Lennie Rosenbluth Q&A (w/audio)

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- The 1957 national championship Tar Heel team was honored during halftime of Saturday's game at the Smith Center. Lennie Rosenbluth, the star on that squad and whose jersey number is retired at UNC, spoke to reporters before the game. Read and listen to what he had to say ...

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Part I (8:58)
Part II (7:38)

What's it like to walk in this building and see your jersey up there 50 years later?

"It's a great honor to even be talked about in the same breath as Worthy, Jamison and the other [retired] players hanging up there. The nice thing about it is that as long as there's Carolina basketball, my grandchildren and my son will see my name up there and realize we're part of the Carolina family and we were the team that really got this started with Coach McGuire."

Looking back, where do you see the '57 team's place in Carolina history?

"I like to say that Coach McGuire and the players, we are the ones that started Carolina back to dominance in basketball. I always tell this story ... When I came down here, you had to play freshman basketball, you couldn't play varsity, so we came out of the locker room and up the steps to Woollen Gym for our first freshmen gym and we couldn't get into the gym - it was locked. And when we finally got someone to open the gym, there were like 15 people in the gym. You couldn't give a ticket away in 1953. ... By the end of my freshman year, the stands were packed - 5,000 strong. ... By the time 1957 came around, you couldn't get a ticket to the game. So I like to feel that the 1957 team really started what Carolina basketball is today. ..."

Would you like to see the school do something more for Coach McGuire?

"I would hope so. They do have a new banner up to commemorate the team and they have Coach McGuire's name underneath, which is great to see. I know when left the University it wasn't under the best circumstances, but when he came down here Carolina was ranked maybe in the 200s in basketball. He brought the players down from New York City ..."

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