Dean Smith

An image of the book cover for 'Game Changers'
Courtesy of UNC Press

Dean Smith is known as a legendary basketball coach at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His teams won 879 games and two NCAA national championships.

But one of Smith's most crowning achievements isn't instilled in a trophy. In 1967, Smith recruited basketball player Charlie Scott, the first African-American scholarship athlete at UNC-CH. It was a seminal act for Smith and furthered his push for civil rights in the South.  
 

John Feinstein's new book 'The Legends Club' looks at the friendship between Triangle basketball legends Dean Smith, Mike Krzyzewski and Jim Valvano.
Christine Bauch Feinstein

Sports rivalries around the globe are fierce. But perhaps none is as intense as the basketball rivalries between North Carolina State University, Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The longtime coaches of each of those institutions have legendary status for many in the Tar Heel State.

An image of Bill Guthridge cutting down the net
UNC Atheltic Communications

 

Bill Guthridge, former UNC men’s basketball coach, died Tuesday, according to university officials. He was 77 years old.

The Kansas native spent more than three decades on the coaching staff in Chapel Hill. Guthridge was Dean Smith's trusted assistant coach for 30 years before serving as UNC's head coach after Smith's retirement in 1997.

Dean Smith
UNC-Chapel Hill

Thousands of people celebrated the life of legendary basketball coach Dean Smith yesterday. His family, former players and longtime friends paid tribute to the man, coach and leader at a memorial service in Chapel Hill. Smith passed away earlier this month following a long neurological illness. He was 83.

Inside a building that bears his name and beneath dozens of banners he helped to raise, Dean Smith was memorialized on Sunday.

Political Junkie Ken Rudin

Feb 13, 2015

The governor and the legislature are at odds over changes at the Department of Transportation concerning layoffs and the gas tax. 

Plus, President Obama chose North Carolina native Loretta Lynch to fill the attorney general position, but her confirmation hearings have been delayed. 

Host Frank Stasio talks with political junkie Ken Rudin about these stories and other political news around the state.

When I was a callow basketball reporter, I wrote critically of a stall strategy called the four corners that North Carolina Tar Heels coach Dean Smith would have his team use if they were ahead late in a game. He asked me why I didn't like the ploy, and I told him that it was my experience (my experience: I'm like 25 years old) that "sitting on a lead" — that's the expression — changes the emotion, the passion, and while it may be rational, it's dangerous psychologically.

Former Foe Remembers Coach Dean Smith

Feb 9, 2015

Legendary college basketball coach Dean Smith died on Saturday at the age of 83. He coached the University of North Carolina Tar Heels for 36 years and his teams won two national championships.

He’s being remembered by former players, including Michael Jordan, as a father figure. Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd speaks with one of Smith’s former rivals, retired Georgia Tech head coach Bobby Cremins, who says Smith “made the game of basketball better.”

UNC Athletic Communications

    

North Carolina coaching legend Dean Smith died this weekend. As a coach for the Tar Heels men's basketball team, he won two national championships, his trademark "Four Corners" offense frustrated opponents, and his 879 wins were the most in Division I basketball history when he retired.

But his friends, his family and his players often point to what he did off the court as a sign of who Dean Smith was.

Dean Smith passed away Saturday night in Chapel Hill. By Sunday afternoon a memorial had been created outside of the Dean E. Smith Center.
Jeff Tiberii

College basketball fans, alumni and students are remembering the iconic Dean Smith as an innovative coach and a man of integrity. People brought flowers, balloons and wrote messages in chalk outside the building that bares his name in Chapel Hill. Jeff Tiberii spoke with a few of those Carolina followers who paid tribute on Sunday.  

Leon Keys, Ginny Moses and Tom Gahagan were among the dozens of people paid tribute to Dean Smith on campus yesterday. Smith died Saturday night. He was 83.

Dean Smith
UNC-Chapel Hill

Dean Smith, the legendary men's college basketball coach at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has passed away. He was 83 years old.

"Coach Smith passed away peacefully the evening of February 7 at his home in Chapel Hill, and surrounded by his wife and five children," his family said in a statement. "We are grateful for all the thoughts and prayers, and appreciate the continued respect for our privacy as arrangements are made available to the public."

Remembering Dean Smith

Feb 8, 2015
15 Mar 1997: Coach Dean Smith of the North Carolina Tarheels gives instructions to his players during a playoff game against the Colorado Buffaloes at the Lawrence Joel Coliseum in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The Tarheels won the game 73 - 56 giving
Bo Gordy-Stith (PBoBS) / Flickr/Creative Commons

Induction into a sports Hall of Fame is a reflective moment for any athlete or coach. Nine Tar Heel players or coaches are in the Basketball Hall of Fame, and eight of them either had some connection to Dean Smith or were Dean Smith. And none missed the opportunity to thank him during their acceptance speeches:

Michael Jordan: “Coach Smith… what else can I say about him? He’s legendary in the game of coaching.”