Cameron Indoor Stadium was full of its requisite Crazies for Tuesday's men's basketball game against the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The marching band blared; the cheerleaders danced; and hoards of rowdy students chanted "go to hell Carolina, go to hell!"
The only catch was that the game was being played several miles away at the Dean Smith Center in Chapel Hill.
Thanks to a collaboration between Campus Council, the Inferno and the Duke Alumni Association, more than 500 students were able to watch the game on two projection screens while sitting in the stands of the Duke's fabled basketball arena.
The event, called "Hoop Rush," marked the first time all three groups came together to make the event a success, said Jay Ganatra, Campus Council president.
"The idea was brought to us by the Alumni Association," Ganatra explained, adding that the association picked up the tab for all the expenses. "They wanted to use our programming expertise."
Although the game dominated the fans' attention on the 147-square-foot screens, it was not the only attraction in Cameron.
At almost every commercial break during the first half, Ganatra raffled an eclectic mix of prizes, ranging from autographed Duke memorabilia to 10 Domino's pizzas.
One crowd favorite-basketball aside-was the halftime chicken nugget eating contest.
Contestants had five minutes to eat a bucket of 35 McDonald's Chicken McNuggets. Dipping sauce and water were available.
Judges gathered around the front runner for most of the race, waiting for him to finish his meal-until he suddenly, but not altogether unexpectedly, ran for the garbage can and threw up his previous accomplishments.
The crowd groaned, but freshman contestant Greg Tipton took advantage of the opening to secure first place.
He finished all 35 nuggets with about a minute to spare.
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Tipton, who finished third in November's hot dog eating contest, credited his victory to a strategy of eating the nuggets individually, chewing each three times and then downing "a shot of water."
"I knew I'd be able to eat the most, but I didn't know if I would be the fastest," he admitted afterward.
Freshman Aubrey Bonhivert said that although she usually enjoys watching the basketball games from the comfort of her Alspaugh Dormitory commons room, watching it in Cameron on the projection televisions added a new level of fun.
"Having all the fans there for camaraderie-not to mention for support when we fell behind-made the game come alive," she said.
The evening, however, was not without a few hiccups.
The first-year rock lobster dance contest cut into the second half of the game, and an announcement of a canned food drive during the heat of the second half brought the crowd together in a chorus of boos.
Still, the evening was an overall success, Ganatra said.
He noted that if Duke makes it to the NCAA Final Four this March, Campus Council will put together a similar event.
"Next year, we're going to try to make [the event] a tradition," he said.