Former Rutgers star Phil Sellers, who led program to only Final Four, dies at 69

Phil Sellers remains to be Rutgers’ main scorer and main rebounder after a dominant run within the Nineteen Seventies. (Porter Binks/Getty Photographs)

Former Rutgers star Phil Sellers, who led this system to its first and solely Ultimate 4 look in 1976, died on Tuesday evening, the varsity introduced.

He was 69.

Sellers performed at Rutgers for 4 seasons from 1972-1976. He scored 2,399 factors and had 1,115 rebounds whereas with the Scarlet Knights, and remains to be this system’s main scorer and rebounder. He helped lead the group on its solely Ultimate 4 run throughout the 1975-76 season, too, although the Scarlet Knights had been knocked out within the semifinals by Michigan.

Sellers performed underneath coach Richard Lloyd and Tom Younger whereas at Rutgers, and recruited by former coach and present ESPN broadcaster Dick Vitale — who was an assistant on the faculty on the time.

“Phil was the catalyst in our nice recruiting class that performed a significant consider Rutgers having unbelievable success within the Nineteen Seventies that led us all the way in which to the Ultimate 4,” Vitale . “As soon as we had been capable of get Phil, we had been capable of get the perfect participant in New Jersey Mike Dabney. Phil was such a fierce competitor, and he was dominant inside and out of doors. I’m so unhappy to study of his passing. To me, he’s the best participant in Rutgers hoops historical past.”

Sellers, a New York Metropolis space native, averaged 21 factors and 9.8 rebounds over his 4 seasons with the Scarlet Knights. He averaged 19.2 factors and 10.2 rebounds throughout his senior season, which was Rutgers’ ultimate one as an impartial faculty earlier than it joined the Japanese Collegiate Basketball League. The Scarlet Knights went 31-2 that season, and completed ranked No. 4 within the nation.

Sellers was then chosen within the third spherical of the 1976 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons. He spent one 12 months within the league in Detroit, the place he averaged 4.5 factors in 7.5 minutes per recreation.

“Phil Sellers is Rutgers royalty. He’s the best participant on the best group in our program’s historical past,” present Rutgers coach Steve Pikiell . “His jersey is considered one of three that dangle up within the rafters at Jersey Mike’s Area. He was the final word function mannequin for our present Scarlet Knights. Rutgers males’s basketball sends our deepest condolences to his household and family members. We love you Phil ‘The Thrill’!”

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