Credit: Dawn Anderson
It’s likely that 10, 15, or even 25 years from now, references to 2008-‘09 will still be commonplace in the record books for MIT men’s basketball.
Individually and as a team, the Engineers rewrote 26 records this season. Senior guard and cocaptain Jimmy Bartolotta (above) set new marks for career points (2,279) and career steals (184), and cocaptain Bradley Gampel ‘09 racked up the most assists in a season (207) and steals in a season (80). The team’s 21 wins also tied an Institute record.
And for the first time in the basketball program’s 108-year history, MIT received a berth in the NCAA Division III tournament, courtesy of its first-ever NEWMAC conference championship. One ESPN columnist described MIT as “the best Cinderella story of March Madness this year.”
A stunning 73-68 upset of nationally ranked Rhode Island College in the first-round game added more luster to an already historic season, but unfortunately, it would be MIT’s final win. Despite a hard-fought battle in their second game, the Engineers fell to Farmingdale State, 67-61, to end the season.
Bartolotta–who double-majored in management science and physics–was named an Academic All-American and the D3Hoops National Player of the Year. He also won the coveted Jostens Trophy, which honors the most outstanding men’s and women’s Division III basketball players of the year.