Friedlander: Boozer twins to UNC? It wouldn't be the first 'house divided' situation in the Triangle
The recruitment of basketball playing twins Cameron and Cayden Boozer has only just begun. But thanks to North Carolina’s Hubert Davis, the heat has been turned up to a boiling point in the battle for the highly rated 2025 prospects.
The Boozers are the sons of Carlos Boozer, the former Duke star who helped the Blue Devils win the national championship in 2001.
Cameron, a 6-9 forward, is the No. 1 prospect in his class. Cayden, a 6-3 point guard, is also ranked among the top 25 nationally. Though they haven’t actually said they plan to go to college as a package deal, there’s a good chance that will happen.
And of course, Jon Scheyer at Duke is hoping that their status as Blue Devils legacies will help in his efforts to land the talented duo.
While you’d have to believe that Scheyer has the inside track on the Boozers because of their family ties, history suggests that it’s not exactly a slam dunk and that Davis’ offer is more than just a symbolic gesture.
As proof, we offer up these memorable “house divided” examples of family members playing on different sides of the Triangle’s intense rivalries:
Jeff and Jason Capel
The Capel brothers give new meaning to the term sibling rivalry. Although they’re together now on the same staff at Pittsburgh, where Jeff is the head coach and younger brother Jason is his assistant, their playing days were spent on opposite sides of arguably the most intense rivalry in sports.
Jeff spent his 4 college seasons as a point guard at Duke, where he started every game as a freshman on a team that advanced all the way to the 1994 national championship game. His career from that point on was a roller coaster. But he did finish with 1,601 points, 433 assists and 220 3-pointers while producing 1 of the most memorable shots in Blue Devils history with a dramatic halfcourt buzzer beater to force a 2nd overtime against UNC in 1995.
Three years later, Jason decided to play for the Tar Heels and, like his brother, started right away as a freshman. A small forward who at 6-8, is 3 inches taller than Jeff, he also put up respectable career stats, scoring 1,447 points and 807 rebounds while leading UNC in scoring as a senior. Like his brother, he also played on a Final Four team.
Torin and Myles Dorn
Torin Dorn Sr. was a running back at UNC who switched to defense as a senior and went on to enjoy a 7-year NFL career with the Los Angeles Raiders and St. Louis Rams.
His youngest son, Myles, followed in his footsteps by playing football and becoming a member of the Tar Heels. A hard-hitting safety, he recorded 240 tackles and 6 interceptions between 2016-19 before moving on to the NFL as an undrafted free agent. He was recently signed to the practice squad of the Carolina Panthers.
Torin’s oldest son and namesake chose a completely different path. With dad’s blessing.
“I didn’t want to push any particular school on (my sons),” he said. “My whole thing was: Wherever you choose to go to school, make sure that you would go to that school if you weren’t playing ball, that you want to be there and feel comfortable being there.”
Not only did Torin Jr. eschew football to concentrate on basketball, but after starting his college career at Charlotte – where he was the Conference-USA Freshman of the Year – he chose to attend his father and younger brother’s rival NC State. In 3 seasons for the Wolfpack from 2016-19, he recorded 1,267 points, 616 rebounds and 118 assists. He is currently back at State as a graduate manager.
Josh and Gary Downs
The father-son dynamic of the Downs’ relationship is similar to that of the Boozer twins and their dad.
Gary was a star running back who rushed for 1,642 yards and 23 touchdowns at NC State from 1990-93. He was selected in the 3rd round of the NFL Draft and played in 69 games over 6 professional seasons before going into coaching. He is the running backs coach at East Tennessee State.
Despite his ties to the Wolfpack, Downs’ son Josh decided to play his college ball in Carolina blue. It turned out to be a good decision. Despite being undersized at 5-9, 171 pounds, he twice earned All-American honors while amassing 202 career catches for 2,483 yards and 22 touchdowns.
The younger Downs teamed with quarterback Sam Howell to set a UNC school record with 101 catches for 1,335 yards as a sophomore in 2022. He followed that up by becoming Drake Maye’s favorite target while catching 94 passes for 1,034 yards.
For all their differences, they have at least 1 thing in common besides their name and football talent. They’re both 3rd-round NFL Draft picks.
Greg and Mike Paulus
Greg Paulus was a polarizing figure during his basketball career at Duke. He was the Blue Devil everybody loved to hate because of his scrappy style and floor-slapping gung ho personality. While his lasting claim to fame might be getting posterized on a dunk by UNC’s Danny Green, he was actually one of the better point guards in the ACC from 2005-09.
He scored 1,193 points and handed out 468 assists, many of which went to 2-time ACC Player of the Year JJ Redick. After finishing his career with the Blue Devils, he played a season of football at Syracuse and is currently the head basketball coach at Niagara.
Younger brother Mike was also a 2-sport star. Not only did he differ from Greg by concentrating on football, but as the No. 1 quarterback prospect in New York in 2007 he went the other way with his college choice, too, by accepting a scholarship from UNC.
He stayed 2 seasons in Chapel Hill, seeing action in only 4 games before transferring to William & Mary. Ironically, he suffered a season-ending injury as a member of the Tribe in 2011 during a game against the Tar Heels at Kenan Stadium.
Shavlik Randolph and Ronnie Shavlik
The family connection with this duo skipped a generation.
Ronnie Shavlik was a 2-time All-American basketball player for legendary coach Everett Case at NC State in the early days of the ACC. He was the 1956 conference Player of the Year, whose honored jersey hangs from the rafters of PNC Arena. His 1,598 career rebounds are still a school record and the 2nd most in ACC history behind only Tim Duncan.
His grandson Shavlik Randolph clearly inherited his basketball genes, as well as his height. The 6-10 forward was a McDonald’s All-American who broke Pete Maravich’s single-game scoring record at Raleigh’s Broughton High School with a 56-point effort as a senior.
Rather than follow in his grandfather’s footsteps, he opted to play at Duke, where after a promising start his career was marred by a series of injuries. He did, however, put together a lengthy professional career with several NBA teams and overseas.