|Hometown:||East Providence, RI|
Kevin J. Rooney '78
Hometown: East Providence, RI
Year Inducted: 1986
A member of the 1976 Ivy championship football team, All-Ivy defensive tackle Kevin J. Rooney typified the cliché of a "gentle giant." The man who was responsible for sixty tackles (thirty-seven unassisted, 23 assisted) his senior year, maintains that the best part of playing football at Brown was the team spirit. - "The success we shared in the mid-seventies was a team effort. Being part of that team gave me the most enjoyment." The East Providence native hadn't seriously considered playing football at Brown until Coach John Anderson gave him tickets to a Harvard-Brown game when Rooney was a high school senior. Rooney was piqued. "Being from the area, I was familiar with the former problems of Brown football," he recalled. "But when Coach Anderson gave me the tickets and I saw the type of decent football he was developing, I knew that I wanted to go to Brown." Those two tickets proved to be Brown's good fortune: Rooney quickly developed into one of the Bruins best defensive linemen. "Kevin is perhaps the best defensive tackle in the Ivy League," Anderson was quoted during Rooney's senior year. "He's strong, he plays with intensity, and he knows just one speed and that is full. He always gives 100 percent." Giving 100 percent was one of Rooney's hallmarks - even when he was battling a recurrent intestinal illness through high school and again his sophomore year at Brown - a year when he moved into the starting line-up and developed into one of the best linemen on the team. Rooney, who was All-East, All-New England, and All-Ivy (first team) his senior year, was honored with the War Memorial Award in 1977. He loved football so much that after Brown, he enrolled at McGill University in order to play one more season of college ball - a successful year, as it turned out. He was named the outstanding lineman in the Quebec/Ontario conference, played in the 1979 Can/Am Bowl, and was named to the All-Canadian Team. Today Rooney is a salesman, living in East Greenwich, Rhode Island.