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Dean Smith crafted championship culture

Long before "branding" became essential, you could spot North Carolina's basketball team a thousand miles away. The Tar Heels of Dean Smith were a law of nature. They weren't consistent. They were permanent.

Dean Smith, Jerry Tarkanian, and the murkiness of right and wrong in college basketball

In an era where basketball coaches are now reminded early and often that they aren't employed to be spokespeople for their universities on social issues, it seems more and more likely that we'll never see a Dean Smith again. And that has nothing to do with his 879 wins, 11 Final Four appearances, 30 ACC championships, two national titles, or one gold medal.

William and Mary coaches Tony Shaver, Jonathan Holmes shared special bond with Dean Smith

The timing of the memorial presented William and Mary head coach Tony Shaver, one of Smith's disciples, and Tribe assistant coach Jonathan Holmes a dilemma before news of the memorial had been finalized and a private service on Thursday welcoming family and former UNC players had been announced.

Short takes on Dean Smith

For a period in the 1990s, Dean Smith pledged to eat healthy foods. He had one weakness, though, and Chris Leevy Johnson, a team manager from 1992-96, was often asked to go by Merritt’s Store and Grill in Chapel Hill to deliver it. Smith would hand over the keys to his dealer-issued 740 series BMW to Johnson, who was just a sophomore at the time

ESPN takes Dick Vitale off UNC-Duke basketball this week

Since joining ESPN in 1979, Dick Vitale has called every single Duke-North Carolina game the network has aired. More than any other college game or rivalry, Vitale is known for Duke-North Carolina. But not this week. The streak is coming to an end. Vitale has not been assigned Wednesday's Duke-North Carolina game.

1957 title team member Danny Lotz recognized for athletics, faith, service to state

A fire burns deep within Danny Lotz. Call it the flame of second chances – whether grabbing rebounds on UNC’s 1957 national championship basketball team, or helping wayward souls rebound to a life of Christian faith. At a surprise ceremony Wednesday, Lotz was conferred with The Order of The Long Leaf Pine. It recognizes outstanding North Carolinians who have a proven record of lifetime service to the state.

Dean Smith proved it's really, really hard to win the NCAA tournament

So what does this prove about Dean Smith, the coach? Nothing. All it proves is that winning the NCAA tournament is really, really hard. For his first few seasons, Smith’s teams couldn’t qualify for the tournament unless they won the ACC tournament. He still made it four times. Then, the tournament expanded, first to 32, then to 48 and finally to 64 in 1985. But even winning four or five or, now, six games in a row is a lofty feat that takes just as much luck as it does skill.

One Maryland fan’s letter from Dean Smith

In the days after his death at 83, there were dozens of stories about Dean Smith’s famous letters. Here’s another one, courtesy of a reader named Sidney. “I attended the University of Maryland as an undergrad, and despite the de rigueur animosity between the UM and UNC, I was always a Dean Smith fan,” Smith e-mailed. “A few months after he retired I sent him a letter congratulating him on his incredible coaching career, and Coach Smith actually took the time to write me back!"

Five college players who may someday win the NBA dunk contest

1. J.P. Tokoto, North Carolina: As a high school senior, Tokoto earned a reputation as a great dunker by sticking an in-game 360 slam and winning several all-star-game dunk competitions. The versatile wing has validated that hype since arriving at North Carolina, producing highlights in transition, via lobs and just by fearlessly attacking the rim.

Video: Sasha Seymore Chases Dreams

For UNC basketball player Sasha Seymore, wearing the uniform is only part of his dream as Tar Heel. ESPNU Campus Connection Correspondent Kylie McCoy has his story.

Dean Smith's obituary, written by his family

With Dean, the man you saw on the basketball sidelines was the same man you met in the fellowship hall or on the golf course: attentive, devout, funny and sincerely interested in the person in front of him. He was a teacher, father, leader, friend. Each of these things spoke to part of who he was, but the sum was always greater.

Dean Smith was a man of letters. Literally.

In 1988, former North Carolina guard Charlie Scott — the Tar Heels’ first black scholarship basketball player — and wife Trudy welcomed daughter Simone into the world. Smith sent her a letter.

Reeling Tar Heels Usher In Duke Week Licking Wounds

One of the most storied and intense rivalries in all of sports will be renewed Wednesday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium. We’re just two days away from the 239th installment of Carolina-Duke and this season, the Tar Heels and Blue Devils are trending in different directions. The Tar Heels are searching for answers. And that’s bad timing with a pretty big game looming large midweek.

SMU routs UConn, pays tribute to Larry Brown's mentor, Dean Smith

Still mourning his former coach and mentor, SMU coach Larry Brown received a lift from his team Saturday night: a 73-55 rout of defending national champion Connecticut. Saturday against UConn, the first home game since Smith's death, SMU's players wore black warmup shirts with "Family" printed in Carolina Blue letters. The gesture clearly moved their 74-year-old coach.

If any college coach was an educator, it was Dean Smith

Dean Smith was an educator if there ever was one. His duty was, first and foremost, to win basketball games, but his actions show he was just as concerned with what was happening in the world around him when, as ESPN's Richard Lapchick put it, most coaches were "conservative or not political at all."

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Schedule at a Glance
Last Game:
North Carolina: 74
Villanova: 77
Mon, Apr 4 Box Score

Upcoming Games:
UNC vs. Hawaii
Fri, Nov 18 TBD

UNC @ Indiana
Wed, Nov 30 TBD

UNC vs. Kentucky
Sat, Dec 17 TBD

Full Basketball Schedule

Radio Affiliates

ACC Basketball Standings
TeamACCOverall
(3) North Carolina14-433-7
(4) Virginia13-529-8
(10) Miami13-527-8
(16) Louisville12-623-8
Notre Dame11-724-11
(19) Duke11-725-11
Virginia Tech10-820-15
Clemson10-817-14
Pittsburgh9-921-12
Syracuse9-923-14
Georgia Tech8-1021-15
Florida State8-1020-14
NC State5-1316-17
Wake Forest2-1611-20
Boston College0-187-25


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