lina — where his best teams were anchored
by New York City boys and where he
Lennie Rosenbluth — who couldn’t
catch a ball, who taught himself to shoot,
who had an epiphany about the game one
summer that he can’t explain — still holds
the Carolina scoring average records for
career and for a single season. He has the
most points in a season, most in a regular
season ACC game, most in an ACC tournament game, most in the tournament for
a career. He has four of the Tar Heels’ six
highest-scoring game performances, the
most 40-point-plus games. He ranks fourth
in career points in three years — players
were required to serve a year on the freshman team in those days — behind three
latter-day players who played four years.
All of the Carolina scorers who are close to
him on the various lists played substantially
more games than he did. (He is not in the
top 25 in field goal percentage.)
“I played basketball. I didn’t write music
or write a book or anything. I just played
basketball. I loved playing, and I had a great
time, and I loved playing for coach. I really
liked him. Here, I’m a kid from New York,
I got a free college education, a school as
great as Carolina.”
“I worked for Merrill Lynch in Greens-
boro for 10 years,” Kearns said, “and every-
body knew me. The problem with that, of
course, is I was really more interested in
talking about stocks than I was winning a
national championship, but it was clearly a
door open for me. Wilt and I became really,
really good friends.” He retired at 49 but
keeps his hand in the investment business.
Joe Quigg went to dental school and
gave the Army three years, then practiced
in Fayetteville until 2000. He, too, still
helps out with others’ dental practices
there. He and the others always got a kick
out of McGuire’s stories about a college
teammate of his, a defensive wizard named
Rip Kaplinsky, whose name he invoked
whenever the Heels weren’t hustling. Later
they got to meet Kaplinsky, and Quigg
busted out laughing — he stood about
When Quigg’s daughter was enrolled
at Appalachian State, Quigg went to meet
ASU Coach Bobby Cremins, who had
starred for McGuire at South Carolina.
Cremins told him that Quigg and his team-
McGuire needed to fire up the Gamecocks.
Rosenbluth said, “We have five players
still, which is fantastic” — Kearns, Quigg,
Tony Radovich ’ 57 (’ 60 MEd) and Bob
Young ’ 57. “We’re more like brothers than
teammates, we have been for a long time.
We care for each other, we find out when
“We all graduated, we were all good
people, and we all contributed in life one
way or another. And we had an undefeated
season. Except for UCLA, who [went
unbeaten] four times, there’s only been
three other schools, and we’re one of them.
It’s a proud achievement.”
David E. Brown ’ 75 is senior associate editor
of the Review.
Watch the championship game at
1957champs. Rosenbluth goes back to
Kansas City at
See more recent player interviews at
McGuireMiracle. Bob Young made plays on
the ’ 57 team. These days, he believes in the
power of poetry. bit.ly/poetry_project
‘I played basketball.
I didn’t write music or write
a book or anything.
I just played basketball.
I loved playing, and I had
a great time, and I loved playing
for coach. I really liked him.
Here, I’m a kid from New York,
I got a free college education,
a school as great as Carolina.’
Rosenbluth at home in Chapel Hill