Sunday, September 30, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* No. 4 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1953-54 Men's Basketball - Not that different from the team that won the championship game of the 1955 National Invitation Tournament, this version of the basketball Dukes lost in the championship round of the NIT to the College of the Holy Cross.
  The 1953-54 Dukes Ballers went 23-6 -- not that dissimilar, again, to the next year's squad's 22-4 -- and garnered a very impressive No. 5 national ranking from the Associated Press.
  Dick Ricketts was a leader and an All-American for this team and went on to an NBA (and MLB actually as well) career. He was taken with the first overall selection by the Milwaukee/St. Louis Hawks in the 1955 NBA Draft.

(Image: Current NBA Logo, Copyright National Basketball Association)

Friday, September 28, 2007

Dukes Men's BB a Sleeper

From the Duquesne Athletics' Web Site:

"Basketball Times, the nationally-respected college basketball publication, has named the 2007-08 Duquesne Dukes as one of four 'Under the Radar Guys' in its October issue. It is the first time in the four-year history of the annual 'Under the Radar' issue that a team has been chosen.

"Editor John Akers annually runs nearly every projected Division I starter through an efficiency rating known as the 'Larry Bird formula' - a plus/minus system of positive and negative statistics - and takes note of those players who jump out unexpectedly. They then run those players through another filter - testing their efficiency again, but against better teams - before making final decisions.

"This year it is the Dukes along with Florida center Marreese Speights, Georgia Tech guard Lewis Clinch and Utah center Luke Nevill that were chosen as under the radar guys.

"Says Akers in the 'From the editor ...' portion of the October issue, '... no one in four years' worth of 'Under the Radar Guys' has jumped out like the Duquesne Dukes.'

"A three-page feature inside tells the Duquesne story.

"Kieron Achara, of whom Akers says 'Kieron Achara might have been the nation's most under-rated player, his terrific individual season hidden by a late start, limited minutes and a losing season,' graces the cover."

(Image: October 2007 Issue of Basketball Times, Copyright Basketball Times)

Monday, September 24, 2007

Work from the Blog Host

Enjoy... Don't hesitate to share your thoughts either.

Duquesne University Football Article

Pittsburgh Penguins/Pirates Article

*OPINION PIECE* No. 5 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1936 Football - Not much more can be said about this tremedous football team.
  The 1936 Dukes gridders garnered a No. 14 Associated Press ranking while posting an 8-2 record, capped-off by a win in the 1937 New Year's Day Orange Bowl.
  To this day, the 1937 Orange Bowl win remains Duquesne Football's only official major bowl game victory.
  Guided by the almost forgotten Coach Clipper Smith, this team's only two losses came by a combined nine points. One of those losses was by a mere 2-0 score. The Dukes shut out seven teams this year.
  Mike Basrak, an Associated Press All-American and 1937 Orange Bowl MVP, was selected in the first round of the NFL draft in 1937.

(Image: Current National Football League Logo, Copyright National Football League)

Saturday, September 22, 2007


  A few mistakes in facts have recently been made. The mistakes pointed out by an anonymous reader/commenter occurred in the "*OPINION PIECE* No. 7 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History" post and have since been corrected.
  Dukes Chat regrets the errors and thanks the reader/commenter.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* No. 6 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1949-50 Men's Basketball - Duquesne University's finest basketball team of the 1940s -- yes, 1950 is the last year of the 1940s -- enters this countdown at No. 6.
  "Dudey" Moore's Dukes climbed all the way to a No. 2 Associated Press ranking this year and posted a 23-6 record in advancing all the way to the Final Four of the National Invitation Tournament.
  Lest we forget, the NIT was the premier college basketball tournament in the country during this time period.

(Image: Current National Invitation Tournament Logo, Copyright National Collegiate Athletic Association)

Monday, September 17, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* No. 7 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1968-69 Men's Basketball - Simply put, this team's credentials are outstanding and go a long way in cementing Duquesne's place in college basketball lore.
  A 21-5 overall record this season for "Red" Manning's Dukes earned them a No. 9 Associated Press ranking, as the team reached the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Championship Tournament.
  This was Duquesne's best sports team of the 1960s and easily one of its greatest basketball teams ever.
  Consider this about Duquesne's competition this season. The team played six games against teams ranked in the Associated Press' top 16, including three of its final four.

