Discover the latest information about former UNC basketball star Eric Montross. Update on Eric Montross’s health and his journey with cancer. Learn more about Eric Montross’s UNC legacy and any recent developments. Access reliable information about Eric Montross’s condition and stay updated on his health.
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Legendary North Carolina Tar Heels center Eric Montross has passed away at the age of 52 after an undisclosed battle with cancer. Montross died peacefully at home on March 12, surrounded by loved ones, just over nine months after announcing his diagnosis.
A towering figure in UNC basketball lore, the 7-foot Montross was a formidable presence who led the Tar Heels’ 1993 national championship team under his famous coach Dean Smith’s voice. During his illustrious four-year career in Chapel Hill from 1990-1994, Montross established himself as one of the program’s greatest big men of all time.
Montross played alongside current Tar Heels head coach Hubert Davis during his first two seasons, helping the NCAA Tournament advance as far as the Final Four in 1991 and the Sweet Sixteen in 1992. As a An upperclassman, Montross controlled the paint as Carolina won the ’93 title by defeating Michigan’s famous “Fab Five” team.
The indelible highlight was future NBA star Chris Webber trying to incorrectly call a timeout when Michigan had no timeouts left, resulting in a technical foul that won the championship for the Tar Heels. Montross called it the “storybook ending” to his junior campaign.
Selected ninth overall in the 1994 NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics, Montross carried his winning pedigree into a nine-year professional career. After retiring, he returned to Chapel Hill in 2006 to begin an 18-year run as the popular color analyst for the Tar Heel Sports Network.
Montross left this past season fighting the cancer that took his life. But his graceful presence on Carolina broadcasts is a lasting memory for UNC fans.
While Montross’ on-field accomplishments cemented his status as a Tar Heel icon, his positive impact resonated deeply throughout the campus and surrounding community. He has championed cancer research at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Montross also hosts an annual Father’s Day basketball camp to raise money for UNC Children’s Hospital, demonstrating his unwavering faith and GENIUS, while embodying the College’s ideals as a perfect AMBASSADOR .
Upon learning of Montross’s death, UNC Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz remembered him as follows:
“A great Tar Heel and Eric will be truly missed. Please keep Laura, Sarah, Andrew and Megan in your thoughts and prayers.”
The university confirmed that Montross passed away peacefully surrounded by his family. He leaves behind his wife Laura, a former UNC cheerleader, and three children: Sarah, Andrew and Megan.
While his death at the age of 52 was tragically premature, Eric Montross left a tremendous legacy in North Carolina and within the college basketball pantheon. He demonstrated leadership, selflessness and courage, both during his playing days and long after. Montross remains a deeply beloved figure whose light shines brightly on Tobacco Road and beyond.