Manhattan College basketball fans may start belting Bruce Springsteen’s “Glory Days” when they see the roster Team Draddy has put together for The Basketball Tournament. The squad is loaded with talented former Jaspers who helped the program reach such heights as back-to-back NCAA Tournaments in 2014 and 2015.
The backbone of the roster is four players from the 2013-14 Manhattan team that fell to Louisville by just seven points in the NCAA Tournament. The leader is George Beamon, who scored 1,843 points during his four years in green and white, the fourth-most in Manhattan history. The long-armed 6-foot-4 shooting guard has played professionally around the world, including in the G League, Iceland, Britain and Canada.
Rhamel Brown blocked 120 shots during the 2013-14 season and will provide a defensive anchor for Team Draddy’s frontcourt. Brown is Manhattan’s all-time leader in blocked shots with 367 in his career. He also grabbed 810 rebounds, good for eighth all-time. Brown played this season for the Halifax Hurricanes in the Canadian basketball league where he scored 8.9 points and blocked 1.6 shots per game.
Shane Richards was on the 2013-14 team, but he became the man the next season when he set Manhattan’s school record for three-pointers made in a season with 92. He’s a long-distance marksman who is also Manhattan’s all-time leader in career three-point makes. Richards has also played in the G League in the past and will provide excellent shooting.
While Rich Williams was just a freshman on that 2013-14 team, he grew into one of the best scorers in Manhattan history. Williams scored 1,187 career points in Riverdale, the 24th-most all-time. Brown will be joined in the frontcourt by another former Jasper great, Zane Waterman. The 6-foot-9 power forward is the 18th leading scorer in Manhattan history at 1,275 career points.
Team Draddy’s eight-man roster is rounded out by three other veteran Jaspers. C.J. Anderson played two seasons with Manhattan between 2004 and 2006 before transferring to Xavier to finish his collegiate career. Zavier Turner started his career at Ball State before finishing at Manhattan. Despite being 5-foot-9, Turner is a tenacious defender who averaged 4.3 assists per game during his final season with the Jaspers in 2017-18.
And finally there is Dave Holmes. The 6-foot-7 power forward is a tie back to the 2003-04 Manhattan team that upset fifth-seeded Florida and advanced to the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament under Bobby Gonzalez. Holmes was the leading rebounder and second-leading scorer on that team.
Seventh-seeded Team Draddy will need a little bit of that upset magic if it’s going to advanced through the Syracuse Regional in The Basketball Tournament. The former Jaspers open with Armored Athlete, a veteran TBT squad. It’ll be a tough road, but a great chance for Jasper fans to see some of the program’s all-time greats back in green and white.