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Former UNC hoops star Pete Brennan dies at 75

June 8, 2012

DURHAM — Former North Carolina basketball star Pete Brennan, whose crucial shot in the semifinals helped the Tar Heels win the 1957 national championship, died Friday after a fight with cancer, his daughter said.

Brennan, 75, was at a Durham rehabilitation center after his discharge about a week ago from UNC Hospitals, where he was treated for diverticulitis, said Kelly Brennan of Birmingham, Ala. Brennan had been diagnosed with prostate cancer in April, his daughter said.

Brennan was a member of the 1957 team that went unbeaten and won the national championship with a triple-overtime victory over Wilt Chamberlain and Kansas. Brennan's jumper with 4 seconds left forced the second of three overtimes in the semifinal win over Michigan State.

Brennan was Atlantic Coast Conference player of the year in 1958 and his No. 35 jersey hangs in the Smith Center.

Brennan was a first-round draft pick of the New York Knicks in 1958.

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