Bob Waters left behind an iconic legacy in his 20 years as head football coach and athletics director at Western Carolina University before losing a heroic battle to Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS/amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) in 1989 at the age of 50. A native of Sylvania, Ga., who also gained fame in South Carolina and California, he became an adopted son of North Carolina.
Waters came to WCU in 1969 as head coach after an all-star football career at Presbyterian College, a five-year stint as quarterback and defensive back with the San Francisco 49ers and assistant coaching positions at Presbyterian and Stanford. He was the MVP of the 1960 Tangerine Bowl – now known as the Capital One Bowl – and was drafted by the 49ers where he made frequent starts as the “shotgun” (a newly created position in the era) quarterback and engineered wins over Baltimore, Detroit and Los Angeles in 1963.
At WCU, Waters led the Catamounts to 13 winning seasons and a school-record 116 victories (and two NCAA playoff appearances) while playing demanding non-conference schedules. Eight of his teams were nationally ranked, and he owned the eighth-best winning percentage among the NCAA’s I-AA coaches during his tenure. His 1983 squad became the first Southern Conference team to play in the NCAA I-AA title game. Prior to his arrival, WCU had posted only five winning seasons among the previous 20.
Fifty-four Catamounts who played under Waters named first-team All-Southern Conference selection. Thirteen were named to All-America teams, and a dozen went on to play pro football.
His pass-oriented offense perennially ranked in the nation’s top 10 and helped produce the country’s leading pass receiver in 1977, seven Southern Conference pass receiving titlists, the nation’s leading field goal kicker and punter and three Southern Conference Offensive Player of the Year recipients.
An outstanding athlete in every sport he touched while growing up in Pittsburgh, Eddie Biedenbach starred in basketball, baseball and football at Edgewood High School. He was signed to a basketball scholarship at North Carolina State University, where he initially played on the freshman team coached by former Wolfpack All-America Lou Pucillo. He played for three Hall of Fame coaches (Everett Case, Press Maravich and Norm Sloan) in his three varsity seasons and also played baseball for legendary Wolfpack coach Vic Sorrell.
Biedenbach quickly became a fan favorite at Reynolds Coliseum, known as a speedy defensive guard who had uncanny hand and foot quickness, great ballhandling skills and an innate knack for the game. Sportswriters bestowed upon him two nicknames – the “Pittsburgh Pickpocket” and the “Pittsburgh Pirate” – due to his propensity to steal the basketball.
His N.C. State varsity career included two years as the team’s leading scorer. He also was a two-time All-ACC selection and a two-time All-ACC Tournament selection. As a senior, he was named a preseason co-captain; at season’s end he was honored as of the Wolfpack’s MVP. And in 2003, when N.C. State voted on its all-time men’s basketball teams, Biedenbach was voted Player of the Decade for the 1960s.
Drafted by four different pro sports teams, Biedenbach was first selected by the St. Louis Hawks (drafted after his redshirt senior year, which he missed due to major back surgery). Three teams drafted Eddie following his basketball senior year – the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, the ABA’s New York Nets, and the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. He played briefly with the Lakers and the Phoenix Suns before returning to N.C. State to begin what became a long and rewarding coaching career.
As an assistant coach he was instrumental in recruiting the players that brought N.C. State national championships in 1974 and 1983, and he also served as an assistant to Hugh Durham when they led the Bulldogs to the 1983 Final Four.
As a head coach, Biedenbach took Davidson of the Southern Conference from last place to first in just three years. Later, in winning a school-record 256 games – most in Big South Conference history – in 17 seasons at UNC Asheville, he led the Bulldogs to a combined nine regular season and tournament championships. Four times he was named Big South Coach of the Year.
Biedenbach’s contributions to college basketball and campus life extend off the court as well. In 20 years as a head coach, his teams posted an impressive 95 percent graduation rate. And his endless energy and engaging personality have led to more than $5 million being raised for student scholarships and facility upgrades.
His years and many successes in myriad sports were recognized by his Pittsburgh roots in 1998 when he was inducted into Pennsylvania’s East Boros Sports Hall of Fame. He also was inducted into the Western North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.
