Duke-UVA a reunion for STAB basketball grads

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- Javin DeLaurier says he has gotten used to being the 'bad guy' in his old home town.

"You know, I get a lot of boos sometimes," he admitted. "Sometimes students will try to mess with me a little bit. But it's all good."

A 6-10 forward, DeLaurier is in his third season on the men's basketball team at No. 2 Duke, who visits No. 3 Virginia on Saturday night. That game will be a homecoming for DeLaurier, who played his high school basketball at St. Anne's-Belfield -- where he was teammates with UVA guard Jayden Nixon.

"He's one of my good friends from high school. We played on the same team for three years," DeLaurier said. "So we talk kind of frequently."

"Probably one of the best experiences I'll ever have," said Nixon, "playing with somebody that dominant on the court, and being such a great leader, teammate and friend off the court."

Nixon's now in his first year as a walk-on, with UVA. So just like three weeks ago in Durham, he and DeLaurier will again be in opposing uniforms on Saturday.

Brian Kent coached those STAB teams with DeLaurier and Nixon.
He watched that first meeting between the 'Hoos and Blue Devils -- a 72-70 Duke win -- from home. He plans to do the same on Saturday night.

"You're starstruck almost. You're watching TV and you're just like, wow," Kent said. "To be able to coach those guys and see them at this next level. And whether it's being a good teammate or being on the floor playing hard, it's just fun to watch."

DeLaurier has played in 66 games in his three seasons at Duke, including all 22 this year. His 3.9 points and 13.7 minutes per game are both career highs, and he's shooting a career-best 82.9 percent from the floor.

"I remember when we first got the call, this is Duke basketball. One of their assistant coaches," Kent recalled. "And just from there the excitement started."

"I remember seeing Javin as a junior and I was a sophomore, and just seeing all the potential, and he's finally coming into that," said Nixon. "It's really great to see first-hand."

Nixon joined the UVA program after a post-grad season last year at Choate Rosemary Hall in Connecticut. He has scored six total points and grabbed seven rebounds in 10 game appearances this season.

Both Nixon and DeLaurier say they still keep in touch -- though not so much recently.

"We always check up on SnapChat, text. See how he's doing, stuff like that," Nixon said. "We play a few video games here and there."

DeLaurier just chuckled when asked if he planned to reach out to Nixon before Saturday's game.

"Uh, no," he said. "I'll text him after."