May 14, 2008
PHILADELPHIA - Tim Klarich has been selected to serve as the next Saint Joseph's University Hawk mascot, beginning with the 2007-08 academic year. He becomes the 31st student to represent the University as its men's basketball mascot, in the 52 years of one of college basketball's most famous traditions.
Klarich, a senior business administration major, was chosen after the selection process that consisted of interviews with an athletic department committee that included head basketball coach Phil Martelli.
A native of Philadelphia and graduate of St. Joseph's Prep, Klarich has served as a student worker in the SJU Men's Basketball office and as a team manager for the past few years. He is involved with the American Marketing Association and has volunteered with the Gesu Reading Enrichment Program and Saint Joseph's Hand in Hand project.
"Tim was selected from a pool of worthy candidates who displayed passion and true love for their University. The process was challenging, yet rewarding, with the quality of the candidates," said Martelli. "Tim will uphold the traditions and the spirit that The Hawk exhibits to many."
Klarich replaces Jim Miller, who served as the mascot for the past two seasons. He is also a Hawk "legacy", as his brother Steve was The Hawk for two seasons from 2001 to 2003.
One of the most renowned mascots in all of college athletics, The Hawk is a rarity among mascots because it travels to every game, home or away. The student who serves as the mascot has been the recipient of an endowed scholarship since 1992, and also performs the responsibilities of a team manager. Recognized by many publications over the years as the nation's top collegiate mascot, The Hawk is known for flapping its wings continuously during an entire game.
Jim Brennan originated the idea for the Saint Joseph's Hawk during the 1954-55 season, and made his debut as The Hawk on January 4, 1956, in a 69-56 SJU win over La Salle at The Palestra. In 2005-06, Saint Joseph's celebrated the golden anniversary of the mascot.