On October 1, eight members of the Yale men’s basketball teams of 1962, 1963 and 1964 met at Payne Whitney Gymnasium for a reunion dinner.
The author was lucky enough to be in attendance, having watched those teams play as a youth growing up in New Haven. Some of the team members present were All-American Rick Kaminsky, highly successful Ivy Funds originator Dennis Lynch and Connecticut resident and star guard Bob Trupin.
The evening was composed of a very well-done slide show and talks to the crowd by Kaminsky, 93-year-old former head coach Joe Vancisin and myself.
The most predominant name that evening, not surprisingly, was Bill Bradley. Bradley almost committed to Yale but instead chose Duke and signed a national letter of intent. At the time, the Ivy League did not recognize national letters of intent and when Bradley’s father found out in mid-August that Duke might be put on probation due to some actions by their star, Art Heyman, Bradley switched from Duke to Princeton. Kaminsky spoke at length about how he hosted a very straight-laced Bradley for a weekend at Yale. He told some funny stories about the weekend and then noted that he has maintained a lifelong friendship with Bradley, against whom he had great duals both at Payne Whitney and Dillon Gymnasium at Princeton.
The Yale team went 13-1 in the Ivy League and beat Tennessee on the road over Christmas, also playing at national power Kentucky. Kaminsky was the leading scorer and they fell in the NCAA Tournament in overtime to highly regarding Wake Forest, 92-82, despite leading in the second half.
Vancisin retired from coaching at Yale in 1975 and was later inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. Kaminsky is a retired urologist in Houston. Lynch started the highly successful Ivy Funds. Dave Schumacher owned a business in New Haven and now resides in Cheshire and center Steve Goulding was an industrialist in the midwest. Dick Derby died in a car crash in September 1962.