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North Carolina Pays Tribute To Former Broadcaster At ACC Tournament

North Carolina Pays Tribute To Former Broadcaster At ACC Tournament

As they prepared to take on Syracuse in the second round of the ACC Tournament, North Carolina paid homage to one of the all-time greats in the world of broadcasting.

"When UNC was playing and the microphone came on, Woody was the best there ever was".

The name was "Woody" was on the back of North Carolina's warm-ups on Wednesday night in the Barclays Center.

Durham, known as the Voice of the Tar Heels, spent 40 years calling Tar Heel football and basketball games, including 23 football bowl games, 13 men's Final Fours and six national championships, before he retired in 2011.

Durham's family said he passed away around 12:45 a.m. after being admitted to hospice care earlier in the week.

Carolina won 18 ACC Tournament championships and played in the championship game a record 34 times. "Woody! Woody!" He would stick his head out from the press box and give them a wave.

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The connectedness of Durham not only spans generations of fans, but generations of media. The North Carolina Tar Heels are averaging 83 points on 46.6 percent shooting and allowing 74 points on 42.8 percent shooting. "But it was always more than the sound of his voice; his success was determined by his professional approach, his preparation and his ability to develop the human side of the student athletes and coaches who represented his alma mater". On Feb. 17, 2016, North Carolina honored him during a halftime ceremony.

Wes Durham was courtside Wednesday night doing play-by-play on Notre Dame-Virginia Tech and North Carolina-Syracuse for Raycom Sports. Beaming in front of full-capacity crowd, he received his Curt Gowdy Media Award from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame - and a standing ovation.

"When I got into North Carolina, back in the late '90s working for Wake Forest, began to have a personal relationship with Woody, which was really kind of neat for a young broadcaster like me at the time", said Cotten, who started with Wake Forest in 1996. He broadcast football and men's basketball for 40 years as well as having hosted "The Dean Smith Show" on television.

Durham is survived by Jean, his wife of 54 years; sons Wes and Taylor; and grandchildren Emily and Will.

The UNC athletic department has scheduled a celebration of Woody's life for April 8 at Carmichael Arena.

Growing up on Tobacco Road in the 1990's, the necessity of radio mostly missed me but the necessity of Woody did not. We are saddened to hear of his passing and his family, friends and fans are in our prayers. "Any time we were on the road he would travel with us so I got to know him quite well".