HOUSTON—The Blue Devils may have found their good luck charm deep in the heart of Texas.
The area behind Duke's bench during its 66-52 Elite Eight win against Gonzaga Sunday was stocked deep with Texas royalty. President George H.W. Bush and his wife Barbara were on hand, as well as Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, tight end Jason Witten and head coach Jason Garrett.
This, of course, was not the first time these Texas icons have watched the Blue Devils play. President Bush became the first sitting or former president to take in a game at Cameron Indoor Stadium when Duke knocked off N.C. State 95-60 Jan. 18, 2014. Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski and the 41st president are close friends thanks to their mutual involvement in the organization C-Change, a non-profit committed to assembling cancer leaders and eliminating the disease.
Krzyzewski took time just before tipoff to greet the former President and First Lady. Bush received a rousing ovation from the Houston crowd after the NRG Stadium public address announcer recognized members of the United States military.
Members of the Cowboys have come to the Blue Devils' Senior Night each of the last two years. Romo and Garrett watched Duke topple North Carolina 93-81 on Senior Night March 8, 2014, when the Dallas quarterback played PIG against Blue Devil guard Quinn Cook and cozied up in the stands next to then-signee Jahlil Okafor for some viral selfies.
The Cowboys contingent returned a year later to see the Blue Devils blow out Wake Forest 94-51 on Senior Night March 4, bringing Witten and running back DeMarco Murray—who has since left Dallas for the Philadelphia Eagles. Romo migrated from his spot behind the Duke bench in the second half and joined the Cameron Crazies, much to the delight on the crowd.
Duke is now a combined 4-0 in games attended by either President Bush or members of the Dallas Cowboys organization. So that begs the question—do either of them have plans next weekend?
Given their track record, more than a few people wouldn't mind seeing them in Indianapolis for the Final Four.
Get Overtime, all Duke athletics
Signup for our editorially curated, weekly newsletter. Cancel at any time.