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1988-89 Men's Basketball Team Hall of Fame Induction

It is an honor to officially announce the 1988-89 men's basketball team has been selected for induction into the Seton Hall Athletics Hall of Fame. In recognition of the 25th anniversary of the program's run to the National Championship Game, all players, coaches and managers associated with the memorable feat will go in as the first team to be inducted into our Hall of Fame. Mark your calendars for Wednesday, June 18 as we welcome former head coach P.J. Carlesimo and the rest of the squad back to the site where it all started, historic Walsh Gymnasium, for our annual Hall of Fame Dinner. Sponsorship opportunities are available and can be coordinated through Jay Judge, Assistant Athletic Director for Development (jay.judge@shu.edu , 973-275-2202). Visit SHUPirates.com on Thursday for ticket information and event details.

"30 for 30" Men's Basketball Season Ticket Program

April is here and with it comes the return of our popular "30 for 30" initiative which rewards those who take advantage of this early opportunity to secure men's basketball season tickets for the 2014-15 season.

By making a $150 deposit, participants will be entered in a daily drawing with the chance to win a wide array of Seton Hall and Prudential Center-themed prizes. Some of the most notable rewards that we are excited to offer this month include a complimentary parking pass for the VIP Deck at the Prudential Center for the entire season, four courtside seats to the home opener, a party suite for the home opener and four tickets to the Pirate Blue hospitality suite at a specified home game.

Once your deposit is made, be sure to stay tuned to our official Twitter and Facebook pages, as well as SHUPirates.com where the winners will be revealed.

Here at Seton Hall, we are fortunate to have one of the most loyal and dedicated fan bases in the nation. The support we receive year in and year out is a huge part of the storied tradition of our program and this is our chance to show a bit of our appreciation. I know that many of you bleed Pirate Blue and I was thrilled to get the chance to interact with so many devoted Pirates as that commitment was put on full display last month at the BIG EAST Tournament where our team made its most successful run in over a decade.

Such dedication was also evident during last year's "Donor Matching Day," a highly-successful initiative which will once again mark the culmination of the "30 for 30" program. Thanks to the generous contributions of an anonymous friend of Seton Hall baseball and donors around the world, last year's Donor Matching Day helped set a Pirate Blue record by generating over $70,000 for Seton Hall Athletics over a single day.

Your support is a driving force behind the large-scale upgrades we have made in recent years and I know that together, we will be able to continue to position current and future Pirates to succeed at the highest level during their collegiate careers and beyond.

For more information on "30 for 30" and "Donor Matching Day" and how you can get involved, CLICK HERE

Third-Annual Student-Athlete Leadership Forum

In the final week of March, we were privileged to welcome back four distinguished alums to Seton Hall who donated their time to speak with our student-athletes at our annual leadership forum. This year's panel featured ESPN's Bob Ley '76, Jim O'Brien '82, former swimmer Shannon Morris `92/M.A. '94 and Bob Sloan MBA '86. The event epitomized what we aim for when assembling a group to impart their wisdom on our student athletes during this very important evening.

The forum, which is a pillar of our Helping Athletes Learn to be Leaders (H.A.L.L.) Program, has customarily provided a platform for current Pirates to learn from and interact with business professionals who have reached the height of their respective fields. It is structured in a way that encourages open discussion rather than lecture, steering the dialogue towards the issues that are at the forefront for our current student-athletes.

Throughout the evening, the panelists took questions and engaged in discussion with representatives from all teams that were not in competition that evening before closing the night by making themselves available for one-on-one interaction.

I would like to extend my gratitude to Mr. Ley, Ms. Morris, Mr. O'Brien and Mr. Sloan for helping making this event a success yet again while also commending our student-athletes for taking full advantage of this opportunity to further their professional development.

Academics and ensuring that the young men and women who choose to represent Seton Hall athletically are equipped with the tools necessary to succeed once their time here is completed have and always will be of paramount importance. The Leadership Forum is one of many events throughout the year designed to supplement the daily efforts to support our student-athletes in their many pursuits and we will continue to strive to provide the most comprehensive student-athlete experience possible.

Click here for the Photo Gallery.

Student-Athletes Honored by Stillman School of Business

Alyssa Warren (Volleyball)
and Matt Benson (Men's Swimming)

In that light, on behalf of the Athletic Department, I would like to congratulate 12 of our student athletes who were recognized by the Stillman School of Business for their academic achievements during the annual Integrity and Professional Scholarship Luncheon on March 26. In total, eight athletic teams were represented as our student athletes received a variety of awards and academic scholarships for their accomplishments in the classroom.

