Behind the scenes of Iona men’s basketball



Junior Omorede Rainey has been a team manager of Iona men’s basketball since his freshman year.

Joseph Agius, Staff Writer

When you look at organizations across the country, whether that be on the collegiate or professional level, there’s always a tremendous amount of effort that goes in the background to propel the product that we consume as fans.

Iona men’s basketball Team Manager Omorede Rainey knows all about the behind-the-scenes action. He decided to make the transition from playing basketball back in high school to the position of team manager.

“My coach said we have a spot to be a manager,” Rainey said. “I considered it because I wanted to stay close to the game. So I became a manager, I then continued it throughout high school and ended up at Iona.”

As sports fans, some of us may be curious about what goes on behind the scenes. Rainey explained his full day routine for every game day.

“The typical day for me is to make sure everything is ready for shoot around in the morning,” Rainey said. “Then prepare the pregame meal and after we make sure the jerseys, waters and other equipment are ready to go for game time. Then we are on the floor rebounding 90 minutes before the game.”

At the end of game, the crew makes sure everything is ready to go for the next game. The team’s struggles have been no secret to Gael Nation. The standard has been set for the past four years where the team has won the conference title along with coinciding NCAA tournament berths.

When the victories mount year after year, a target forms on their backs. The other teams in the conference circle this sport as a barometer for their conference championship aspirations and the Gaels have to be poised for every teams’ best shot.

Sometimes struggles can lead to a bit of turmoil off the court. Rainey explained how the team is dealing with the adversity.

“We will always continue to fight no matter what,” Rainey said. “Our goal is succeeding for coach Cluess and try to bring Iona its five peat for coach.”

Different situations and positions in life can leave us with valuable lessons to gain. Rainey gave some comments on what he has taken from the team manager position.

“Lessons I’ve learned from my experience is to give it your all each day,” Rainey said. “I’ve also been blessed with the opportunity to learn from the staff. They’ve groomed me into a better individual and push me to work hard each day.”

The absence of Head Coach Tim Cluess has had an effect on the team, but they still are fighting to make him proud. Associate Head Coach Tra Arnold has been holding down the fort the best way he can.

Despite the struggles, this team seems to be in high spirits and their goals seem mutual. There is no evidence of a divisive locker room and with the team’s most recent wins against conference rivals Quinnipiac, 73-52, and Fairfield, 78-54, it looks as if they are getting back on the right track with seven games remaining.