It's fitting Jim Boeheim is at the helm for the Orange for the latest installment of SU vs. Duke, as Boeheim was also involved in the first meeting between the two schools back on March 12, 1966.
Playing alongside Dave Bing, Boeheim, a senior at the time, notched 15 points in a 91-81 SU loss. Bing scored 10 points and had 8 rebounds in the loss.
The two squads met again in 1971 in Madison Square Garden. This time around, Boeheim wasn't a player but an assistant on coach Roy Danforth's staff. The December matchup resulted in a 74-72 victory for the Orange, with Mike Lee's 23 points leading both teams.
It took another 18 years for SU and Duke to meet again, as the #1 Orange traveled to Greensboro to take on the #6 Blue Devils in an ACC-Big East Challenge. Mike Krzyzewski and Boeheim were the head coaches for their respective teams. This December 6th matchup was another close one, as Duke tied the game with a David Henderson layup with 14 seconds left. But, with the game on the line SU's Dave Johnson was fouled by Christian Laettner, making the two free throws and ensuring a 78-76 victory. Stevie Thompson scored 21 points and Derrick Coleman grabbed 19 rebounds in the SU win.
The most recent SU vs. Duke meeting took place on March 20th, 1998, when the two squads met in the NCAA Sweet Sixteen in St. Petersburg, Florida. The Orange lineup had stars like Jason Hart, Ryan Blackwell, Etan Thomas and Todd Burgan, while Duke had dynamic freshman (and future NBA star) Elton Brand. The Blue Devils had the lead for virtually the entire game, but SU went on a big second half run led by Burgan, tying the game up at 49 at one point late in the second half. But, Brand and the Blue Devils were too much, with the Blue Devils advancing to the Elite 8 with the 80-67 victory. Brand finished with a double-double 20 points and 14 assists. Burgan led SU with 20 points and 10 rebounds.
After four meetings in five decades, the series is knotted up at 2-2.
So, with the Orange at 20-0 and the Blue Devils at 17-4, another thrilling chapter of this renewed rivalry will take place in front of 35,000 plus in the Carrier Dome on Saturday.