Here we go.
The Midwest Region represents the only region in the year’s wild NCAA Tournament to have had the top two seeds advance forward to the Elite 8.
It was the respected guard play of both Duke and Louisville which carried through the Sweet 16 round. The Cardinals got 31 points from Russ Smith, while Duke senior Seth Curry punched the Blue Devils’ ticket to the Elite 8 with 29 of his own.
Now the two will square off on Sunday evening, as Duke and Coach K face Louisville and Rick Pitino for a right to go to the Final Four.
This contest will ironically enough represent the second meeting between these two schools this season. Louisville and Duke met once before in November as part of the championship game of the Battle 4 Atlantisdown in the Bahamas. Duke, who began the season on an absolute tear, got the best of Louisville that night, winning the tournament and sending the Cardinals home with their first loss of the season.
Now keep in mind, Duke won that game without starting forward Gorgui Dieng. The junior and potential first round draft choice is obviously a big key to the Cardinals’ success, so now Duke will have to be ready to face a full roster here in the Elite 8.
A ticket to Atlanta is on the line, will Louisville seek or revenge? Or, is Duke planning to sweep the Cardinals and advance to the Final Four?