Frank McGuire

Frank McGuire

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Frank McGuire

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Frank Joseph McGuire (November 8, 1914 – November 11, 1994) was an American athletic coach who gained his greatest renown in collegiate basketball.

Born in New York City as the youngest of thirteen children in an Irish-American family, to New York police officer, Robert McGuire and his wife, the former Anne Lynch (his father dying when Frank was only two years old), McGuire graduated from St. John's University in 1936. He served in the United States Navy during World War II, interrupting his work as a teacher and coach at his high school. Prior to 1947 he also played pro basketball briefly in the American Basketball League; he then became the head basketball and baseball coach at his alma mater.

After bringing the baseball team to the College World Series in 1949 and the basketball team to the Final Four in 1952 – becoming one of only three coaches to achieve both accomplishments – he left St. John's to become basketball coach at the University of North Carolina. He guided North Carolina to the 1957 NCAA title, winning the championship game 54-53 in triple overtime against the Wilt Chamberlain-led Kansas team, and finishing the season with a perfect 32-0 record.

In 1961, the lieu of major NCAA violations (along with the rumors of point shaving by some UNC players) created a rift between McGuire and Chancellor William Aycock leading McGuire to resign after the season. The man who replaced him was Dean Smith, his assistant coach whom he recommended for the...
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