This segment is part of We Hate Duke Week, which we’ll be running with this whole week since the Terps don’t play. I’m personally going to enjoy the hell out of pointing out how much I hate Duke for a few more days. I encourage you to let me know if I’ve missed anyone in the comments section.
5.) Shavlik Randolph, 2002-2005
Lamer than: a penny
Not as lame as: crushing poverty
Shavlik was way before Sulaimon and Kyrie dominated for Duke. Shavlik is a product of the Coach K era where it seemed like he got bored with winning and decided to try doing it with a bunch of nonathletic white guys. Shav was probably the antithesis of that movement, which failed miserably and forced Duke into reverting back to mid-90’s recruiting.
Shavlik coined the saying around my household “Just because you can dunk doesn’t make you an athlete.” Specifically for the many times he got burnt on the basketball court for being a completely mediocre talent. I used to pray for this joke to get on the court against Maryland, if only because he almost assured a Terps victory with his play. His record against the Terps? 1-5, including two years where Duke got swept.
He also had this annoying, mid-90’s hair swoosh that looked like it required copious amounts of hair gel to create, and not even gale force winds could reshape.
Of course, Shavlik left early for the NBA before everyone realized that he had as much skill as a kindergartener would during accelerated reading classes. But if you think I’m not looking out for one of his kids to play at Duke so Mayland can immediately have a stroke of luck, you’re kidding yourself.
4.) Greg Paulus, 2005-2009
Lamer than: Furbies
Not as lame as: North Korea
Ohh man did I ever hate Greg Paulus. Oh man did everyone hate Greg Paulus. His likeability factor was similar to congress after allowing the U.S. to default on their gigantic AMEX credit line (or something like that). He was the guy who wore a mouth guard and rec-specs to open gym and hard-fouled anyone who came near the rim. I mean, this is from a Duke BleacherReport.com article in 2009:
“Paulus had the unique ability to not only be hated by opposing players and fans, but Duke fans as well!
He just had something about him, that no matter what you couldn’t allow yourself to like the guy. As a Duke fan, his constant poor decision making, and his belief that actually could hit any shot he took was enough to make a hater out of me. I can only imagine how fans of other teams felt.”
Paulus sucked so much at basketball that he got benched his senior year in favor of a sophomore (Nolan Smith). Of course, that didn’t stop Dick Vitale from sporting a rock solid chub every time Paulus hoisted a midrange turnaround jumper that had no chance of going in, yet was summarily described as “heady” or “gutsy.” And no, slapping the floor and screaming loud enough to pop your rampant face and back acne doesn’t constitute good defense or solid play.
Paulus finally left Duke and decided to try his hand at quarterbacking the woeful Syracuse football team. He finished up with 13 touchdowns and 14 interceptions on 2,025 yards. But in my book, you don’t get an AttaBoy for being mediocre and winning four games. Paulus, you get an F for flaccid arm.
3.) Brian Zoubek
Lamer than: Teletubbies
Not as lame as: Genocide
Brian Zoubek was the guy you were forced to pick during recess basketball because he maybe kinda if you looked at him right, had something that could make your team better. At 7’1, he was tall enough to play center on a basketball court, but that’s about where his abilities ended. Zoubek was so bad defensively that he tried to master the flop to compensate for the fact that he backed into the starting center position because no one else was on the roster. It made everyone hate playing against him, because no one likes a cheap player. But, don’t worry, he got his:
Ed Davis gave him a 250 lb nut crunching of a lifetime for laying down like a fairy boy, which, coincidentally, probably was the nail in the coffin for Zoubek’s future career in the NBA as a journeyman who was worth six fouls. It also likely contributed to his future career as a cream puff maker. I can’t make this stuff up.
2.) Jon Scheyer and Kyle Singler ’06/’07 – ’10/’11
I lump these two together because they both deserve recognition for how lame they were, and because the top spot belongs to one Dookie. Both these players make the list because of how aesthetically unpleasing they were to glance at. Outside of Shelden Williams, watching these two guys on he court was like having a mini-Tiger Woods tee off on your retinas for 40 minutes.
For Scheyer, it wasn’t so much his basketball play that we hated, it was that every game he had a new, ugly face to have to stare at. His facial expressions ranged from “alien probing” to “sitting naked in a den full of bears in heat.” The faces he made while playing hoops made Crohn’s disease look like a cakewalk. Look no further than this video:
As for Kyle Singler: look up any 1940’s Nazi propaganda ad, and you’re likely to find him leading the charge into hell. Aside from looking sneakily similar to an SS war criminal (which did nothing but propagate the perception that Duke is straight racist), he also looked like a kid who was kept in a basement his whole life, relegated to Mario Party with himself. Singler looks like Skeletor with slightly more pigment. You have to wonder what SPF he uses; 50? 150? Elmer’s glue?
On the court, he was lame because he never got any better after his sophomore year, and if that doesn’t scream “ceiling reached” then I don’t know what does. Sure, he’s in the NBA, but money doesn’t make you look any better. It also doesn’t make up for his potential involvement in WWII…
1.) J.J. Redick, 2002 – 2006
Lamer than: Swish pants in 2013
Not as lame as: Government corruption
The English language lacks the vocabular dexterity to accurately portray just how lame J.J. Redick is. I do not know a single Maryland fan who has ever had anything good to say about him other than “Man, F that guy.” That’s the best we’ve got for you.
What we can’t get around is that he was a great college player. In fact, he was one of the best college players to ever play the game. What he can’t get around is that Maryland consistently curb stomped him. He lost to Maryland more times than he lost to any other team. Chris McCray and John Gilchrist owned his ass all up and down the court. Granted he only lost to the Terps four times, but that’s more than most teams can say during his career. We owned his ass.
Yes, he’s in the NBA. But I’ll be damned if anyone else tell me J.J. Redick wasn’t a douchebag or that those matchups weren’t great. He inspired so much vitriol around the D.C. area that he is still booed whenever he makes an appearance at the Verizon Center. To this day, I still wouldn’t mind seeing him get suplexed for no real reason.
I hate you J.J. Redick, you are the worst.