More positives than negatives in Duke bowl loss
Posted December 28, 2012
Charlotte, N.C. — Duke should have won their bowl game.
If you place the emphasis on the word "should," as in "Duke SHOULD have won their bowl game," a negative connotation might come to mind - one that suggests missed opportunities.
But if you change the emphasis to the word "Duke," an entirely new line of thinking becomes available. DUKE should have won their bowl game. Considering that hasn't happened since JFK was President-Elect, it's pretty meaningful. Slideshow: Duke and Cincinnati battle in Belk Bowl
Duke no longer has to play a perfect game to beat a good team. Cincinnati wound up being a 10-win team, the kind of team that has throttled Duke teams of the past. But this Duke team essentially had the Bearcats defeated before a goal line fumble and a bit of bad pass defense dramatically changed the outcome.
As Nietzsche once said, "He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying." Duke is now somewhere in the walking, running and climbing phase in terms of football. But they've come a long way in a relatively short time. And while their loss to Cincinnati may be the very definition of heart-breaking, it also underscores how competitive this team has become now.
I'll let outgoing senior wide receiver Conner Vernon sum it all up: "Duke football is relevant again," he said.
Well put, Conner.