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Deep in the heart of tobacco country, the Tar Heel State brings out the best of college basketball: Michael Jordan, James Worthy, and Dean Smith; Grant Hill, Christian Laettner, and Mike Krzyzewski; Billy Packer, Tim Duncan, and Bones McKinney; David Thompson, Lorenzo Charles, and Jim Valvano. What these men have in common -- besides being legends in the world of college hoops -- is that they are all part of Big Four basketball in the state of North Carolina. For the last fifty years the Big Four -- North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest, and North Carolina State -- have defined greatness on the hardwood courts.
Nowhere else in America are there four schools with such rich basketball history and tradition located so close to one another. The four grew up within a thirty -- four -- mile radius of one another, and to this day, North Carolina, N.C. State, and Duke are only a half hour's drive apart. (Wake Forest, which had been located nineteen miles west of Duke University and sixteen miles north of North Carolina State, received a hefty gift from the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in 1956 to move to Winston -- Salem, 110 miles due west.) In Four Corners, Winston-Salem Journal sportswriter Joe Menzer chronicles the storied histories, timeless traditions, and fierce rivalries that have placed these four basketball -- crazed schools among the best college programs in the nation.
In North Carolina, college basketball is not a matter of life and death; it's much more important than that. It isn't just that these teams are near one another geographically or that they're very good every year. It's the way the fans embrace their team and hate the other three schools that makes the rivalries so dynamic. Newcomers to the region find themselves forced to choose from among the four. You're either a Wolfpack fan, a Blue Devils fan, a Demon Deacons fan, or a Tar Heels fan -- and if you're not a Tar Heels fan, then you're an automatic member of one of the largest organizations in the state no matter what team you root for: the ABC gang -- Anybody But Carolina.
Menzer traces the history of the greatest concentration of talent, success, and venom in all of college sports, He tells the stories of how these four schools established themselves in an era dominated by big-city schools from New York or California, of the ebb and flow of success that each of these schools has experienced throughout the years, of the point-shaving scandals and recruiting violations that periodically rocked the rivalries between the schools, of the numerous ACC and national championships these teams have won, and of the unforgettable personalities who led the programs and dominated the sport.
From the early days of N.C. State's Everett Case and Wake Forest's Bones McKinney to the retirement of North Carolina's Dean Smith, from North Carolina's triple-overtime victory over Wilt Chamberlain's Kansas team in the 1957 NCAA Finals to Christian Laettner's miraculous buzzer beater against Kentucky in the 1992 Eastern Regional final, Menzer presents the sprawling story of the Big Four in an exciting and dramatic fashion. The first book to chronicle the entire history of life in that area of hoops heaven known as Tobacco Road, Four Corners brings back all the memories that have made basketball in the Tar Heel State the force it is today.
Review: If you want to major in Carolina basketball, this is certainly the primary text. Breezily written, well researched, and rich with anecdotes, Four Corners solidly surveys a remarkable sporting phenomenon: the concentrated quartet of hoop dreamers--UNC, NC State, Duke, and Wake Forest--that dominates the ACC, and, for that matter, the NCAA tournament. Menzer, a sportswriter for the Winston-Salem Journal, tips off in the pre-ACC era of Coach Everett Case at State, and then looks at the teams and programs molded over time by such outsized presences as Frank McGuire, Dean Smith, Jim Valvano, Bones McKinney, and Mike Krzyzewski. "People can talk all they want about the Big Ten," says Duke's charismatic Coach K. "About Michigan and Ohio State and Indiana and Kentucky or whatever, but there's no way that compares. They're in different states. Here, we share the same dry cleaners." Four Corners carefully examines what comes out in the wash and, in the process, airs some pretty good dirty laundry. --Jeff Silverman
Title: Four Corners: How Unc, NC State, Duke, and ...
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 1999
Book Condition: Used: Good
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1999. Book Condition: Good. First Edition. 1 in number line. Former Library book. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Bookseller Inventory # GRP10684740
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1999. Book Condition: Good. First Edition. 1 in number line. Ships from Reno, NV. Former Library book. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Bookseller Inventory # GRP85740491
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1999. Book Condition: Very Good. First Edition. 1 in number line. Former Library book. Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. Bookseller Inventory # GRP13587491
Book Description Simon & Schuster. Hardcover. Book Condition: GOOD. Spine creases, wear to binding and pages from reading. May contain limited notes, underlining or highlighting that does affect the text. Possible ex library copy, thatâ€™ll have the markings and stickers associated from the library. Accessories such as CD, codes, toys, may not be included. Bookseller Inventory # 2589378829
Book Description Simon & Schuster. Hardcover. Book Condition: Very Good. This copy shows very minor wear. Bookseller Inventory # G0684846748I4N00
Book Description Simon & Schuster. Hardcover. Book Condition: Good. Minimal damage to cover and binding. Pages show light use. Bookseller Inventory # G0684846748I3N00
Book Description Simon & Schuster. Book Condition: Fair. Acceptable condition. Book Very Good. No dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # N13F-00088
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: Good. Former library book. Mylar protector included. Ex-Library. Bookseller Inventory # 123526162
Book Description Simon & Schuster, Riverside, New Jersey, U.S.A., 1999. Hard Cover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. 1st. Some black and white photo illustrations. Bookseller Inventory # 016377
Book Description Book Condition: VeryGood. Normal wear and tear to cover and pages. Yellowing to pages - normal for age of paper stock. 30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee. Bookseller Inventory # 3148QS000S2I