Restani honored with new exhibit


Steven Rissotto ’20

The Kevin Restani Exhibit was recently unveiled in the Crusader Forum.

Steven Rissotto ’20, Editor-in-Chief

It’s been nearly 50 years since the 1970 Riordan varsity basketball team raised the West Catholic Athletic League trophy. The group of players was led by Kevin Restani, who was making quite a name for himself as an all-state hoops star.

Restani, known by many as an athlete who silently did his duties egoless, traveled five miles north to the University of San Francisco after he graduated from Riordan. Born and raised in San Francisco, the city was all the 6 foot 9 inch, 225-pound power forward knew.

In the 1974 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers selected Restani with the third pick in the third round, the highest selection for any Crusader alumnus, a record that still stands today. The journey took him through eight different NBA seasons with fourdifferent teams, most notably the Milwaukee Bucks.

Even after his last NBA game at age 30, Restani loved the game enough to continue playing basketball in Italy for eight more seasons. Sixteen seasons of professional basketball proved to be unsatisfying for Restani, as he kept reliving his sacred glory days until the week of his death in 2010 at the age of 58 due to a heart attack.

In January of 2018, Riordan announced that the brand-new, $800,000 basketball court would be named in his honor. The logo on the right-hand side of the court is designed with purple and gold lettering, which lights up the court just as Restani did during his time as a Crusader.

As the decade closes out, Riordan’s brotherhood has once again honored the late, great basketball legend in style. An exhibit with different artifacts and visual anecdotes was built in the hallway of the gym, where fans can pay tribute to and learn about the San Francisco prep hero.

The exhibit includes two different jerseys (Riordan and USF), photos, frames, and more. During night games, a light flickers on for a more visible satisfaction for the viewer. The attraction adds a historical element to a gym already filled with history of its own. After all, alumni will be the first ones to explain how little the set-up in the arena has changed.

Springtime will mark the 10th anniversary of Kevin Restani’s sudden death, and the new experience introduced is bound to give more long-awaited, and well deserved, attention to the fallen San Francisco icon.