Bill Guthridge’s final game as head basketball coach of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was in the 2000 national semifinals, capping a remarkable career in which he played or coached in 14 Final Fours, more than anyone in NCAA men’s basketball history.
The Parsons, Kansas, native also led UNC to the Final Four in 1998 in his first season as head coach, was part of 10 Final Fours as a Tar Heel assistant, and one each as a player and assistant coach at his alma mater, Kansas State.
Guthridge was Dean Smith’s assistant for 30 years. He came to UNC in 1967 after five years as Tex Winter’s assistant in Manhattan. In 33 seasons, the Tar Heels won two NCAA championships (1982 and 1993), played in 12 Final Fours, won 13 ACC Tournaments and played in the ACC championship game 22 times. The Tar Heels appeared in 29 NCAA Tournaments, winning 71 games, and won the 1971 NIT.
He was on the sidelines as a head or assistant coach for 960 victories, including 867 at North Carolina and 93 at Kansas State.
Guthridge went 80-28 in three seasons as the Tar Heels’ head coach. He won more games than any college coach after one and two seasons and tied the NCAA record for most victories after three years.
The National Association of Basketball Coaches, CBS, Sporting News and Atlanta Tipoff Club named him the National Coach of the Year in 1997-98. That year, UNC won 34 games, ACC Tournament and NCAA East Regional titles and he was also named ACC Coach of the Year.
“Bill did a marvelous job, but it was not a surprise to me or anyone who knows college basketball,” said Dean Smith. “He never did receive enough credit, although he didn’t ask for it, for all his years as Tex Winters’ assistant and my assistant. Bill’s basketball savvy, ability to remain composed and his genuine affection for his players are just some of the reasons for his success as a head coach.”
He coached NCAA Player of the Year Antawn Jamison and NBA Rookie of the Year Vince Carter among five National Players of the Year, six ACC Players of the Year, 28 first-team All-ACC players and 66 players selected in the NBA and/or ABA Drafts.
He was the Tar Heels’ shooting coach and was noted for his practice tutelage of the UNC big men. Some of his top post players included Rusty Clark, Bob McAdoo, Mitch Kupchak, Sam Perkins, Brad Daugherty, Joe Wolf, Scott Williams, J.R. Reid, Pete Chilcutt, Eric Montross, Rasheed Wallace, Jamison and Brendan Haywood. He also coached other UNC standouts such as Charles Scott, George Karl, Bobby Jones, Walter Davis, Phil Ford, Mike O’Koren, Al Wood, James Worthy, Michael Jordan, Matt Doherty, Kenny Smith, Jeff Lebo, George Lynch, Donald Williams, Jerry Stackhouse, Ed Cota and Jason Capel.
For many years Guthridge was part of a UNC coaching staff that included Smith, Roy Williams and Eddie Fogler. As head coach, he was assisted by Ford, Dave Hanners and Pat Sullivan.
“He’s been great to play for and has been a great leader,” Jamison said after leading UNC to the 1998 Final Four. Two years later, the Tar Heels were the eighth seed in the South Regional, but Guthridge led the team to an upset win over top-seeded and third-ranked Stanford to reach the Sweet 16. Two wins later, the Tar Heels were back in the Final Four.
Guthridge and Georgetown’s John Thompson were assistants under Dean Smith in 1976 when the United States won the Olympic gold medal in Montreal.
He and his wife, Leesie, have two sons, James and Stuart, and a daughter, Megan.
In 1993, he and Leesie created the William W. and Elise P. Guthridge Library Fund, which enabled the House Undergraduate Library to purchase much-needed humanities materials. They also helped fund the Undergraduate Library renovation campaign in 1998. A multi-media classroom on the library’s upper floor is named in recognition of their support.
In 1998, the Bill Guthridge Distinguished Professorship in Mathematics was established at Carolina. He majored in math at Kansas State.
Guthridge, who played scholastically for Harold Johnson, was inducted in the Kansas Basketball Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame in 2005. He is also the recipient of a Distinguished Service Medal from the UNC General Alumni Association.
In 2007, the Carolina Locker Room was dedicated by the basketball lettermen in his honor. He died in 2015.
