Rodney Hood compares Tobacco Road basketball to the Iron Bowl

Redshirt sophomore Rodney Hood has never played in a Duke-North Carolina basketball game, but he will be a key piece to the 237th installment of the Tobacco Road Rivalry when the Blue Devils and Tar Heels square off tonight in Chapel Hill.

Hood said he still followed the Duke-North Carolina rivalry when he was growing up in Meridian, Miss. Living in SEC country, Hood was able to contrast the relationship between the Blue Devils and Tar Heels with the annual Iron Bowl between Auburn and Alabama.

"It's different. I think Auburn-Alabama is truly hate. When I was growing up, this was one of the most respected rivalries—still is the most respected rivalry in all of sports," Hood said.

Although Hood contends that the Duke-North Carolina rivalry is built on mutual respect, the Blue Devil captain said he cannot wait to participate in the game for the first time. Hood added that he has followed the rivalry closely since 2001, when he was just eight years old.

"Just watching this game, you always wanted to play in a game like this. It's just a different dynamic, but I think it's just as big," he said.


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