[Image: Former Duquesne University Basketball coaches "Red" Manning (right) and "Dudey" Moore (left), Copyright Duquesne University]

Friday, September 14, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* No. 8 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1939 Football - Duquesne University Football's 1939 edition is often overlooked in terms of Duquesne's greatest football teams ever. The Dukes' success in bowl games from this time period and the mid-major powerhouses of the Greg Gattuso era often overshadow this team... unjustly.
  Keeping in mind that Duquesne Football was competing at a higher level in 1939 than it was during the Gattuso era, you can logically place this team above any of Gattuso's. And, keeping in mind that Duquesne Football was undefeated in 1939 with a very respectable schedule, you can sure argue its place on this countdown.
  Not only was this team undefeated (8-0-1), but it also garnered a No. 10 ranking from the Associated Press.
  Easily the biggest win of this season came when Duquesne visited and upset the then-No. 1 ranked (AP) University of Pittsburgh, 21-13. In the 1939 season finale, both Duquesne and its opponent -- Detroit College (now the University of Detroit Mercy) -- came into the game undefeated and untied. The game ended with a score of 10-10.

(Image: NCAA Logo, Copyright National Collegiate Athletic Association)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Women's BB Full Schedule

  The full 2007-08 Duquesne University Women's Basketball schedule was recently released. To view it, click here.

(Image: Duquesne University Women's Basketball Team, Copyright Duquesne University)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* No. 9 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1951-52 Men's Basketball - The first basketball squad creeps into this countdown of greatest Duquesne University Athletics teams at No. 9.
  This team certainly wasn't the greatest of its kind in Duquesne Athletics history, but its accomplishments are very hard to overlook.
  A 23-4 record under the legendary Coach Donald "Dudey" Moore got the Dukes to a No. 4 ranking in the Associated Press' College Basketball Poll that season. Moore's 1951-52 team also took home fourth place honors in the National Invitation Tournament -- the most prestigious collegiate basketball tournament in the country at the time -- and made it to the Elite Eight round of the NCAA Basketball Championship.

(Image: Associated Press Logo, Copyright New York Newspaper Publishers Association)

Sunday, September 9, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* Fortune Shines on Dukes

  Duquesne Men's Basketball finally catches a break.
  In light of the campus shootings last year, Robert Mitchell's departure and Stuard Baldonado's recent legal troubles, it was more than refreshing to see that Lady Luck was at least temporarily wearing red and blue when the Dukes' 2007-08 Atlantic Ten Conference schedule was released.
  Although the Dukes' 2007-08 Atlantic Ten opponents have been known for some time, the specific dates and times for games against those opponents have only recently been announced.
  The fortunate highlights: The Dukes open league play at home for the first time since the 1999-2000 season, they will not have more than two consecutive road games for the entire season AND, combined with a three-game homestand against non-league foes, they will have two three-game homestands.
  And lest we forget, the (non-league) City Game against the University of Pittsburgh is also at home this season.

(Image: Coach Ron Everhart, Copyright Duquesne University)

*OPINION PIECE* No. 10 Greatest Team in Duquesne Athletics History

1933 Football - The team with a 10-1-0 season and a victory in the 1934 Festival of Palms Bowl starts this countdown off.
  The Festival of Palms Bowl was the forerunner to the annual Orange Bowl, which Duquesne University Football would eventually win in 1937. Unlike the Orange Bowl though, the University of Miami (Fl.) was guaranteed an invite to the Festival of Palms Bowl. The NCAA, thus, does not officially consider the Festival of Palms Bowls to be official bowl games. This fact puts Duquesne's 1933 football team down to No. 10 on this countdown despite its outstanding record and impressive performance in 1933 against Miami -- 33-7. (A true bowl game would have pitted Duquesne against a better team.)
  Make no mistake about it though. Miami is and always was a solid college football program, and this postseason victory was still a mighty accomplishment -- enough of an accomplishment, coupled with Duquesne's overall record for the 1933 season, to put this team on the countdown.

(Image: Miami Beach Palm Trees Painting, Copyright

Saturday, September 8, 2007


  After a slight delay due to extenuating circumstances, the Top Ten Teams Countdown will debut TOMORROW.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

*OPINION PIECE* Mitchell's Departure a Positive Sign for Dukes

  It's never a good thing to lose your leading scorer from one season to the next, regardless of the reason(s), but the departure of Robert Mitchell from Duquesne University Men's Basketball still has to be construed as a positive sign for the Dukes.
  Although his relationship with Coach Ron Everhart is/was less than ideal, rumors have it that Mitchell's decision to leave the program was grounded more in his prospective playing time than a conflict of philosophies with his head coach.
  A look around the team's roster this year combined with common sense puts Mitchell out of the starting five and unlikely to reprise his role as one of Duquesne's top point-scorers, let alone the top scorer.
  A player with Mitchell's personality wouldn't be best served by playing at Duquesne, and it does appear as though Mitchell realized that.
  Certainly, it would have been nice to have him available off of the bench for the Dukes during the 2007-08 season and beyond, but it says a lot about the program right now that even last season's Atlantic Ten Conference Rookie of the Year can't find playing time on this team.

(Image: Robert Mitchell, Copyright Duquesne University)