Ben Carnevale

Ben Carnevale (1915-2008)

Teams coached: North Carolina Tar Heels, Navy Midshipmen
North Carolina record: 52-11 (.825)
Navy record: 257-160 (.616)
Overall record: 309-171 (.644)

Career Accomplishments:


  • NABC Golden Anniversary Award (1994)
  • Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (inducted 1970)
  • National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame (inducted 2006)

Coaching Career (head coach, unless noted):

1946-1966 Navy
1944-1946 North Carolina

Ben Carnevale Facts

  • Bernard Louis Carnevale
  • Born October 30, 1915
  • Died March 25, 2008
  • Hometown: Raritan, New Jersey
  • Alma Mater: New York University (BA, 1937)
  • Graduated from Somerville HS (NJ) and went on to play at NYU under Hall of Fame head coach Howard Cann
    • Member of the 1935 team that was later awarded the National Championship by Premo-Porretta & the Helms Foundation
  • Served as a gunnery officer in the US Navy during World War II and received the Purple Heart, surviving on an open lifeboat for several days after his ship was torpedoed in December 1942
  • Became the head basketball coach at North Carolina in 1944, leading the Tar Heels to the NCAA National Championship game a year later (the program’s first)
  • Returned to the US Naval Academy in 1946, spending the next twenty seasons as the Midshipmen’s head basketball coach
    • Won 257 games and went five NCAA Tournaments in an era when the Naval Academy had a 6’5″ maximum height restriction for recruits
  • Served as a member of the United States Olympic Committee for 20 years, including four years as Chairman (Basketball)
  • After retiring from coaching, Carnevale stayed very involved in the sport
    • Elected president of the NABC, president of the NIT, president of the International Basketball Board and president of the National Association of College Directors of Athletics
    • Was Commissioner of what is now known as the Coastal Athletic Association (CAA)
    • Spent six years (1966-1972) as Director of Athletics at NYU and the nine years (1972-1981) in the same capacity at William & Mary
  • Along with his wife, Agnes, had one daughter and four sons

Ben Carnevale Coaching Tree