Mon, 04 Dec 2023

Rutgers 'royalty' Phil Sellers dies at 69

Field Level Media
21 Sep 2023, 08:05 GMT+10

(Photo credit: Jerry Carino / USA TODAY NETWORK)

Phil Sellers, Rutgers' all-time leading scorer and rebounder who led the school to the 1976 Final Four, died Tuesday night at the age of 69.

Sellers battled a series of health issues this year, including a stroke he suffered earlier this month, a family spokesman told NJ.com.

"Phil Sellers is Rutgers royalty," Rutgers coach Steve Pikiell said in a story posted to Rutgers' official website. "He is the greatest player on the greatest team in our program's history. His jersey is one of three that hang up in the rafters. ... He was the ultimate role model for our current Scarlet Knights. Rutgers men's basketball sends our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones. We love you Phil 'The Thrill'!

Sellers finished with 2,399 points and 1,115 rebounds. He averaged 21 points per game in his Rutgers' career, including 19.2 during the 1975-76 season, regarded as the best team in Rutgers history. Rutgers lost to Michigan in the national semifinals.

Sellers was recruited to Rutgers by Dick Vitale, then an assistant coach.

"Phil was such a fierce competitor, and he was dominant inside and outside. I am so sad to learn of his passing. To me, he is the greatest player in Rutgers hoops history," Vitale said.

Sellers was drafted in the third round of the 1976 draft by the Detroit Pistons but played just one season, averaging 4.5 points in 44 games.

--Field Level Media

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