NCAA Tournament

Duke hospital celebrates March Madness by delivering babies with Blue Devils onesies

Move over Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett. These are the real diaper dandies.

North Carolina is a basketball-crazed state and nowhere is it more true than in the Research Triangle, where the Duke Blue Devils, North Carolina Tar Heels and North Carolina State compete for Atlantic Coast Conference titles on an annual basis.

As they so often are, Duke and North Carolina are into the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament and Duke Regional Hospital is celebrating by indoctrinating its new babies into Blue Devil fandom with special-edition onesies.

The Duke Birthing Center, Duke Hospital and WakeMed in Durham, North Carolina, are giving families with newborn babies celebratory onesies during the NCAA Tourney. The onesies feature the Blue Devils’ logo on the front and a basketball on the back to embrace the Madness.

“We’ve had great feedback,” Duke OB-GYN chair Matthew Barber told WTVD in Durham, “and it makes people smile, which is our goal.”

Duke’s OB-GYN department delivers about 6,000 babies a year at its Duke hospitals and WakeMed North Hospital in Raleigh, North Carolina. A relatively small percentage will be born during the Blue Devils’ run through the Tournament, but those will spend some of their first days on earth decked out in Duke blue.

“The onesies will continue to be given to newborns throughout the NCAA basketball tournament as a way to generate team spirit for Duke Obstetrics and Gynecology and, of course, Duke basketball,” Duke University Health System’s Samiha Khanna told WTVD.

The No. 1-seed Blue Devils will return to action Friday at the Sweet 16 in Washington against the No. 4-seed Virginia Tech Hokies. Duke, the No. 1 overall seed, is the favorite to win the national title after surviving a scare from the No. 8-seed UCF Knights for a 77-76 win Sunday in Columbia, South Carolina.

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