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Richie Regan

Sport: Basketball

Born: November 30, 1930

Town: Newark

Richard Joseph Regan was born November 30, 1930 in Newark. Tall, wiry, quick and coordinated, he made a name for himself in the city’s CYO league and later earned All-State honors at West Side High. Few players in the country his age could rival Richie’s pinpoint passing. One of Richie’s boyhood heroes had been Seton Hall star Bob Davies, an All-American who led the Pirates to 43 straight victories between 1939 and 1941. In 1949, he followed in his idol's footsteps and enrolled at Seton Hall on a basketball scholarship.

Richie joined the varsity as a sophomore in 1950–51. The Pirates’ coach, John “Honey” Russell, was regarded as a basketball pioneer, having played with the powerhouse New York Celtics during the 1920s and 1930s. Richie’s job was to trigger the offense from the point. Tireless Walter Dukes took care of the inside scoring and rebounding. Junior forward Roy Belliveau provided scoring and rebounding at the forward position.

In Richie’s first two seasons, Seton Hall was one of the 12 colleges picked to play in the National Invitation Tournament across the river at Madison Square Garden. The 1951 NIT run ended against Brigham Young in the semifinals. In 1952, the Pirates fell in the opening round to La Salle.

The 1952–53 season ended on a more positive note. Seton Hall went 28–2 in the regular season and was the #2 seed in the NIT. After a first-round bye, the Pirates edged Niagara 79–74, then wiped out Manhattan College 74–56. In the final against St. John’s, Seton Hall won 58–46 and set an MSG attendance record in the process.

Richie finished his career with 1,167 points and 443 assists. In all, the Pirates were 80–12 when he was in the lineup and he was named an All-American. Richie’s final game as a collegian also took place in Madison Square Garden. Russell coached the East to victory and Richie was named MVP.


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