The long-standing rivalry between North Carolina and Duke will be reignited as they face off for the Victory Bell.

The long-standing rivalry between North Carolina and Duke will be reignited as they face off for the Victory Bell.

According to a report by Aaron Beard of the Associated Press,

Not too long ago, the Saturday night game between No. 24 North Carolina and Duke was expected to have a big impact on which team would advance to the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game.

The Tar Heels are currently attempting to bounce back from two defeats, while the Blue Devils are facing obstacles due to several significant injuries, which has affected their previous momentum in the season.

The University of North Carolina (UNC) has a record of 7 wins and 2 losses, with a 3-2 record in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). They recently won against Campbell, a team in the Championship Subdivision. This win came after UNC’s drop from being ranked No. 10 nationally to being unranked due to losses against Virginia and Georgia Tech. They are currently getting ready to face their rival team, the Blue Devils, in their last home game of the season. After that, they will have away games against Clemson and North Carolina State to finish the regular season.

The coach, Mack Brown, stated that the team did not receive any favorable treatment with the schedule. He believes that the players will need to be mentally and physically strong in order to handle the upcoming three-game stretch.

Duke is currently facing challenges as they navigate through the month of November. Their quarterback, Riley Leonard, who is skilled in both passing and running, sustained an ankle injury towards the end of the game against Notre Dame. This caused him to miss one game and he is still recovering, which has affected their losses against Florida State and Louisville.

In the end, he was unable to participate in the close victory against Wake Forest last week. Instead, former third-string player Grayson Loftis stepped in and is expected to start against UNC. Additionally, there have been reports of injuries to linemen Graham Barton and Jacob Monk during this period.

Duke coach Mike Elko stated that having five or six injured players at this point in the season is not a significant amount. However, he acknowledges that the impact may feel greater due to the importance of the affected players.

Could this possibly be Maye’s last game at home?

Brown has consistently mentioned that it is probable that this will be Drake Maye’s last season in college football as a highly sought-after NFL player. This could possibly indicate that this will also be his last game playing at home as a member of the Tar Heels team.

Earlier this week, Maye informed journalists that he has not made a decision about his plans for next year. However, he appeared to be inclined against participating in the Senior Day celebrations, stating, “I believe Senior Day is meant for seniors.”

According to Brown, he firmly believes that Maye will declare for the NFL draft.

“I believe it would be impressive for him to make an appearance and have everyone express their gratitude,” Brown stated.


Duke’s rushing game, led by Jordan Waters (564 yards, 10 touchdowns) and Jaquez Moore (481 yards, four TDs), has been consistently effective this season. They are expected to have a strong performance against UNC’s declining run defense in their upcoming game.

Virginia, despite being one of the lowest-performing rushing teams in the Bowl Subdivision, managed to gain 228 yards on the ground. In the fourth quarter, Georgia Tech surpassed this with 246 rushing yards.


The recipient of the Victory Bell, a cart containing a bell from a former railroad engine, is awarded to the victor of the longstanding series that dates back to 1948. The winning team usually decorates the cart in their signature light or dark blue and their players rush to claim and ring the bell as soon as time runs out.


Mack Brown has coached UNC twice and has won all four games against them, with the most recent victory coming on a last-second touchdown in the previous year and a late defensive stand in 2019.

Duke has not defeated a University of North Carolina team coached by Brown since their memorable 41-0 victory on the road in 1989. This game concluded with the Blue Devils, led by Steve Spurrier, posing for a team photo in front of the scoreboard, marking the end of Brown’s first stint as coach in Chapel Hill.


This is Duke’s fifth game against an AP Top 25 team this year. The Blue Devils beat preseason ACC favorite Clemson to open the year, but have lost to Notre Dame, FSU and Louisville since.

The Blue Devils have not faced five ranked opponents in a single season since 1993.