Men's Basketball

1963 Men’s Basketball Team Gets Full Length Documentary

Loyola University Chicago Archives and Special CollectionsThe 1963 Loyola men's basketball team poses with its national championship trophy.

The 1963 Loyola men’s basketball team is returning to the spotlight in a documentary focused on its championship run and the hardships the team faced along the way, Loyola Athletics and O’Malley Creadon Productions announced Wednesday morning. 

Award-winning documentary team Christine O’Malley and Partick Creadon began production of the film in summer of 2019, just a year after the Rambler’s Cinderella run to the Final Four in 2018. 

That run and team, led by head coach Porter Moser and highlighted by team chaplain Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt BVM, is responsible for bringing the story and significance of the 1963 team back, according to producers Creadon and O’Malley.

O’Malley — who was the producer of “Taylor Swift: Miss Americana” — is hoping to debut the film later this year but a release date hasn’t been set yet. Distribution is also still being worked on by O’Malley Creadon productions. 

“The journey of the 1963 Ramblers is not only a great sports story, it’s a relatively unknown one,” O’Malley said in a press release. “The sports films we’re drawn to tend to be the ones that also examine the broader culture surrounding the story.”

The 1963 team, coached by George Ireland, was a team many didn’t expect to win a championship. The starting lineup consisted of four black players which broke the color barriers that existed in college sports at the time.

“As a university, we’ve always taken great pride in the accomplishments of the 1963 Ramblers and the role they played in the civil rights struggles of the 1960’s,” Loyola Athletic Director Steve Watson said in a press release.  “At a time when these struggles continue throughout the world, we believe this story will resonate with people from all walks of life.”

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