The independent news organization of Duke University

Historic moments: Duke football dominates in Chapel Hill to secure a share of the ACC title

The 1989 football team was the most recent Duke squad to take home the ACC crown.
The 1989 football team was the most recent Duke squad to take home the ACC crown.

The Chronicle’s best wins bracket previously introduced some of Duke men’s basketball’s top moments  throughout the years. This new series coincides with those moments,  shedding light on some of Duke Athletics’ other highlights throughout  the school’s storied history. We hope you enjoy this stroll down memory lane. Today's moment: Duke football captures a share of first place in the ACC with a 41-0 drubbing of North Carolina .

Say cheese.

After Duke decimated North Carolina on November 18, 1989, then-head coach Steve Spurrier lined his team up for a celebratory photo in front of the scoreboard. Those repping powder blue did not take kindly to the photo then and it still holds a sour place in the memories of Tar Heel fans. 

With the Victory Bell residing in Chapel Hill for the majority of its existence, the Blue Devils’ 41-0 beatdown of the Tar Heels was and still is unprecedented for Duke football.

Duke’s blossoming freshman quarterback, Dave Brown, uncorked a 479 passing yard performance that still sits atop the Blue Devil record books for most passing yards in a single game. Clarkston Hines, arguably the greatest receiver in Blue Devil history, added 162 receiving yards of his own, sending him over the 1,000 yard mark for a third time. 

Spurrier showed no remorse for the lopsided number Duke hung on the scoreboard. There was a fourth quarter flea flicker and an extra point kicked by Duke’s tide end to go along with it being Duke’s largest margin of victory in the 132 year history of this matchup. To add insult to injury, the Tar Heels suffered their worst loss in the series history on their home turf in Kenan Memorial Stadium. 

The victory, the team's seventh in a row, secured Duke’s co-ownership of the ACC title with Virginia. It was its first in over 20 years and is still the most recent ACC championship the Blue Devils have claimed.

While it is unlikely Duke will be getting ACC championship rings in the near future, the 1989 season will never be forgotten. An 8-3 regular season record sent the Blue Devils to the All-American Bowl where they suffered a 49-21 loss to Texas Tech. 

Discussion

Share and discuss “Historic moments: Duke football dominates in Chapel Hill to secure a share of the ACC title” on social media.