2012 was kind to the Duke football team, despite the dramating 48-34 loss to Cincinnati in last night’s Belk Bowl. The game was Duke’s first bowl game in 18 years and capped a busy year for the Blue Devils.
With the season over and 2012 coming to a close, here are 10 of the most interesting stories from The Chronicle about the team from the year:
- In the Spring, Sean Renfree wasn’t the best quarterback on campus—that honor belonged to Peyton Manning, who spent time rehabbing at the Duke facilities and training with head coach David Cutcliffe, who was Manning’s offensive coordinator at Tennessee. Manning’s visit put Duke center stage in the football world, a big deal for the team’s recruiting and hype.
- Prior to the season, Duke hired John Latina as the new offensive line coach. More than hiring a coach, Cutcliffe brought in a longtime friend and companion.
- In an injury-riddled season for Duke, safety turned out to be the least safe position for Duke.
- Brandon Connette came to Duke as a quarterback, but turned out to be the team’s utility man—playing QB, running back, wide receiver, and even some defense.
- Chris Tavarez—who has since left the Duke football team—is more notable for his successful acting career.
- A profile or Ross Cockrell, who turned his freshman year struggles into a career season.
- Everett Edwards, a top Duke cornerback recruit, has grown more and more into a top prospect nationally. Even Nick Saban told him he’s the best cornerback prospect he had seen this year.
- A profile of Sean Renfree, the understated leader of the Duke football team.
- A look back at Tyree Watkins, who after being kicked off the football team for domestic abuse will get a second chance at Wagner.
- And lastly, meet Sue Wasiolek—more commonly known as just Dean Sue—who might be the most dedicated Duke football fan around.