Those who talk about his Page Pirate high school football teams talk about magic. They use words like mythical and historic, legend and mystique. They talk this way because his teams won. They won a lot – often in storybook ways. Opponents expected a field full of Goliaths and found Davids instead … smallish teams, underwhelming in shoulder pads and helmets, overwhelming in heart and discipline, in tactics and tenacity. The truth is, Marion Kirby preferred them this way. He knew what to do with little guys with big hearts.
Kirby’s career in athletics began behind his boyhood home in Hickory, in a yard outfitted with a hand-me-down bat, a scuffed baseball, and a heroic imagination. And for years thereafter it was a career bounded by a few miles – one you could follow on foot – first on nearby sandlots, then on the football fields of Hickory Junior High, and then Hickory High School, where he played for N.C. Sports Hall of Fame coach Frank Barger (and where Kirby was all-conference, all-state, and a participant in the 1960 East-West All-Star Game). College came next and hometown Lenoir-Rhyne was the lucky recipient of his talents. He was named Freshman of the Year, was a four-year letterman, and a member of a national title-winning team.
While at Lenoir-Rhyne, Kirby was a member of the Bears’ squad coached by the legendary Clarence Stasavitch, known to one and all as “Coach Stas.” To Kirby he was also known as next-door neighbor and, for the rest of his life, revered mentor.
The final moments of his freshman season were heroic imagination brought to life: Kirby kicked the winning field goal to cap off an 11-0-1 season and secure the NAIA national championship, putting the wraps on what history remembers as “the most outstanding campaign of any Lenoir-Rhyne athletic squad” ever. Ask him about the moment and he gives you this: “I was afraid if I didn’t make that field goal I might not have a ride on the plane home,” he says with a wink. “I was the guy who had missed the two extra points that put us behind in the first place.”
Having completed a sterling collegiate career, Kirby moved east in 1964, following Coach Stas to East Carolina University where he spent a year as a graduate assistant coach before setting off for Edenton and John A. Holmes High School. After only one year as assistant coach for the Edenton Aces, he spent six as head coach, leading the team to a record of 59-14-3, three conference championships, and two eastern 2-A championships during his seven-year tenure.
In 1973, Kirby departed for the plum assignment of head coach at Greensboro’s Walter Hines Page High School. There, aided ably by Frank Starling, Ken Page, and Jim Collins, assistants on one of the most stable and talented coaching staffs in North Carolina history, Kirby steadily built a dynasty in red jerseys and silver helmets. Early seasons of mixed results in the 1970s gave way to dominating, mythic seasons in the 1980s, when Kirby’s teams won the state’s 4-A title in 1980, ’83, ’84, and ’85, and were runners-up in 1982. During that time they strung together 46 consecutive games without a loss and 50 straight regular-season victories – both state records.
Kirby resigned from Page after 23 years on its sidelines with a record of 219-51-5, 13 conference championships, and four state championships. At the time, he was the second winningest high school football coach in North Carolina history.
But he wasn’t done. In 1996, Kirby was tapped to establish, from scratch, a football program at Greensboro College. In six short years, he built a competitive Division 3 program from the ground up, ending his career on the field with back-to-back seasons of 5-5.
In 2002, Kirby made his final professional move to Guilford College, where he served as athletics director for five years, overseeing the improvement and expansion of the athletic programs and facilities there. He retired in 2007.
Star athlete. Championship coach. Renowned author. Community leader.
At Edenton High Tolley earned 15 letters, made Honorable Mention All-America in football, set several state records, and was voted Most Outstanding Player on the 1960 State championship team.
He continued starring in track and football at East Carolina, setting nine school records in the latter sport.
As Elon’s head coach, Tolley won two national titles, compiled a 49-11-2 record and is believed to own the highest winning percentage (80.6) in North Carolina collegiate football lore. He’s also the only person in Elon’s 120-year history honored with coach emeritus status.
As an author, Tolley produced six books which have sold in every state and 25 countries.
He also is a four-term Mayor of Elon, the longest serving mayor in the town’s 117-year history. [more…]
The head field hockey coach at the University of North Carolina since 1981, Karen Shelton has led UNC to national prominence in the form of six NCAA Championships, six NCAA runner-up finishes, 16 Atlantic Coast Conference titles and 27 winning seasons. She carries a career record of 482-133-9 and ranks fifth among NCAA coaches in career wins.
