Topics: Dean Smith

Dean Smith is the former men’s head basketball coach at UNC. He took over the program in 1960 and led the program until his retirement in 1997. Over his tenure as coach, his teams had a record of 879-254. He retired with more victories than any other coach in Division I men’s basketball history. His record was broken by Bob Knight in 2007 and Mike Krzyzewski in 2011.

Smith is considered one of the greatest coaches of all time. He led the Tar Heels to two championships in 1982 and 1993. He coached legendary players such as Charlie Scott, Michael Jordan, James Worthy, Kenny Smith and Eric Montross. In 2013, Smith was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. 

The Dean E. Smith Student Activities Center has been the home of North Carolina men’s basketball since Jan. 18, 1986, when the arena’s first game featured a top-five matchup between No. 1 UNC and No. 3 Duke, a 95-92 UNC win.

The Smith Center was entirely funded by private gifts, yet no gift exceeded $1,000,000. It also includes the Koury Natatourium, the home of the UNC swimming and diving team. It cost $33.8 million originally and was renovated in 2001 for $150,000. The Smith Center seats 21,750.

At 313,255 sq. ft, the Smith Center currently stands as the fifth-largest collegiate basketball arena in the United States. Before the Smith Center opened, UNC men’s basketball played home games in Charmichael stadium, and before Charmichael opened, Woolen Gymnasium was the home of basketball.

Fans miss Smith Center’s musical days

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UNC alumnus and basketball fan Dalton Mayo loved living on the 10th floor of Hinton James Residence Hall in the early 1990s.


Smith Center renovations postponed

After months of discussions surrounding renovations to the Smith Center, UNC fans’ dream for a new-or-improved arena have been put on hold.


Medal of Freedom given to Dean Smith

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It would be easy to quantify former North Carolina basketball coach Dean Smith’s accomplishments in accolades and statistics — 879 wins, two national championships, 13 ACC titles.


Dean Smith to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

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Dean Smith will be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, President Barack Obama announced Thursday.


The man behind the muscles

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In the office of North Carolina men’s basketball trainer Jonas Sahratian, a Tyler Hansbrough jersey hangs prominently on the wall, with a signature and short letter inked on it by the 2008 Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year.


McCrory proposes tuition increases for out-of-staters

Georgia native Audrey Horne is afraid that she might never again walk into the dusty geology building or cheer among a sea of fervid Carolina blue fans at the Smith Center after this year.


Faculty ready to propose series of athletic reforms

More than 100 faculty want the University to know the last thing on their minds is NCAA rules and eligibility. Instead, they say its focus should be on giving student athletes what they were promised — a UNC education.


Renovations may come to Smith Center

Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham has expressed interest in polishing UNC’s biggest monument to the now 82-year-old former basketball coach Dean Smith.


Petition honors Dean Smith’s career

When he retired, legendary coach Dean Smith was the winningest coach in college basketball history.


Athletic department releases 3-year plan

Throughout his career, legendary North Carolina basketball coach Dean Smith always had six words for his players. Now, decades later, Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham has six similar words for his department — six words that summarize its new strategic plan, which was released today.


Fever ?nds new home in Smith Center

At home men’s basketball games, the spirit of Carolina Fever is no longer contained in one seating section.


Kenan-Flagler builds house for UNC family

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Yoe Moo spent about 20 years in refugee camps in Thailand, but found a new home in the United States four years ago.


Dean Smith's influence off the court

Three legends of North Carolina basketball are all in accord when it comes to one thing — they wouldn’t be where they are today without Dean Smith. The Hall of Fame basketball coach has “progressive neurocognitive disorder” according to a letter from his family that was released Saturday.


Family writes letter concerning Dean Smith's health

On Oct. 9, 1997, Dean Smith surprised everyone when he retired as head coach of the North Carolina basketball team. On Saturday, a letter from Smith’s family concerning his health came as no surprise. The legendary coach who led UNC to two national championships and put the University on the map as a basketball school has memory loss at age 79.


Dean Smith death just a rumor

Associate Athletic Director Steve Kirschner has confirmed that a rumor that former UNC head basketball coach Dean Smith had died was not true. While Smith has been suffering from severe memory loss, the legendary basketball icon is still alive despite what Kirschner called “vicious rumors” being spread through e-mails and twitter today.


A legend deserved more from me

I owe Dean Smith an apology.


1982 recap: Smith leads UNC to win

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Michael Jordan’s shot with 17 seconds remaining. James Worthy’s dunk over Patrick Ewing. Dean Smith’s first ring.

The 1982 national championship is the most iconic title in UNC basketball history. But the banner was also accompanied by both a No. 1 national ranking and a 32-2 record — the best record of any North Carolina team since 1957.


1982: Smith wins first national title

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The following story originally ran in the March 30, 1982 edition of The Daily Tar Heel.

NEW ORLEANS — And on the seventh try, Dean created national champions.

UNC coach Dean Smith, after six previous trips to the final four, finally came away with the big one — the NCAA collegiate basketball title — as the North Carolina Tar Heels beat the Georgetown Hoyas 63-62.


UNC alumni game draws crowd

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It was a night to remember — literally.

Friday evening at the Smith Center, North Carolina’s professional basketball alumni came home to pay homage to both themselves and the history they are all a part of.

“I mean, anyone who played here, was a manager here, we all went through the same things,” former power forward and national player of the year in 1998 Antawn Jamison said.

“You put on that jersey, you represent this University and this community the same way. And for me to be part of, is something that I’ll cherish for the rest of my life.”


Students Get Rare Chat With Smith

Offering humorous anecdotes and fielding questions about his life on and off the court, the winningest college basketball coach of all time made a rare speaking appearance Tuesday afternoon.