Fr. Kevin Mullen, OFM, provincial minister of the Holy Name Province, joined with athletic directors from Siena College and St. Bonaventure University Monday to announce that the trophy awarded to the victor of the annual men's basketball game between the two schools would be renamed to honor Br. Ed Coughlin, OFM, who died July 30 following complications from heart surgery.
"It's a great tradition," Mullen announced. "I had the privilege of talking to both athletic directors, chairs of the boards, and to both presidents, and at the request of Holy Name Province we would like to rename the Franciscan Cup the Brother Ed Coughlin Franciscan Cup."
Coughlin earned his bachelor's degree from St. Bonaventure and returned to the University in the late 1970s, working several assignments including serving twice as director of the college's Franciscan Institute, overseeing the research program's academic course offerings and publications, and working on the summer faculty. In 1996, he was named provincial secretary of the Holy Name Province of the Order of Friars Minor.
Br. Ed, as he was known across both campuses, was appointed the 11th president of Siena College in November 2014 and inaugurated in a campus ceremony in October 2015. During his five years at Siena, he oversaw additions to academic programming and gains in enrollment, marketing, fundraising and facility enhancement. Coughlin served on the Board of Trustees at both Siena and St. Bonaventure over the course of his career.
"This is a fitting tribute to Brother Ed who was a significant part of both Siena's and St. Bonaventure's histories," said Siena Vice President and Director of Athletics John D'Argenio. "While there are many commonalities between the two Franciscan schools; he will be looked upon as the person who pulled the thread through both communities to connect all of us. Br. Ed had a competitive spirit and wanted to see the teams succeed in competition, but he was driven more by the value that our student athletes should be respected and appreciated for their abilities beyond their sport. He believed it was our responsibility to assist in their overall development"
The inaugural game for the "Brother Ed Coughlin Cup" will be contested November 12 at the Times Union Center in Albany.