Duke fan seeking $827 refund after Wednesday's postponement

Posted February 14

With snow but no game to go to, some Tar Heels fans got creative.

— Wednesday’s North Carolina-Duke game was postponed just three and a half hours before the scheduled tip and well after many fans had begun making their way to the Dean E. Smith Center in Chapel Hill. Shortly thereafter, conspiracy theories flew on social media and fans that had attempted to brave the elements retreated to their homes and hotels in anger.

One Duke fan, Jack Markham, said the lack of foresight by the university and the delayed postponement are unacceptable. He is seeking compensation from Duke Athletics Director Kevin White in the amount of $827.95 for his efforts, adding that he will not be able to attend the make-up contest on Feb. 20.

“I don’t know really what to expect from the university, but I do want some recognition for the fans like myself that were betrayed by the lack of planning and effort,” Markham said Friday. “It seems like they didn’t put forth lots of effort having hours and hours to prepare.”

Markham is asking Duke for returns of $162 for two tickets, $58 for lodging at the Red Roof Inn, $37.95 for the unused parking pass in the Smith-Bowles Lot, $170 in fuel costs for him and his friend who made the trip from Knoxville, Tenn. and $400 in “mental anguish.”

“I know it is difficult to calculate anguish,” Markham said. “But I love Duke greatly and I felt betrayed. It’s not like this was a Duke-Vermont game.”

Markham, who lives in Southern Pines, NC, did not attend Duke, but said that he has grown up with the UNC-Duke rivalry and chose the Blue Devils as his team when he was 8-years-old. He was set to attend his first ever Duke-UNC basketball game Wednesday.

After the cancellation, and realizing he could not attend the make-up game, Markham and his friend sold their two tickets for $238 – what he called “a low-ball offer.” That amount was itemized as a deduction in his invoice to White along with a $300 discount for extended support and a $150 discount for being a finalist in a fan contest.

In 2009, an Oregon fan named Tony Seminary asked for a refund from then-head football coach Chip Kelly citing an underwhelming performance. He later received a $439 check in the mail from the coach.

Markham and his friend were on Fordham Boulevard, less than a mile from the arena, when the announcement was made that there would be no game.

In his claims, he added that “Duke was aware of the storm and had time to prepare.” He said that Duke, being one of the top universities nationally, “possesses resources and minds exceptional enough.”

Markham closed his inquiry by saying, “After years of loyalty and thousands of dollars in Duke tickets and paraphernalia, I’m eager to see how your organization treats its most true-blue supporters.”


This story is closed for comments.

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  • Riddickfield Feb 20, 9:27 a.m.

    Red roof inn? LOL! Clearly this guy is a Duke graduate and a high roller.

  • KT donated a coloring book to ke Feb 16, 12:49 p.m.

    I'm surprised so many kerliner fans are commenting on this. $827 is about a whole month's pay for most of those McDonald's workers.

  • iron fist Feb 16, 8:38 a.m.

    Its time to remove this non story for the sports section

    — Posted by iron fist

    From the sports section.

  • iron fist Feb 16, 5:41 a.m.

    Its time to remove this non story for the sports section

  • Smokin Feb 15, 7:52 p.m.

    I'm a Carolina fan and think this whole lawsuit is crazy. It's not just Duke's decision to postpone a game. The weather was bad and it got bad very rapidly when the snow started. The team bus was not able to get them to UNC. There are NCAA rules about playing games and this was to be a televised game so both UNC and Duke, I'm sure, had to get the ok from the network as they both were under contract to play. In the end, the only important thing on Wednesday night was that both teams were safe. The Duke/Carolina game is a highlight of the season but not worth anyone getting hurt in order to play it. I'm sure those two guys are lawyers with nothing better to do.

  • bowerpaige Feb 15, 5:53 p.m.

    This story is too priceless for words.

    It makes me not stop grinning, real biglike.
    View More

    — Posted by ClassyChapel

    To bad the majority of unc basketball players past/present can't read it . now im grinning

    — Posted by badcompany1023

    I would give you a sticker for your retort, but you have no idea how to write a full sentence with proper capitalization and punctuation.

  • badcompany1023 Feb 15, 3:42 p.m.

    This story is too priceless for words.

    It makes me not stop grinning, real biglike.
    View More

    — Posted by ClassyChapel

    To bad the majority of unc basketball players past/present can't read it . now im grinning

  • Dreamchaser Feb 15, 3:41 p.m.

    Duke players posing to look tough.
    Now add a few flakes of snow.

  • mxteam44 Feb 15, 3:39 p.m.

    Duke fans agree that this was a Kowardly postponement.

    — Posted by 4tarheels

    This Duke fan doesn't agree I work about 20 minutes from home made it wednesday in about 3... View More

    — Posted by badcompany1023

    Agreed. Interesting that the majority of posts here are fans of other teams and had nothing... View More

    — Posted by justcommonsense

    Yes, the roads were dangerous, but Coach K and Duke had known this storm was coming for several days. When they reported on tv that Duke would be leaving for Chapel Hill around 6:30, I knew that was pushing their luck. The roads had been in gridlock since 2:30 that afternoon. I'm sure K isn't the one who makes the travel arrangements, but somebody on his staff dropped the ball big-time!

  • aweathersby Feb 15, 3:30 p.m.

    duke sucks get over it




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