Patrick Aloysius Ewing Sr. (born August 5, 1962) is a Jamaican-American retired Hall of Fame basketball player and current assistant coach for the National Basketball Association's Orlando Magic. He played most of his career with the NBA's New York Knicks as their starting center and played briefly with the Seattle SuperSonics and Orlando Magic. Ewing was named as the 16th greatest college player of all time by ESPN. He won Olympic Gold Medals as a member of the 1984 and 1992 US Men's National Basketball teams. In a 1996 poll celebrating the 50th anniversary of the NBA, Ewing was selected as one of the 50 Greatest Basketball Players of All Time. On April 7, 2008 he was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame on September 5, 2008 along with former NBA coach Pat Riley and former Houston Rockets center, Hakeem Olajuwon. His number 33 was retired by the Knicks in 2003.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Ewing excelled at cricket and soccer. He was 11 years old when he arrived in the United States with his family, settling in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He learned to play basketball at Cambridge Rindge and Latin. In order to prepare for college, Ewing joined the MIT-Wellesley Upward Bound Program. Upward Bound is a federally-funded college-prep program for disadvantaged high school students. He went to Georgetown University in Washington, D.C..
Ewing, one of the most highly recruited freshmen ever, signed a letter of intent to accept to play for Coach John Thompson at Georgetown University. As a freshman during the 1981-1982 season, Ewing became one of the first college players to start and star on the varsity team as a freshman. While at Georgetown, he developed a habit of wearing a short sleeved t-shirt underneath his sleeveless jersey. This started a fashion trend among young athletes that lasts to this day. In the 1982 NCAA final against the University of North Carolina, Ewing was called for goaltending on the first five possessions of the first half, setting the tone for the Hoyas and making his presence felt. The Hoyas had a shot at winning the game until Fred Brown threw an infamous bad pass to James Worthy at the tail end of the game. In the 1983-84 season, Ewing and Georgetown took the NCAA title with an 84-75 win over the University of Houston. In Ewing's senior year of 1985, Georgetown was ranked number one in the nation and was heavily favored to beat unranked Villanova in the title game, but the Wildcats shot a record 78.6 percent from the floor (22 for 28) to upset the Hoyas 66-64. Ewing was one of the best college basketball players of his era, as Georgetown reached the championship game of the NCAA tournament three out of four years. He was a first-team All-American.