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DIXIE'S YANKEE HERO
Gerald Holland
December 09, 1957
Coach Frank McGuire, formerly of Greenwich Village, has been enthusiastically adopted as North Carolina's very own, along with a team he imported from Greater New York
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December 09, 1957

Dixie's Yankee Hero

Coach Frank McGuire, formerly of Greenwich Village, has been enthusiastically adopted as North Carolina's very own, along with a team he imported from Greater New York

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Rosenthal slapped the table. "You see what I mean?" he said to McGuire. "You may be hot stuff in Chapel Hill, but you don't amount to very much around here."

After lunch, McGuire stopped at the Immaculata grade school (attended by his daughter, Carol Ann) and prowled the corridors until he spotted Sister Mary Innocent, coach of the basketball team, teaching a class. She came out to greet him.

"How's the team look, Sister?" asked McGuire.

Sister Mary Innocent pursed her lips and replied with a professional air: "Hard to tell, coach. But I think we'll do all right. What we need most is a new basketball."

"I'll take care of it," said McGuire. "Have any of my boys been over to give you a hand?"

"Not yet, coach," said Sister Mary Innocent.

"I'll speak to them," said McGuire. "One or two of them will be over this week."

That evening, McGuire sat at the head table in the auditorium of Temple Emanuel and ate a pot roast dinner. He was reaching for seconds when he was introduced as the man who didn't need an introduction in North Carolina "any more than the President of the United States."

McGuire got up and stayed up for an hour and a half. He replayed the Kansas game for his rapt audience, detailing the final six seconds of the third overtime period in which Joe Quigg sank his two foul shots to put Carolina ahead 54-53 and Tommy Kearns saw two seconds left on the clock and threw the ball to the rafters, figuring it would take two seconds to go up and come back down.

He deprecated the role of the coach on the bench. "I was telling a meeting of 1,800 high school coaches out at Ohio State University last week," he said, "that I sometimes think the best thing I could do on the day of a game is stay home. That way I wouldn't communicate some of my own fears and worries to the players. When I was a player, I didn't know what fear was, but now I do. The thing I try to remember is to leave the players alone as much as possible during a game."

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