The Blue Devils won their third of five national championships by knocking off Arizona in the 2001 national championship game, and the Wildcats advanced to the Elite Eight in 2011 on the back of a West Regional Semifinal win against Duke.
Now, the history-laden battle will commence again after a decade off, as Duke has announced a home-and-home series with Arizona beginning in the 2023-24 season.
First, the Wildcats will travel to Cameron Indoor Stadium on Nov. 19, 2023, to take on the Blue Devils in the programs’ first meeting since 2013. Then, the following season, Duke will make its way to Tucson, Ariz., on Nov. 21, 2024. More information on the matchups is still to come.
"I have tremendous respect for Tommy Lloyd and Arizona," Duke head coach Jon Scheyer said in a team release Monday. "For our team, I'm grateful for what I know will be important early-season tests. For our fans and for college basketball, it will be exciting to see these storied programs over the next two years come together in two of the greatest on-campus venues in the sport."
Arizona head coach Tommy Lloyd, meanwhile, said, "We felt this was a great opportunity to play two games against an incredible program like Duke. Both programs are national brands with a rich history and have played some memorable games against each other, especially in the NCAA Tournament. But Coach Scheyer and I both felt these games would benefit our programs and be something that our fans would be excited about."
The Wildcats hold a 5-4 advantage against Duke in the all-time series, with six of those games happening at neutral sites. The last time a Duke-Arizona matchup was played at one team's home court was a 1991 Wildcat victory in Tuscon.
The series' announcement comes in a turbulent time for the NCAA. Conference realignment has rocked the collegiate sports world, with an exodus from the Pac-12 the latest news to blur the future of conferences as we know it. However, the ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 announced an alliance last year, seemingly in reaction to the continued growth of the Big 12 and SEC. Now, Duke seemingly reaps the benefits of that alliance along with Arizona.
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Sasha Richie is a Trinity junior and a sports managing editor of The Chronicle's 118th volume.