PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – There was a hair-raising (or razing?) experience today on the Temple University campus. Owls’ basketball coach Fran Dunphy shaved off his mustache, after promising former player Dionte Christmas he would if the young man finished his degree.

Coach Dunphy’s trademark mustache has been an accessory on his upper lip for 40 years.  He says his wife never saw him without it.

But today they found a razor, Dunphy got lathered up, and off it came.

“How am I looking so far?” Dunphy wondered aloud, working the razor with a tiny mirror in hand.  “I have no idea what’s underneath it.”

christmas dionte side tawa Temple Owls Coach Fran Dunphy Takes An Inspirational Shave

(Credit: Steve Tawa)

The shave was in honor of former player Dionte Christmas’ graduation. Christmas (right), now 25, played for Dunphy between 2006 and 2009 but fell just three credits short of graduating.

“When Coach Dunphy came, he really taught me a lot about basketball, life, being a man, and everything,” Christmas recalls. “He was like my second father.”

 Story continues below photo…

dunphy shaved dl tawa Temple Owls Coach Fran Dunphy Takes An Inspirational Shave

(Credit: Steve Tawa)


Christmas, who is 6’6″ and has played pro basketball in Israel, Turkey, and Greece the last three years, finished his course work and earned a degree in August, “not only for Coach Dunphy and Temple, but for myself,” he says.

Meanwhile, Coach thinks Christmas will take his basketball career to the next level:

“He has an NBA game.  He has the ability to make shots at the NBA level.”

Meanwhile, he’s also got a college degree.

Reported by Steve Tawa, KYW Newsradio 1060

Top Content On CBSPhilly

Watch & Listen LIVE