The college basketball world lost a legend on Monday when former Princeton Tigers head coach Pete Carril died at the age of 92. Carril’s family put out a statement through Princeton on Monday afternoon.
“The Carril family is sad to report that Coach Peter J. Carril passed away peacefully this morning. We kindly ask that you please respect our privacy at this time as we process our loss and handle necessary arrangements. More information will be forthcoming in the following days.”
Dick Vitale was one of many to pay tribute to Pete Carril upon hearing of his passing:
I believe that in defining greatness in coaches u must determine if they get maximum out of their TEAM personnel . PETE CARRIL is a prime example of a brilliant coaching mind that got max out of his talent . May Coach RIP ! @ESPN App https://t.co/8kHMczqUWD
— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) August 15, 2022
Pete Carril was known as the mastermind of the Princeton Offense, which emphasizes constant motion, back cuts, screens and teamwork. While the roots of the Princeton Offense go back further than Carril, he perfected it and popularized it during his coaching tenure. He coached the Tigers from 1967 to 1996 and won 514 games, earning 13 Ivy League championships and 11 NCAA Tournament appearances in the process.
Carril’s Princeton team nearly made history in the 1989 NCAA Tournament. The Tigers were the No. 16 seed in the tournament going up against the top-seeded Georgetown Hoyas. In a thriller, Princeton fell just shy of becoming the first 16-seed to beat a 1-seed in NCAA Tournament history, losing 50-49. A 16 has only defeated a 1 a single time, when UMBC destroyed Virginia in 2018. Vitale provided studio coverage for ESPN of the Georgetown-Princeton showdown and showed a lot of love to the Tigers after the near-upset.
In addition to his days coaching Princeton, Pete Carril spent time in the NBA as an assistant coach for the Sacramento Kings. RIP to a coaching legend.