UNC, Duke and NC State In 2024 Sweet 16:
Have These Neighbors Ever Done This Before?
Have They Ever Made The Same Elite Eight Together?

By David Glenn
North Carolina Sports Network

The Triangle trio of North Carolina, Duke and NC State already has pulled off an impressive rarity this season, and with just one more win (each) this week, the long-time rivals would enter truly unprecedented territory.

The Tar Heels, the Blue Devils and the Wolfpack lead the ACC in some very important categories, including conference championships. The Devils have 22, the Heels have 18, and the Pack recently ended its 37-year drought by capturing the 2024 title, bringing its total to 11.

ACC Tournament Titles (1954-2024)

22 — Duke
19 — (All Other Schools Combined)
18 — North Carolina
11 — NC State

The same three programs, all among the founding members of the Atlantic Coast Conference in 1953, are among only 15 nationally that have won multiple NCAA championships. The Tar Heels have six, the Blue Devils five and the Wolfpack two.

NCAA Championships

11 — UCLA
8 — Kentucky
6 — North Carolina
5 — Connecticut, Duke, Indiana
4 — Kansas
3 — Louisville, Villanova
2 — Cincinnati, Florida, Michigan State, NC State, Oklahoma State, San Francisco

Although Carolina, Duke and State are no strangers to the second week of the NCAA Tournament, the presence of all three schools in the same Sweet 16 is a rarity. It has happened only five times.

UNC/Duke/NCSU In Same Sweet 16
(With Head Coach, Top Players)


UNC — Dean Smith; Brad Daugherty*, Kenny Smith*, Steve Hale*
Duke — Mike Krzyzewski; Johnny Dawkins*, Mark Alarie*, David Henderson
NCSU — Jim Valvano; Chris Washburn*, Nate McMillan, Charles Shackleford


UNC — Dean Smith; Kevin Madden*, Steve Bucknall*, JR Reid
Duke — Mike Krzyzewski; Danny Ferry*, Phil Henderson, Robert Brickey
NCSU — Jim Valvano; Chucky Brown*, Rodney Monroe*, Chris Corchiani*


UNC! — Roy Williams; Sean May*, Raymond Felton*, Jawad Williams*
Duke — Mike Krzyzewski; JJ Redick*, Shelden Williams*, Daniel Ewing*
NCSU — Herb Sendek; Julius Hodge*, Ilian Evtimov, Engin Atsur


UNC — Roy Williams; Marcus Paige*, Brice Johnson*, Kennedy Meeks
Duke! — Mike Krzyzewski; Jahlil Okafor*, Quinn Cook*, Tyus Jones*
NCSU — Mark Gottfried; Trevor Lacey*, Ralston Turner, Cat Barber


UNC — Hubert Davis; RJ Davis*, Armando Bacot*, Harrison Ingram*
Duke — Jon Scheyer; Kyle Filipowski*, Jeremy Roach*, Jared McCain
NCSU — Kevin Keatts; DJ Horne*, DJ Burns, Mohamed Diarra
* — All-ACC selection that season
! — won national championship that season

To this point, there has never been an NCAA Tournament (an event launched in 1939) in which the Tar Heels, the Blue Devils and the Wolfpack all advanced to the Elite Eight.

If UNC beats Alabama on Thursday night, then Duke (against #1 seed Houston) and State (against #2 seed Marquette) both win on Friday night, the Triangle trio would enter truly unprecedented territory. All three would play in the Elite Eight, of course, and the Blue Devils and the Wolfpack would face each other on Sunday night, with a Final Four bid on the line.