St. John's Basketball Centennial Honored By New York Stock Exchange|
March 5, 2008
NEW YORK - St. John's University's 100th Anniversary of its storied Men's Basketball program was feted at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Tuesday, March 4 in Manhattan. St. John's Hall of Fame basketball coach Lou Carnesecca rang the NYSE's closing bell accompanied by a host of alumni and dignitaries in celebration of its 100 years of excellence on the hardwood.
The closing bell ceremony is seen by more than 120 million worldwide and carried live on CNBC and on the NYSE website here, which archives all video footage.
"It was just a marvelous experience," said Carnesecca about his first ever appearance at the NYSE. "I was very excited and for a guy like me to have this opportunity with my former players and friends around me was very moving."
The St. John's contingent was treated to a pre-event reception hosted by Thomas E. Veit, Senior Vice President, NYSE. Escorted to the podium by Veit for the official ceremony, Carnesecca was greeted with chants of "Lou" from the traders on the NYSE floor as he pounded the gavel to close the market.
"All the success and winning is a result of great coaches and great teams and we're happy to honor St. John's University here in our arena at the New York Stock Exchange," said Veit.
After the closing bell ceremony, Carnesecca entertained interviews from local media and signed autographs on the trading floor to close the festivities for the day.
"The great thing with an event like this is you really realize how many people the program has reached over the generations," said Chris Monasch, St. John's Director of Athletics, referring to the reaction from the crowd.
Joining Carnesecca and Monasch were 30 former St. John's players, alumni, administrators and friends who have been an integral part of the storied men's collegiate basketball program and its history.
St. John's entered the 2007-08 season as the seventh all-time winningest program in the NCAA Division I record book with 1,659 wins and 831 losses. The school's .666 winning percentage ranks ninth all-time in NCAA history, while St. John's 26 all-time NCAA Tournament appearances ties for 13th. The program's 26 NIT appearances and five titles are also unprecedented. Helms Foundation national champions following the 1910-11 season, St. John's appeared in NCAA Final Fours in 1952 and 1985. The program boasts 11 consensus All-Americans, 59 NBA Draft choices and 43 players that have scored 1,000 career points or more.