A member of the National Field Hockey Coaches Association Hall of Fame and the USA Field Hockey Hall of Fame, Shelton was a three-time national player of the year at West Chester State and helped the U.S. team to a bronze medal at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. [more…]
Larry Lindsey retired from coaching in 1992, but his accomplishments haven’t dimmed with the passage of time.
In 28 seasons as a high school coach, his teams won eight state championships in three different classifications — 1A, 2A, and 3A. He won the first two at Youngsville and the last six at Wake Forest-Rolesville, where the gymnasium bears his name.
His resume also includes about 20 conference titles, 20 Coach-of-the-Year awards, a 609-156 overall record and induction into three Halls of Fame.
A standout player at Youngsville High and Pembroke State University, Lindsey often took small teams and turned them into giant-killing champions. Aggressive man-to-man defense and disruptive zone presses were staples of his program.
A lifelong North Carolinian, Tom Parham has been a teacher, coach & athletics administrator. His teams won three National Championships and he was selected National Tennis Coach of the Year four times. A Professor Emeritus at Elon, Parham was awarded the Elon Medallion in 2004, the University’s highest honor. Tom has taught the game of tennis to thousands of North Carolinians, and has been a supporter of junior and college tennis throughout his career. He has been recognized with three National Community Service awards, and was awarded the “Order of The Long Leaf Pine” by The State of North Carolina in 1979. [more…]
In 20 seasons at Appalachian, head coach Jerry Moore has compiled a 178-73 record, making him the winningest coach in Southern Conference history. In 27 years as a head coach, he is 205-121-2, making him one of only four active NCAA Division I FCS head coaches with 200 career victories and 23rd among all NCAA Division I coaches (FCS or FBS) in all-time victories. Moore led Appalachian to three-consecutive NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS — formerly Division I-AA) national titles from 2005-07. He also led ASU to its fourth-straight SoCon title with a perfect 8-0 conference record in 2008, marking just the fourth time in the 76-year history of the venerable league that a team has won four championships in a row. [more…]
Dave Odom, a native of Goldsboro, spent 43 years in coaching, 29 in North Carolina in the high school and college ranks. In 22 years as a head basketball coach at East Carolina, Wake Forest and South Carolina, Odom won 406 games. The 1965 graduate of Guilford College, where he played football and basketball, was the 1995 national coach of the year and three-time ACC coach of the year. His teams won 20 or more games 10 times, made nine trips to the NCAA Tournament and six to the NIT, with Wake Forest in 2000 and South Carolina in 2005 and 2006 winning NIT titles. His Wake Forest teams of 1995 and 1996 won ACC Tournament titles, the school’s first ACC championships since 1962. [more…]
After more than 1,000 career games and more than three decades of coaching, it stands to reason that North Carolina head coach Sylvia Hatchell would belong to some exclusive clubs. She was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Naismith Hall of Fame in 2013. She is one of only four head coaches in Division I history to reach the 800-win plateau. While Hatchell keeps impressive company in many categories, she is also part of an exclusive club that features just one member. When UNC defeated Louisiana Tech to win the 1994 NCAA Championship, Hatchell became the first and only coach to lead teams to national championships at the AIAW, NAIA and NCAA levels. Those titles – the first two coming at Francis Marion – are the crown jewels in one of the most decorated coaching careers in women’s basketball history. [more…]
Legendary Wake Forest football coach 1936-50, leading Deacons to 77-51-6 record. Coached Montreal of Canadian Football League, winning three division titles. Also coached at Elon, Yale and was New York Giants scout. [more…]
Longtime successful basketball coach at North Carolina A&T. His teams won 401 contests, along with five CIAA championships and the initial Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship. His teams placed third (1959 and1964) in the NAIA Tournament. [more…]
Frazier spent 40 years as baseball coach at Louisburg College where his teams won over 72% of their games (1,034-390). His teams made nine trips to the NJCAA World Series. He won 20 conference titles, 12 regional championships, and nine district titles. Twelve of his players went on to play in the major leagues. [more…]
