Bobby Wanzer

Bobby Wanzer
Personal information
Born (1921-06-04)June 4, 1921
Brooklyn, New York
Died January 23, 2016(2016-01-23) (aged 94)
Pittsford, New York
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Listed weight 170 lb (77 kg)
Career information
High school Benjamin Franklin
(New York City, New York)
College Seton Hall (1942–1943, 1946–1947)
NBA draft 1948 / Round: 1 / Pick: 10th overall
Selected by the Rochester Royals
Playing career 1947–1957
Position Guard
Number 9
Career history
As player:
19471957 Rochester Royals
As coach:
19551959 Rochester / Cincinnati Royals
1963–1987 St. John Fisher
Career highlights and awards
Career BAA and NBA statistics
Points 6,924 (12.2 ppg)
Rebounds 1,979 (4.5 rpg)
Assists 1,830 (3.2 apg)
Stats at
Basketball Hall of Fame as player
College Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2006

Robert Francis "Bobby" Wanzer, also known as "Hooks" Wanzer (June 4, 1921 – January 23, 2016) was an American basketball player and coach.

A 6'0" guard, Wanzer played collegiately at Seton Hall University. After leading Seton Hall to a 16-2 record as a sophomore, Wanzer enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps. He made the All-Pacific Armed Forces all-star basketball team, and he participated in the occupation of Guam.[1]

Wanzer was selected by the Rochester Royals in 1947. Royals star Bob Davies was a Seton Hall coach and steered the star guard to the NBL contender. Initially a reserve behind Al Cervi and Red Holzman, Wanzer later teamed with Davies to form a potent backcourt for the day. The Royals were very successful 1947–1954, and their smaller stars, like Wanzer, were considered their biggest assets. With Wanzer, Rochester won the 1950–51 National Basketball Association (NBA) title.

Wanzer played his entire career with the Royals, retiring from play after the end of the 1957 season. He was a five-time All-Star with the Royals, made the All-NBA Second Team three consecutive times, and in the 1951–52 season, Wanzer became the first player to ever shoot over 90% from the free throw line in a season.[2] He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1987.

Wanzer would also coach the Royals as well. He was a player-coach for two years, and then (after the franchise moved to Cincinnati) coached for another season. His 1957–58 Cincinnati Royals were an NBA contender, but injuries stopped the team short. When star Maurice Stokes was permanently injured, Wanzer moved on early the following NBA season.

In 1962, Wanzer became the first coach at St. John Fisher College in Pittsford, New York. He coached there for 24 seasons and also served as the school's athletic director.[3] On August 17, 2007, Wanzer was inducted into the United States Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame.[1] Wanzer died on January 23, 2016 at his home in Pittsford, New York.[1][4]


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