Should Duke haters prefer it to be North Carolina or Saint Peter’s ending Coach K’s career in the Final Four?

So I finished taping the Eye On College Basketball Podcast a little past midnight, about an hour after Duke beat Arkansas convincingly in the Elite Eight to advance to Mike Krzyzewski’s 13th Final Four, tweeted a link to the episode and was preparing to start winding down when I got a random question from a friend: What would be more hilarious — North Carolina or Saint Peter’s ending Coach K’s career next Saturday?

Obviously, neither would be hilarious for Duke fans.

That goes without saying.

But if you consider the question from the perspective of someone who would like to laugh really hard at Krzyzewski not ending his career with a sixth national championship — and there are a lot of people, for whatever reason, who are viewing this from that perspective — the answer, to me, is obvious.

The answer is North Carolina.

Saint Peter’s becoming the first No. 15 seed in NCAA Tournament history to advance to the Final Four, and then also knocking off Duke to end Krzyzewski’s career, would be … unlike anything we’ve ever seen. It would literally be unprecedented. It would sting. But, ultimately, who would clown the Blue Devils then? It wouldn’t be Kentucky fans — because Saint Peter’s also beat Kentucky. So UK fans couldn’t say a word. And it wouldn’t be North Carolina fans — because the only way Saint Peter’s can make the Final Four to face Duke is by beating North Carolina on Sunday. So UNC fans wouldn’t be able to say a word either.

But now imagine the alternative.

If North Carolina beats Saint Peter’s on Sunday — FYI: the Tar Heels are 8.5-point favorites in the Elite Eight game that’s scheduled for 5:05 p.m. ET on CBS — UNC will play its biggest and forever rival next Saturday in New Orleans. And if the Tar Heels were to win that matchup, man, they might have bragging rights forever because North Carolina fans would then be able to say, A) we beat Duke in Coach K’s final game at Cameron Indoor Stadium, and B) we beat Duke in the 2022 Final Four to end Coach K’s career.

Think about that.

It wouldn’t change the fact — or at least the widely accepted belief — that Mike Krzyzewski is the greatest men’s college basketball coach of all-time. But two of his final three losses coming to UNC sure would be something.

So that’s the answer to the question.

For Duke haters, North Carolina ending Coach K’s career in the national semifinals would be the most hilarious way for Coach K’s career to end. Assuming Saint Peter’s doesn’t upset the Tar Heels on Sunday, the nation will spend next Saturday watching first-year UNC coach Hubert Davis try to make it a reality.

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