NC State

NC State's Bailey: Spirit of 1983 championship team will never die

Posted August 8, 2014

Forward Thurl Bailey spent four years at NC State, a solid playing career capped by the 1983 National Championship. From there, he spent 12 years playing in the NBA – mostly with the Utah Jazz. He retired in 1999 but hasn't strayed far from the game.

"I've been a broadcaster. So I do all the pre, post and halftime for all the Jazz's televised games," said Bailey.

The man with the powerful voice is also a motivational speaker who can punctuate his message with vocals.

"I can throw out a few tunes," said Bailey.

Harry Chapin's 'Cats in the Cradle' is one of his favorites. It's the story of a father who was too busy at work to spend time with his son.

"You should see it sometimes, I'm singing that and dads are crying," said Bailey. "You can see them reflecting and thinking about regardless of what's going on in their lives they have to make sure they are there for their families."

Thurl Bailey enjoys being the father of six. One daughter Breelle is a volleyball star at Arizona State. His son Brendan is a rising high school junior in Utah, the 6-7 wing hopes to play in college.

"It was kind of cool, one of his last two tournaments, NC State was there," said Bailey. "As a matter of fact, there were a lot of ACC schools there."

This weekend here in Raleigh, Bailey will spend time with his band of brothers from the 1983 team.

"It's important for us to do that because we're getting older," said Bailey.

The roster has thinned – gone are the head coach, an assistant and the man responsible for that thunderous dunk. When the ESPN documentary 'Survive and Advance' was filmed two years ago, the team made a promise to do everything possible to huddle up once a year.

"The spirit of what we did and who we are will never die," said Bailey. "Although we have a few who aren't here physically we'll take the opportunity to pay homage. They'll be with us at the table as we tell our stories. We will laugh a lot, probably shed a few tears. But that's what families do."


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  • 903 wejustnotthatgood Aug 11, 2014

    Dial telephones, black and white t.v., big cars, cheap tennis shoes, thrown basketball games against Tampa College, basketball coach being named AD, a system setup for cheating, Yes,, that was long ago. That my HATEment

  • joefurloughski Aug 11, 2014

    I was a freshman at NC State that year. Watched the championship game on the 12th floor in Metcalf dorm in a room about the size of a large closet with 10 other students. It was such a great time of camaraderie and fun. It was really more than just about basketball. Thank you NCSU for all the success you helped me achieve, especially my 6 figure salary.


    silly team hole why don't grow a pair and look at the real picture- EW-EN-SEE has embarrassed themselves, the league, and the state of N.C.- the carowhina way - obsess no! feel the shame they have put on the state and are still trying to deny and cover it up-YOU SILLY BOY

  • Seal Team Heel Aug 10, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Gotta love you Red Riding Hoods that use another poster as an excuse to show your ignorance...I obvously struck a never with my truthful why don't you list UNC players you think are fine citizens to show us your ability to look beyond your UNC obsession...


    View quoted thread

    a hole fan started the negative hype- which they do so well.
    I met Thurl shortly after the 83 season and he is a first class guy as is a lot of pack players, Ted Brown, Holt brothers, Carl Reeves and so many more I have had to privilege to meet - but the holes fans are usually the ones turn in the negative comments- but it is who you - so live it, love it wallow in it.
    all the rashad mccanst of the world.

  • Seal Team Heel Aug 10, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Leave it to an ABCer to come in and spoil it, although you are painting it with a hatefully broad brush. Now someone will have to bring up all the NCSU players who are not the most stellar of citizens. Leave it to an ABCer to not celebrate Thurl which proves out the theory that Back Packers care more about UNC not doing well than anyone from NCSU doing well. Great Job.

  • Steven Cousler Aug 10, 2014
    user avatar

    I grew up an NCSU fan during the DT era, then switched to UNC when it became my alma mater. However, I truly enjoyed the NCSU '83 team's season and unlikely championship win. Rare win by a decided underdog over what was thought to be an unbeatable team and done in an exciting manner. That game is magical and will never fade away.

  • Doc Holliday Aug 9, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Yep.....nasty stuff, T, & he's only gonna get better.

  • Toddler10-21 Aug 9, 2014

    Rodon is gonna be a good one B.


    View quoted thread

    yea its nice to hang your hat on class guys
    such as PJ, LT, rasheed wallace and rashad mccants just to name a few now that is what ou call embarrassment




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