Guilford College’s most decorated coach, Jack Jensen has directed four of the Quakers’ five national championship teams. His 2005 and 2002 golf teams won the NCAA Division III title and the 1989 team won the NAIA crown. The 1989 team included Lee Porter, who played six years on the PGA Tour. Jensen also won 386 games in 29 seasons as the Quakers’ head men’s basketball coach and took the 1972-73 squad to the NAIA national championship, Guilford’s first in any sport. The team featured future NBA players M.L. Carr, World B. Free and Greg Jackson. Jensen was the second person to coach two different sports to NAIA national titles. [more…]
A Buncombe County native, he is currently head basketball coach at the University of North Carolina. He coached the 2005 and 2009 Tar Heels basketball teams to the NCAA National Championship and is one of 13 coaches to win multiple NCAA titles. In seven years at UNC his teams have won 196 games. Coach Williams was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007. [more…]
The Johnston County native spent 5 decades coaching baseball, football and basketball at Campbell University and East Carolina University. Also served as scout for Cubs, Giants, and Padres. [more…]
Swimming coach at N.C. State for 21 years where his teams compiled a 182-25 dual meet record. His 1954 team won the National AAU Outdoor crown. Highly successful athletic director at N.C. State for nearly two decades. [more…]
An outstanding three-sport coach and athletic director during a 40-year career at Rockingham and Richmond County High Schools. Won four state titles in football and one in baseball. Elected to NCHSAA HOF in 1990. [more…]
Built one of the state’s all-time best coaching records at Greensboro Senior High School with seven state titles in football, three in basketball and 10 others in golf and swimming. Helped found N.C. Coaches Association. In National Federation HOF. [more…]
Longtime track coach and later chancellor at N.C. Central, producing Olympic and national champions. Coached 1976 U.S. Olympic team, elected president of U.S. Olympic Committee 1992. Member National track and Olympic HOFs. [more…]
Coached 25 national championship men’s and women’s track teams at St. Augustine’s College, including both titles in 2001. CIAA Coach of the Year 90 times. Assistant Olympic coach in 1996 and Head Coach of the men’s track and field team in 2004 Olympics. Member of the National Track and Field Hall of Fame. [more…]
Coached football, basketball and baseball at Edenton, Wilson and Wilmington New Hanover. Made his biggest mark with eight state basketball championsips. Two of his most famous players are Sonny Jurgensen and Roman Gabriel. [more…]
Longtime football and track coach who built a dynasty at Durham Hillside, winning dozens of State and Conference championships, over a six decade career. Coached collegiately at St. Augustine’s, St. Paul’s, N.C. Central and Southern U. [more…]
Longtime track and cross-country coach at Duke. His cross-country teams captured six ACC championships and finished second on 10 occasions. Active in U.S. Olympic program, serving as coach or manager at 1972, 1984 and 1988 Games. [more…]
Wake Forest golf coach for more than three decades. His teams captured 15 ACC championships, 10 of them in a row, along with three NCAA titles. He was ACC Coach-of-Year twice. More than 60 of his players earned All-America honors. [more…]
Coached football and golf at Duke for more than 40 years. Line coach for the 1938 Iron Dukes who were unscored on during the regular season and ended up in the Rose Bowl. His Duke golf teams won 18 Southern Conference and ACC titles. [more…]
Coached at Mt. Airy High School for nearly 30 years, participating in more than 1,300 contests in five sports. His football teams won five state championships, and he also won one state championship in basketball. [more…]
One of the most successful small college football coaches in history. His Lenoir-Rhyne (alma mater) and East Carolina teams won 170 games and lost only 64. Was small college National Coach of the Year in 1959 and 1964. [more…]
One of state’s leading high school football coaches for three decades, producing one championship team at Raleigh Broughton and three at Asheboro. He was Charlie Justice’s high school coach at Asheville. He never had a losing season. [more…]
Coached Duke football team to 110-36 record 1931-41 and 1946-50. Took Blue Devils to Rose Bowl twice, coached Alabama in Rose Bowl three times. Member College Football and Rose Bowl Halls of Fame. The Duke football stadium is named for him. [more…]
