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Stars in Cameron: Todd Gurley, Ken Griffey Jr., Spike Lee join Obama at Duke-North Carolina game

Along with former President Barack Obama, a slew of celebrities attended Wednesday’s game between No. 1 Duke and No. 8 North Carolina at Cameron Indoor Stadium. 

Among them were MLB Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr. and film director Spike Lee, according to the News & Observer’s Jonathan Alexander. 

Griffey played most of his years in the big leagues with the Seattle Mariners and the Cincinnati Reds. Griffey, a 13-time All-Star who hit the seventh-most home runs in history, has ties to Duke in his second cousin, Darrell Harding Jr. A three-star wide receiver, Harding Jr. enrolled at Duke in January.

Lee is an avid basketball fan and a prominent film director. He recently directed Oscar Best Picture nominee BlacKkKlansman, a film for which he was also nominated for Best Director. 

Los Angeles Rams’ star running back Todd Gurley also attended Duke’s practice Tuesday before going to Wednesday's game. Gurley is a Blue Devil fan who spent some of his childhood years in Tarboro, N.C.—about an hour and a half from Durham.

Growing up in Tarboro, Gurley didn’t know much about Duke or even where it was, ESPN reported. But he liked playing as the Blue Devils on video games, and he thought it was “pretty cool” when he discovered Duke was relatively close to Tarboro, making the Blue Devils' men's basketball team his favorite squad. 

Greg Olsen, a tight end for the Carolina Panthers, visited Jack Coombs Field in April and was also in the building Wednesday, along with his son Tate, who met Obama. 

Ben Leonard

Managing Editor 2018-19, 2019-2020 Features & Investigations Editor 

A member of the class of 2020 hailing from San Mateo, Calif., Ben is The Chronicle's Towerview Editor and Investigations Editor. Outside of the Chronicle, he is a public policy major working towards a journalism certificate, has interned at the Tampa Bay Times and NBC News and frequents Pitchforks. 


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