Nation’s winningest high school basketball team to fold as school closes its doors
St. Anthony High School in Jersey City, N.J., home of one of the nation’s most storied basketball programs, will close at the end of the academic year. The decision was made Wednesday by the Archdiocese of Newark, which decided fundraising efforts would be unable to cover the gaps.
The Friars, under the direction of head coach Bob Hurley, have won 28 state championships, more than any other boy’s basketball program in the country. The school completed its eighth undefeated season last year. The Friars’ final game was a 64–61 loss to Hudson Catholic in the sectional title game last month.
The school has produced numerous high-profile Division-I players, such a Pitt’s Travon Woodall, Kansas’s Tyshawn Taylor and Florida’s Mike Rosario, as well as current Spurs forward Kyle Anderson. The team was also featured in the 2010 documentary The Street Stops Here and a 2005 book by Adrian Wojnarowski, The Miracle of St. Anthony. Showtime Sports is currently documenting Hurley and the program in weekly video segments, with the final installment set to premiere on Monday.
My most rewarding year was spent with Bob Hurley, Sisters, teachers and kids to write "The Miracle of St. Anthony." The school saved lives.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 5, 2017
Hurley, 69, was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2010 and is the father of current Arizona State head coach Bobby Hurley and Rhode Island head coach Dan Hurley. Bobby also attended St. Anthony’s before going on to Duke and the NBA.
St. Anthony’s financial situation has been precarious for several years. In 2013, Hurley spearheaded a fundraising drive seeking $10 million to keep the school open. The situation became more dire this September, when the school’s board of trustees announced it would need between $10 million and $20 million by the end of the school year to keep the doors open.