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The Duke Blue Devils are the intercollegiate athletic teams that represent Duke University, located in Durham, North Carolina. Duke's athletics department features 27 varsity teams that all compete at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I level. The name comes from the French "les Diables Bleus" or "the Blue Devils," which was the nickname given during World War I to the Chasseurs Alpins, the French Alpine light infantry battalion. Duke joined the Southern Conference in 1929, and left in 1953 to become a founder of the Atlantic Coast Conference.