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Woody Durham, UNC Announcer, Passes Away At 76

Longtime UNC Announcer Woody Durham Dies at 76

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

Woody Durham, the longtime radio voice of the North Carolina Tar Heels, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Tuesday night.

UNC and Syracuse are set to tip off about 20 minutes following the conclusion of the Notre Dame-Virginia Tech game.

After graduating from UNC in 1963, Durham worked in the Carolinas for eight years before returning to his alma mater in 1971 to become its new play-by-play announcer for basketball and football. He was not scheduled to call the championship game Saturday night.

During football games at Kenan Stadium, the student section would chant his name gently until it grew into a roar: "Woody!" With AP Photos.Theo Pinson had 16 points, 11 rebounds and six assists and Kenny Williams scored 17 as No. 12 North Carolina beat Syracuse 78-59 to advance to the quarterfinals of the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament. His voice was the sound of Carolina and it will forever ring clear and true.

I've watched and played a lot of basketball, but I have never seen anything like our student section during a game begin to chant softly - "Woody, Woody, Woody" until the entire crowd is screaming Woody Durham's name.

In addition to his work with the Tar Heels, Durham also spent many years as a TV sports anchor. 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.

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"I hope that Tar Heel fans didn't notice or didn't listen, but there were too many times during various broadcasts when I wasn't pleased with my level of presentation", Durham said.

"It's a very sad day for everyone who loves the University of North Carolina because we have lost someone who spent almost 50 years as one of its greatest champions and ambassadors", Williams said.

Harris expressed his condolences for the family, saying, "I feel sorry, for Jean, Wes, Taylor and the family".

UNC has announced a celebration of Durham's life will be April 8 at Carmichael Arena in Chapel Hill, N.C.

Growing up on Tobacco Road in the 1990's, the necessity of radio mostly missed me but the necessity of Woody did not.

Every pregame video montage will echo his voice throughout the Smith Center, as he calls the final seconds of the 1982, 1993, 2005 and 2009 national championships.

Roy Williams paid tribute to the former broadcaster with his own statement. We are saddened to hear of his passing and his family, friends and fans are in our prayers.

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