St. John’s basketball to unveil statue of legendary coach Lou Carnesecca

St. John's basketball head coach Lou Carnesecca (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
St. John's basketball head coach Lou Carnesecca (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /

St. John’s basketball program has revealed plans to dedicate a statue to Lou Carnesecca. 

It feels like a long overdue dedication but the St. John’s basketball program announced on Wednesday plans to unveil a statue of legendary head coach Lou Carnesecca on Friday, October 22.

Carnesecca, 96, spent 24 years as the head coach of St. John’s where the Johnnies won a total of 526 games in his two stints in Queens.

The Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer won five Big East regular season titles and two Big East Tournament Championships while also leading St. John’s to its second, and most recent, Final Four in the 1984-85 season.

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St. John’s plans for the statue unveiling to be the beginning event in the university’s homecoming weekend as the Red Storm will host its annual Tip-Off event on Friday evening before holding a statue dedication on Saturday, October 23 prior to its 2021 Athletic Hall of Fame induction.

The statue will be placed in the lobby of the entrance to Carnesecca Arena.

“Coach [Carnesecca] is the reason that so many of our supporters first fell in love with St. John’s Basketball, so it will be fitting that he greets fans as they walk in the door for a game,” St. John’s Athletic Director Mike Cragg said in a statement.

St. John’s basketball legendary head coach still involved with the program

Lou Carnesecca is heavily involved with the St. John’s basketball program even in his older age.

Cragg posted a photo to social media last month of current head coach Mike Anderson, Lou Carnesecca, and himself out to lunch.

Anderson revealed last season that he spoke with Carnesecca approximately twice per week since spectators were not allowed at basketball games last season due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Anderson is the reigning Big East’s Coach of the Year, an award Carnesecca won three times in his St. John’s career.

“This is sure to be a memorable weekend for St. John’s Athletics and the greater University community. I think this will be a great way to welcome everyone back, after being apart for a long year and a half, to reconnect and celebrate together,” Cragg added.

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