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The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

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Hawk History: 2008 NCAA St. Joe’s men’s basketball March Madness trophy

The 2008 NCAA St. Joe’s men’s basketball March Madness Trophy resides in the Saint Joe’s archives. PHOTO COURTESY P.J. O’HARA ’23

The 2008 St. Joe’s men’s basketball trophy for their March Madness appearance tells a story of triumph and dedication.

That year, the team earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament after finishing fourth in the Atlantic 10 (A-10) standings. With a 21-13 record, the Hawks soared to a tournament birth and an 11 seed in the East Region against 6 seeded University of Oklahoma. 

The SJU Archives, located in Drexel Library, acquired the trophy from SJU University Athletics in 2015, according to Lesley Carey, university archivist. The base is made of smooth, dense maple wood and topped with clear, spotless glass and stands at about 10 inches tall.

The team was led by Pat Calathes ’08, who averaged a team best 17.5 points per game. Calathes earned an array of awards that year, including Big 5 Co-Player of the Year and A-10 All-Conference First Team honors.

“I believe we definitely met expectations for that season,” Calathes told The Hawk. “The ultimate goal every year is to make the NCAA tournament, and we were able to accomplish that.”

Calathes, now a sports agent for Federation Internationale de Amateur, said his favorite memory was a big win against Xavier University the last week of the season at Alumni Memorial Fieldhouse, which is now known as Hagan Arena. It was the Hawks’ last home game of the season against the 11th ranked team in the country.

“It was the perfect way to end out my four years in that arena,” Calathes said. “The dunking highlight of my college career was also during that game so that doesn’t hurt either.”

With the help of Rob Ferguson ’08 and Ahmad Nivins ’09, the Hawks defeated Xavier 71-66.

Although the season ended when the Hawks lost 72-64 against Oklahoma in the opening round of the tournament, the team was given the trophy that symbolized their hard-fought tournament appearance.

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