At YU, we like to work hard so we can play hard, and lately the Office of Alumni Affairs (in conjunction with the Athletic Department) has been ramping up their efforts to reach out to alumni.

Homecoming 2011, on Sunday, September 18, will feature sports clinics for boys and girls in basketball, baseball, volleyball, soccer, and fencing. There will be batting cages to practice swings, pitching clinics on the portable mound where baseball lovers can learn how to maximize their pitching talent, volleyball hitting and receiving drills, and other training and techniques taught by our superb student athletes and YU athletic staff.

Joe Bednarsh, Director of Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation, said, “I think the athletics component of the Homecoming event will be a fantastic way for alumni to see how far we’ve come, and for their children to have a chance to participate in sports they may not have had the opportunity to play. It’s a wonderful thing to expose young people to the idea that observant Jews can compete at a high level without having to compromise their beliefs. We take for granted sometimes that these activities and facilities are available to us, but for a young boy or girl, it can be a remarkable experience to play on a college court or play alongside college players. Who knows, maybe one day these kids will be the future superstars for the Maccabees!”

Earlier this summer, the coaches of the fall sports teams at YU – including men’s and women’s basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, and men’s wrestling – sent a letter to alumni who participated in their respective sports during their time at YU, inviting them to catch up with their alma mater and their former team by attending games during the year and informing them about the latest team updates. For a full season’s schedule of games, visit The mailing also included a decal with the new Maccabee logo.

On December 18, when the YU Macs take on the St. Joseph College Monks for a home game at Max Stern Athletic Center, all alumni are invited to bring their families to an exciting YU tailgate party before the big game. The court will be open for children to enjoy a meet-and-greet with the Maccabee athletes before they warm up to play St. Joseph. Lunch will be served along with a screening of the new video profiling the history of the Macs’ basketball program.

Bednarsh explains, “One of my goals when I took over as Athletic Director was to reengage the athletic alumni. Athletic competition fosters a special connection to both the teams and University, and I truly believe that former players still have that love for their sport and alma matter. It will be a wonderful experience for past players to see the new crop of student-athletes and for the current team members to learn about the history of their team from some of the pioneers. I am looking forward to reconnecting with our past athletes.”

For those YU alumni and friends who were scheduled to cheer on the Mets as they took on the Atlanta Braves at Jewish Heritage Day at Citi Field on Sunday, August 28, we regret the cancellation due to Hurricane Irene. We hope you will join us for this event next year.


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