By CBS3 Staff

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — La Salle University has found its next men’s basketball coach and a Philadelphia hoops legend. La Salle on Tuesday night announced the hiring of 73-year-old Fran Dunphy as its 20th head coach in the program’s history.

Dunphy, a La Salle alumni and the all-time winningest coach in Big 5 history, will try to revive the Explorers’ program.

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“La Salle has given me so much over the years,” Dunphy told GoExplorers.com. “It gave me a chance to be a part of multiple teams as a student-athlete, an opportunity to form life-long friendships and helped mold me into the man I am today. I can’t wait to work with the young men on the team, reintroduce myself to the campus community and to help my alma mater any way I can.”

Dunphy comes back to La Salle after securing nearly 600 wins in his 30 years as a head coach at the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University, and he’s coached 17 teams that made the NCAA Tournament over the course of his career.

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He last coached at Temple, taking over for Naismith Hall of Famer John Chaney in 2006 until the 2019 season. Dunphy moved into an interim athletic director position at Temple in 2020. In his 13 years as the Owls’ head coach, TU made the tournament eight times and beat nationally-ranked teams 18 times.

Dunphy began his head coaching career in Philly in 1989 at Penn. He won 10 Ivy League titles, recorded nine 20-win campaigns and won 310 games in his 17 years as Penn’s head coach. The 310 wins remain the most ever won by a Penn head coach.

“During my time at La Salle, I have met many passionate alums who personify what it means to be an Explorer,” Vice President for Athletics & Recreation Brian Baptiste said. “Fran Dunphy is at the top of that list, and to be able to introduce him as the 20th head coach in La Salle men’s basketball history is an honor and privilege. In my conversations with Fran, he has made it clear that he still has a passion for coaching and a burning desire to help his alma mater. I know he’s excited to get to work and I know our student-athletes will benefit from having him as the leader of our program.”

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Dunphy graduated from La Salle in 1970 and served on the Exploers’ coaching staff in 1979 and then again from 1985 until 1988.