(Seton Hall University)
10th pick in 1948 BAA draft. . . NBA championship with Rochester Royals, 1951. . . Led the league in free-throw percentage, 90.4 in 1952. . . NBA All-Star, 1952-56. . . NBA Most Valuable Player, 1953. . .Inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1987. . .Born June 4, 1921, in Brooklyn, New York. ...
Robert "Bobby" Wanzer was born June 4, 1921 in Brooklyn, New York. Wanzer attended Ben Franklin High School where he was a standout basketball player who could do it all, but was especially known for his tenacious defense and ability to contain the opposing teams' guards. An All-City selection on two state championship teams in 1940 and 1941, Wanzer attended Seton Hall where after a year on the freshmen basketball team, he led Seton Hall to a 16-2 record.
After his sophomore season at Seton Hall, Wanzer enlisted in the Marine Corps where he participated in the occupation and defense of Guam in late 1944. Wanzer served in the Marine Corps from 1943 to 1946 before being honorably discharged as a Corporal.
After World War II, Wanzer returned to Seton Hall to finish out his college career. Seton Hall later named Wanzer to their All-Time Basketball team and retired his number 8 jersey.
Wanzer was selected 10th in the 1948 draft by the Rochester Royals of the National Basketball League/Basketball Association of America (later called the National Basketball Association). Wanzer spent his entire career with the Royals. Wanzer and fellow Hall of Famer Bob Davies were a stunning backcourt duo often mentioned alongside the Cousy-Sharman tandem. Wanzer helped bring the 1951 NBA Championship to Rochester. Wanzer was a two-time All-NBA Second Team selection and appeared in five All-Star Games. Wanzer also served as a player/coach for the final two years of his career before retiring when the Royals moved to Cincinnati at the end of the 1958 season.
While living in New York and wanting to get back into basketball, Wanzer became the very first coach of the small Division III St John's Fisher College in 1962. During his 24-year tenure as Head Coach, Wanzer had 15 winning seasons compiling a 311-239 record. Coach Wanzer also served as Men's Athletic Director and coached the golf team.
Wanzer was inducted into the National Basketball Hall of Fame in 1987 and into the St John Fisher College Sports Hall of Fame in 1992. Bobby Wanzer currently resides in Pittsford, NY.