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St. Catharine alum Williams completes first year of Globe-trotting

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By SCC Sports Information

When a professional basketball team was formed in the 1920’s they called themselves the “Globetrotters”, although they basically just played a schedule in Illinois and Iowa. That title is now, however, quite appropriate as the Harlem Globetrotters do travel the world entertaining fans of all ages.

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And trotting the globe with the famous clowns of basketball is former St. Catharine College center Ervin Williams. The 2011 Patriot graduate is a member of the Washington Generals, the team that provides opposition, albeit losing opposition, every night.

Williams, a 6-9 New Jersey native, has now toured with the Generals for a year after a stint with the Cincinnati Slam in the Universal Basketball Association where he was named to the All-Rookie team in 2012. That past year has indeed been one of Globe-trotting for the affable Williams.

“I have been to Italy, France, England, Norway and Germany along with a lot of cities in the United States,” said Williams. “We were on the road from December to May playing five or six nights a week. I would say the places in the UK were my favorites.”

 Of course the games themselves are for the enjoyment of the fans who come to see the Globetrotters prevail each night over the Generals. But is there a chance for the underdogs to pull an upset over their famous opponents?

“We are not really supposed to talk about that,” replied the soft spoken Williams.

The Globetrotters have won over 13,000 games against the Generals who know their role each night. But that doesn’t keep Williams from some good natured ribbing from some of his buddies back at St. Catharine.  

“Yeah, we are always messing with him, asking if he has won any games this year,” said St. Catharine head coach J.T. Burton. “But really this is a great opportunity for Ervin.  From where he came from, without really having the guidance of a mom or dad growing up, to be grounded like he is with this job is just unbelievable.”

Williams calls Springfield home now when he gets a break from the road as he did for a couple weeks this month. He lives with some former St. Catharine teammates who are now on Burton’s coaching staff.

“I am encouraging him to go ahead and get his Master’s Degree now,” added Burton. “Of course his time with the Globetrotters won’t last forever.”

“Of course if I get a good offer (from one of the professional leagues in Europe) I would be interested in that,” Williams said. “But right now this is a good situation. I can see playing for three or four more years.”

Williams, whose travels will take him to South America in June for the first time, has a good idea of his career path after basketball. “I would like to coach and teach physical education. I would rather coach little kids rather than high school or college.”

Surely Williams will have some good stories to tell those young players of his days of trotting the globe.