVelle Moton

College basketball is part of North Carolina’s lifeblood, and team allegiances are not taken lightly. Yet the head coach of North Carolina Central University’s men’s basketball team is deeply respected by both those who wear the Eagles jersey and those who compete against it.

photo of the 1963 loyola basketball team with coaches. some of the team are white and some are african american.
Loyola University Archives / http://www.lib.luc.edu/specialcollections/items/show/225

When Mark Mehler and Charles Paikert first met to watch their favorite college basketball teams duke it out, they had no idea it would become a tradition. But year after year the two continued to meet at the same local bar, often times cheering for opposing teams. Journalism was their trade, but college hoops was their passion.

Photo of the 2018 Winter Olympics logo
Wikimedia Commons

The Winter Olympics kick off this week in Pyeongchang, South Korea, but the headlines leading up to the international games are dominated by a doping scandal. The International Olympic Committee banned Russia’s team as punishment for systematic state-sponsored doping.

Steve Malik talks with reporters
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

Triangle soccer enthusiasts learned Wednesday that Raleigh is not on the short list to become the next home of a Major League Soccer franchise.

In a silver lining, however, Raleigh could still win a bid in a future expansion round.

Kenneth Wainstein, lead investigator into academic irregularities at UNC Chapel Hill, holds a copy of his findings following a special joint meeting of the UNC Board of Governors.
Gerry Broome / AP Photo

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s accreditor is looking into recently disclosed statements made by the university to the NCAA. 

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