Outstanding college and high school coach. Led Elon to seven conference crowns and NAIA title game three times in four years. Also Duke head coach four years. His high school teams won two state championships and eight conference titles. [more…]
Chowan College football coach for 43 years. Won 182 games (third among junior college coaches) and was 7-time Conference Coach of the Year. 35 players were NJCAA All-Americans. [more…]
Won 177 football games at Sanford Central (Lee County) and won state 4A title, 4 co-state championships, 6 Eastern titles, 8 conference crowns. 1968 team was 13-0. School stadium named in his honor. Played at East Carolina University. Member ECU Sports HOF. [more…]
During a 44-year coaching career he won back-to-back 2-A state football titles at Sylva-Webster High School. He coached Tommy Love, the first black athlete to play in the Shrine Bowl. He had a career record of 301-121-6. [more…]
Football coaching career shortened by ill health, he had 107-31 record at Catawba College (1934-49). Teams won eight North State Conference titles and two Tangerine Bowls. Also coached basketball (nine league titles) and baseball (two titles) at Catawba. [more…]
Played football at Duke and coached at Children’s Home in Winston-Salem before moving into the college coaching ranks at Delaware and later at Duke. Had 93-51-9 record and five ACC titles in 15 seasons at Duke. Three times ACC coach-of-year. [more…]
N.C. Central’s winningest football coach with 112-57-10 record in 19 years, including four CIAA titles. Six times named CIAA Coach of the Year. From 1935 through 1944 coached Durham Hillside High to 82-3-5 record. [more…]
Football coach at N.C. State for 17 years where he won or shared five ACC championships and compiled 77-88-8 record. ACC Coach-of-Year three times. Had teams in two bowl games. President of American Football Coaches Association in 1970. [more…]
North Carolina’s winningest high school basketball coach of all time with 816-208 record in 42 seasons at Wilson and Elm City. Teams won 20 conference titles and seven state championships. Member NCHSAA HOF. [more…]
Coached High Point High School basketball, football for over 30 years. His basketball teams won more than 400 games and three state championships. Was multi-sport star at High Point College. Also coached in East-West All-Star games and Shrine Bowl. [more…]
Coached N.C. State basketball team to 30-1 record and NCAA championship in 1974, after a 27-0 1973 season. Won 266 games in 14 years as Wolfpack coach. National Coach of the Year in 1974. Played for Everett Case. Also coached at Presbyterian, Florida and The Citadel. [more…]
Coach Bones McKinney’s first recruit at Wake Forest, won 609 games in 31-year college coaching career at Guilford and High Point. The Sports Center at High Point is named for him and wife, Kitty. [more…]
Coached Durham High School basketball team to 7 state titles, 9 straight conference crowns and one national schoolboy championship, posting remarkable record of 464-37. Bones McKinney’s high school coach. [more…]
Coached N.C. State to NCAA basketball crown in 1983. Won 209 games and two ACC titles in 10 years as Wolfpack coach, compiled 14-7 record in eight NCAA appearances. ACC Coach of the Year 1989. N.C. State athletic director from 1986-89. [more…]
Elizabeth City State University’s first basketball coach at age 20. Won more than 500 games in 33 years, reaching national playoffs seven times. The ECSU physical education and athletic building was dedicated in his honor in 1980. Served as President of the N.C. Sports Hall of Fame 2005-06. [more…]
Spent 38 years as basketball coach and athletic director at Winston-Salem State. The second coach at a four-year institution to win 800 games. Inducted into National Basketball HOF in 1982. [more…]
One of premier NCAA women’s basketball coaches. During 34 year career at N.C. State her Wolfpack Women gave Yow 680 career wins, 5 ACC regular season titles, 4 ACC Tournament championships. Led 1998 team to NCAA Women’s Final Four. Coached United States women to Gold Medal in 1988 Olympics and 1986 Goodwill Games. Member Women’s Basketball HOF, and the Naismith Basketball HOF. Died January 24, 2009. [more…]
Served as basketball coach at Wake Forest for 23 years, 1934-1957, winning 288 games, the most by any WF coach. Also head baseball and assistant football coach. Had outstanding record as a Wake Forest athlete, earning 12 letters. [more…]
Coached Hanes Hosiery women’s basketball team to three National AAU championships in eight years. Three-sport star at High Point College and later coached its men’s basketball team for more than 20 years. [more…]