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Scholastic Roundup: Jack Powers Fundraiser set for July 21 in Bay Ridge

July 16, 2021 Andy Furman
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Al Paturzo, the legendary Susan Wagner High School football coach – he’s New York City’s all-time winningest football coach with 231 wins and six PSAL titles – is lending his support to the Jack Powers Scholarship Fund, set for Wednesday, July 21st (1-5 pm).

Jack Powers was a local Bay Ridge athlete who was a roommate with Paturzo at St. Mary of The Plains College in Kansas (1964-68) where Paturzo was a four-year starter. Jack was a popular teacher at Tottenville High School on Staten Island, where a scholarship in his name is awarded each year to a deserving graduate.

A large turnout of Bay Ridge athletes who participated in the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, CHSAA, PSAL, CYO and PAL is expected – the annual fundraiser is a gathering of local legends at The Salty Dog, 75th Street and 3rd Avenue in Bay Ridge.

Keith Williams, the former Bishop Loughlin basketball star who had left the basketball program at the University of Cincinnati has reversed course for the 2021-22 season.

In April, he declared for the NBA Draft and said he signed with an agent. Two months later, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer, Williams reversed course and entered the NCAA’s transfer portal.

Williams played four seasons at the University of Cincinnati, but because of the coronavirus pandemic all players were granted an extra year of eligibility. Williams is now eligible to play at any program.

Last season, he averaged 14.3 points and 2.5 assists per game.

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Taking a peek in the Scholastic Roundup (e) mailbag:

From former LIU Athletic Director, Jerry Donner after reading about Digger Phelps: “One of the few great moments in New York City modern basketball history. Even with St. John’s and their great teams of the ’60- ‘90s, the petty divisiveness among the schools thwarted any efforts to bring back basketball to the mecca of college basketball.

“Today Fordham languishes in the bottom of the Atantic-10; Manhattan had small bursts and Iona a perennial MAAC Champion, still cannot get it back, just to cite a few.”

Donner had some thoughts on the NCAA’s new NIL ruling (Name, Image and Likeness): “It will be a further death blow to the Mid and lower major (schools). Institutions will be utilizing their resources to invest in players. It will no doubt end up as a ‘recruiting tool.’ The rich will get richer.”

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Ike Pollack, the Lafayette High basketball captain in 1966 admits he, “messed up.”
He says: “I was inaccurate about a few things. Carl (Oisk’s) no-hitter,” he writes, “was on a Saturday against the Giants. The next day I went to the game versus the Giants on a Sunday with my uncle. I looked all this up because I knew the no-hitter was against the Giants. Why would they be playing the Reds during the same weekend?

“It was the following Saturday, the 19th, when the Little League went to the Reds game (in Ebbets Field) and I was ‘robbed’ of catching a Frank Robinson home run.”

More Scholastic Roundup email:

“Thank you for writing that wonderful article about my cousin, Al Ferrara. We knew as kids that Kicky would make it to the Big Leagues one day. And we were right,” said Lawrence Venturato.

“I liked the column on Mitch Buonaguro,” writes former Sheepshead Bay and Staten Island CC star Hank Lam. “By the way,” he adds, “Rico Petrocelli was a neighbor of mine growing up. We lived adjacent to the PS 206 schoolyard where we all knew he was going to be a Major League baseball player. He also was a first-team All-City basketball player in the New York Post (1961) having played only a year of high school ball. We both graduated from Sheepshead Bay in ’61,” said Lam, who still officiates high school basketball.

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Marc Chapman on Eric (Rock) Eisenberg: “I played a couple of years for “Rock” at the Manhattan Beach Jewish Center. An amazing coach and motivator. Took us to play in a tournament in Montreal. I think he used his own money. Also, he used to get us in to Knick games. I think he had connections. One of the greatest men I have ever had the privilege to know.”

Barry Neuberger, the new Athletic Director at Yeshiva of Flatbush adds: “Rock also coached Duane Martin, who starred at NYU before becoming an actor. ‘Rock’ was on our staff, too with the NYU Violets. One of the greatest Brooklyn guys, ever, with a gigantic heart. I often told people that if you were stuck at Kennedy Airport with no one to call and no way to get home, Rock would come and get you.”

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Steve Carp, former sports writer for the Brooklyn Graphic, Las Vegas Review Journal and now Senior Editor for Gaming Today had some comments on the Lafayette High Coaching Tree: “Arthur (Stretch) Graham transferred from Oral Roberts University to San Jose State in 1979,” he writes, “and helped the Spartans win the PCAA Tournament in Anaheim, Calif., to send them to the NCAA Tournament. His Lafayette teammate, Ron Chisholm was also on that SJSU team.”

David Vance, former General Manager of the Kentucky Colonels in the ABA, and later General Manager at several racetracks nationwide chimes in from his Oklahoma City home on Roosevelt Chapman: “Some amazing talent came out of Brooklyn. I had a friend in college who went to Boys High and he swore the cheerleaders all came out in pre-game and dunked. When I laughed, he said, ‘Okay, couple of the girls could only touch the rim.’

“His name—Steve (Stinky) Stein.”

And finally, a beauty from Lenny Schlein: “Your articles bring back such great memories for me. I was close to the Lafayette baseball team (with Peter Falcone) that won the city title at Yankee Stadium. My close friend Scott Widell (RIP) was on that team. I ran into Peter years later on a road trip in St. Louis when he was on the Mets. It was so cool seeing an old schoolmate on the field. I ended up sitting behind the Mets dugout in old Busch Stadium on a Sunday with 50k plus in attendance. It was also cap day. Haven’t thought about that in so long. Thanks.”

Andy Furman is a Fox Sports Radio national talk show host. Previously, he was a scholastic sports columnist for the Brooklyn Eagle. He may be reached at: [email protected] Twitter: @AndyFurmanFSR

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