Thursday, December 4, 2008

Lights, Camera, Carmody

While TigerBlog was supporting its Ivy League counterpart over the weekend by watching the Cornell-Indiana men's basketball game on the Big Ten Network, on came a commercial from the network featuring all 11 Big Ten men's basketball coaches encouraging fans to watch the league's hoops on its home channel in the way coaches best know how: a pep talk.

Appearing four times in the spot was former Princeton coach Bill Carmody, who spent 18 seasons in Jadwin Gym.

You can watch the spot here. Unfortunately, the former Tiger mentor didn't get the exclamation point scene in the ad. That went to the Big Ten's rookie coach, Tom Crean of Indiana, who made it impossible for the Big Ten to say that no clipboards were harmed in the making of that commercial.

Carmody's first 14 seasons were as an assistant coach under Pete Carril, and the last four were as Princeton's head coach. He had a 92-25 record as the lead man from 1996-2000, including 50-6 in the Ivy League with two league-undefeated seasons and an NCAA Tournament first-round win in 1998, the last time the league won in the big dance.

Following the 1999-2000 season, Carmody went to Northwestern, where he remains today and has had a pair of Princeton alums on his staff. One was Craig Robinson '83, who then went on to become the head coach at Brown and is now at Oregon State, and Mitch Henderson '98, who remains in Evanston with Carmody.

Last night in the final game of the Big Ten/ACC challenge, Carmody achieved a milestone that was helped in large part by his days at Princeton. In defeating Florida State, Carmody won his 200th career game, 92 of which came with the Tigers. Of those, 159 came with Henderson, including all 108 as an assistant at Northwestern and 51 as a player at Princeton.

Carmody will be able to celebrate both a professional and personal milestone, as his 200th career win came on the eve of his 57th birthday today.

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