UNC History: Blast From The Past – The Top 20 UNC Basketball Teams of All-Time (#2 and #1)


UNC 2009 – What can I say about this team. They were loaded with talent, which consisted of Tyler “Psycho T” Hansbrough (2008 Consensus National Player of the Year, 2008 ACC Player of the Year, and four year First team All-ACC), Tywon Lawson (2009 ACC Player of the Year and First team All-ACC), Wayne Ellington (Most Outstanding Player of the 2009 Final Four and 2009 Honorable Mention), Danny Green (2009 First team All-Defensive team and 2009 Third team All-ACC), Tyler Zeller (2012 ACC Player of the Year), Marcus Ginyard (who missed most of the season), Bobby Frasor, and Ed Davis. This season was full of broken records. On December 18th, 2008 when North Carolina played Evansville, Psycho T broke Phil Ford‘s UNC Career Scoring Record of 2,290 points. Hansbrough finished his collegiate career with 2,872 points. On February 28th, 2009 in the game against Georgia Tech, Tyler broke the Dickie Hemric‘s (Wake Forest) NCAA record for all-time free throws made. Hansbrough finished his career with 982 free throws made. On March 14th, 2009 in a loss against Florida State, Psycho T passed Sam Perkins to become Carolina’s all-time rebounder. Tyler finished his career with 1,219 rebounds. On March 19th, 2009, Tyler broke J.J. Redick‘s record and became the ACC’s all-time leading scorer. Tyler was also the 2006 Freshman of the Year and is the ACC’s all-time leading scorer. Another highlight from this season was when North Carolina beat Duke in Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 11th, 2009. The score was 101-87. The significance of this victory was that Tyler Hansbrough, Bobby Frasor, Mike Copeland and Danny Green were 4-0 when playing Duke at their place; hence, some, if not many, Tar Heel fans refer to Duke’s basketball gymnasium as Hansbrough Indoor Stadium. In the 2009 NCAA Tournament, Carolina blew past all of their opponents. UNC beat all of their opponents by at least 12 points. In the 2009 national championship, Carolina beat Michigan State 89-72. This was the second time that Carolina beat Michigan State during this season. The first matchup on December 3rd, 2008, was won by Carolina by a score of 98-63. In the national championship game, Tywon Lawson set a record by having eight steals. In addition, Lawson was a second team NCAA all-american this season and he finished his career with the ACC’s second best career assist-turnover ratio (2.78).

1) UNC 1957 – This was a hard decision for me because the 2009 Tar Heels are my favorite team. Although this may be true, the 1957 team went undefeated with a 32-0 record. The head coach of this team was the legendary, Frank McGuire. The 1957 squad was loaded with talent. The roster included these studs: Lennie Rosenbluth, Pete Brennan, Tommy Kearns, and Joe Quigg. Pete Brennan was the 1958 ACC Player of the Year and a second team NCAA all-american in the following season. Lennie Rosenbluth was “the man” on this squad. He is arguably one of the greatest Tar Heels ever. During the 1956-1957 season, Lennie averaged 26.7 points. In addition, he was on several first and second team all-american teams. Prior to Duke’s Christian Laettner, Rosenbluth was the only player collegiate basketball player to be named the NCAA National Player of the Year, ACC Player of the Year, ACC Tournament MVP, and NCAA Regional MVP in the same season. This was North Carolina’s first championship when winning the NCAA Tournament. Keep in mind that the 1924 Tar Heels are the first national championship for the University of North Carolina. Rosenbluth is currently fourth on UNC’s all-time scoring list with 2,045 points. The only players ahead of him are Tyler Hansbrough (2,872), Phil Ford (2,290), and Sam Perkins (2,145). In the 1957 national championship game, North Carolina faced the Kansas Jayhawks who were led by Wilt Chamberlain. UNC beat Kansas in a triple-overtime thriller by a score of 54-53. Carolina had two other overtime games during this season, as well. On March 5th, 1957, UNC beat Maryland in a double-overtime game, 65-61. On March 22nd, 1957, Carolina beat Michigan State in triple-overtime game in a national semifinal game, 74-70. In fact, Carolina had two triple-overtime wins in the 1957 Final Four. The 1957 refused to lose to any team. This is why they are the best men’s basketball team in UNC basketball history.