"Letterman's Lane," the brick walkway between the Smith Center and Koury Natatorium on North Carolina's campus, will now be named for one basketball letterman in particular: Vince Carter.
The school announced Wednesday that the former All America has made a $2.5 million donation to the Carolina Basketball Family Fund, which paid for the renovations to the Smith Center basketball offices in 2010. The fund will support the operating endowment for the Tar Heels men's basketball program.
It is the largest gift, to date, to the fund, earning Carter more than a brick on the walkway that honors every varsity player, coach, trainer and manager in the history of UNC basketball.
"My days as a Carolina student, both pre-NBA and during the summers after I was drafted, will always be special to me," Carter, currently on the Phoenix Suns' roster, said in a prepared statement. "It goes without saying that I am a Tar Heel. For several years, I have been thinking about something I could do to leave a legacy at UNC. Lettermen's Lane is a perfect fit."
Carter starred at UNC from 1995-98, helping to lead the Tar Heels to back-to-back NCAA Final Four appearances in 1997 and '98.
He left UNC to become an NBA lottery pick after his junior season, but returned to earn his degree in African Studies in 2001.
"I am so pleased that Vince and his family are making such a statement about North Carolina basketball with this gift," UNC coach Roy Williams said in a prepared statement. "I have always known that he loves this University and our basketball team, but now he is showing it in a way that will help us for years to come.
"He is a remarkable young man and this involvement of he and his family is truly outstanding."
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