Down in front! Fire code puts dent in Cameron Crazies

Updated: November 7, 2006, 3:53 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Duke's opponents may have finally found something that will make the "Cameron Crazies" sit down -- the Durham fire code.

Cameron Crazies
Streeter Lecka/Getty ImagesYou in front: Make way for the fire marshal.

Duke's student fan section, which has been allowed to stand on floor space behind press row for decades, is being forced to retreat to the bleachers in Cameron Indoor Stadium in the interests of fire safety.

Durham's fire-code regulations, according to the school, forbid the Crazies -- or anyone else -- from occupying the floor space.

Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski was perplexed by the new mandate.

"Where were [the fire marshals] for the last 50 years?" he told the Durham Herald Sun. "It's like, 'Did we do something wrong? And if that is the case, then how might we be able to solve it without hurting the students?' They're on the team, too. They should be as close to the court as possible."

The move will only push fans a few feet back from the court, but the students who cram into the standing-room strip on the floor each game will now have to find another place to cheer.

The fire regulations have been in place for years, but Duke has not followed them until this year, according to Durham fire marshal Eddie Reid.

Reid told the Herald Sun that the fire department "just went over the occupancy plan with Duke" and he "had no idea" why the school would suddenly choose to enforce the regulations.