Matthew Benson (Swimming & Diving) and Alyssa Warren (Volleyball) received the Senior Assessment Prize, Joseph Poduslenko (Baseball) and Jack Poupore (Swimming & Diving) earned the Mills Prize for Academic Excellence, while Alison Kruse (Women's Golf) and Mateusz Brela (Men's Soccer) were awarded the Mutual Benefit Life Scholarship. In addition, Ruth Ryan (Cross Country) collected the Sophomore Achievement Prize, James Logan (Swimming & Diving) was awarded the Economics Fund Scholarship, Tyler Orner (Cross Country) got the Accounting Endowment Scholarship and John Walsh (Cross Country) received the John P Deehan Scholarship. Victor Manosalvas (Men's Soccer) collected the RJR Nabisco Scholarship and Parker Mann (Men's Golf) rounded out the award winners with the Gleason Family Foundation Scholarship.

These individuals represent a fraction of Seton Hall student athletes who have established a track record of placing equal emphasis on academics as well as athletics, and have benefitted from new resources such as the Charles W. Doehler Academic Center. Their hard work and dedication has resulted in an all-time high for the cumulative grade point average of our student athletes.

Pirate Pride Challenge Update

We are in the midst of another successful Pirate Pride Challenge that has generated tremendous support from alumni, student-athletes and friends of the program. I am proud to announce for the second straight year we have reached 100% participation from our 224 student-athletes, which is truly a remarkable accomplishment and displays the character of those who represent our 14 athletic teams.

After two months of competition the 2014 Pirate Pride Challenge Final Four is set. In the Blue Region, the baseball team came out victorious against a strong effort by men's basketball. In the White Region, the joint effort of men's and women's golf has led them to a victory over volleyball, the 2013 Pirate Pride Challenge Champions. The women's soccer team overcame a slow start and defeated the softball team in the Gray Region. The final spot went to women's basketball that was the last team standing in the 'Wild Card' Region.

The Final Four (baseball, golf, women's soccer and women's basketball) will compete through April for a chance to advance to the championship round in May with a grand prize of $5,000 that will be awarded to the winning program. For more information on how to support your respective athletic team visit www.piratepridechallenge.com.

Women's Basketball Season in Review

Our women's basketball team recently concluded what could be considered its most successful season in nearly 20 years. I want to congratulate those student athletes, head coach Tony Bozzella and his staff, for a wonderful year culminating with a postseason run that captivated the Seton Hall community.

When I introduced Tony as our new women's basketball coach just over one year ago, I did so with the confidence he would transform the program, and his first season did not disappoint. The milestones from this past season are numerous - the first postseason berth since 2007, the deepest run in the WNIT in school history, the first 20-win season since 1995, just to name a few of the marquee accomplishments. Tony Bozzella bleeds Pirate Blue and his passion and enthusiasm for Seton Hall University is contagious.

We were fortunate to host a pair of postseason games in Walsh Gymnasium and the turnout from our students, fans and alumni was outstanding. Perhaps even more impressive was going to the RAC last Thursday night to see so many Seton Hall faithful wearing blue and cheering for a team that left it all on the floor for their school and their team. Congratulations again to our student athletes for such a memorable season and thank you to all who showed their support. This year is a sign of things to come for a program on the rise.

Baseball Continues to Excel

I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge our baseball team's early season success. Rob Sheppard's team is off to its best start since 1987. That season, our team won its first BIG EAST Championship. For the last five weeks, the Pirates have been ranked #22 in Collegiate Baseball's Top-30 national rankings. They've won their last six weekend series, including four sweeps, and currently lead the BIG EAST Conference in both team batting and team pitching.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention the individual accolades of senior Josh Prevost. He has already been named BIG EAST Pitcher of the Week four times and currently leads the conference in wins, earned run average (ERA), innings pitched and strikeouts, sporting a perfect 7-0 record with a microscopic 1.45 ERA.

Offensively, four of the top six leaders in batting average in the BIG EAST Conference are Seton Hall Pirates with junior D.J. Ruhlman leading the conference at .373. Juniors Sal Annunziata and Tyler Boyd have already been named BIG EAST Player of the Week. Collectively, Seton Hall ranks amongst the national top-10 in team batting average.

As the weather improves and the team spends more time at Owen T. Carroll Field, be sure to come out and lend your support. Visit SHUPirates.com for the baseball schedule.