The final week of college basketball’s regular season has arrived, which means plenty of in-conference rivalry games across the country this weekend. Of course, no annual battle matches the level of vitriol and excitement of Duke vs. North Carolina. After the Blue Devils got the best of the Tar Heels in Durham to avenge the loss in Coach K’s final home game a year ago, the UNC is desperate for revenge.
The stakes are raised this time around, though, as North Carolina is fighting for their life on the bubble of the NCAA Tournament at the moment. They did pick up a massive win over ACC leader Virginia last Saturday but will need another marquee win, preferably over Duke, in order to feel good about their chances to make the field. So, with an enormous rivalry matchup taking place, the College GameDay crew is headed to Chapel Hill — and they’re calling in one massive Carolina hoops fan to help boost the buzz. That man…none other than country music star Eric Church.
Here was the announcement:
GameDay announces Eric Church as special guest
Bang. What a get for College GameDay and North Carolina. And Church is a legitimate fan, too. Folks may remember that he actually canceled one of his concerts last spring so he could attend the Final Four matchup between Duke and North Carolina. You know, UNC fans, the one where Caleb Love answered Verbal Kint’s question of “How do you shoot the devil in the back?” by sending an arrow right through the spine of the Blue Devil himself, Mike Krzyzewski, in the final moments of a Final Four loss to end his career.
Hate on Church all you want, but he had to be over the moon to get to see Caleb Love knock down that game-winning three to end Coach K’s multi-decade coaching career.
“As a lifelong Carolina basketball fan, I’ve watched Carolina and Duke battle over the years but to have them matchup for the first time in the history of the NCAA Tournament is any sports enthusiast’s dream,” he wrote an in email to fans after the cancellation. Many were fuming at such a disregard for the event. But Eric Church was just a loyal college hoops fan enjoying the chance to see the game of his life.
Now, he’ll hope to get to see a similar type of performance this weekend. Love and Church do seem to go hand in hand, so perhaps more fireworks will ensue on Saturday from the North Carolina point guard with the star singer in attendance.