The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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Remembering Torch Alumnus Howie Schwab

The ‘82 St. John’s University alumnus made a lasting impact on the sports community.
Photo Courtesy / Youtube Big Ten Network

ESPN personality, producer and St. John’s University graduate Howie Schwab passed away on April 20 at the age of 63.

During his time at St. John’s, Schwab worked for The Torch and WSJU radio. In a 2017 interview, he discussed his early work for ESPN and how he became the “ruler of research” at the “Worldwide Leader in Sports.” 

The Long Island native was the star of ESPN Network’s trivia show “Stump the Schwab. He worked at the network from 1987-2013 where he started in the research department before capturing the sports world with his on-air presence and incredible sports knowledge. 

Many media personalities sent their condolences online. College basketball analyst Dick Vitale shared the news through social media. 

“A dear friend who was invaluable to my career. I will miss all the late-night phone calls over the years and recently all the text messages since my vocal cord cancer problems. Howie was a fanatical sports lover. May he RIP,” Vitale shared over X.

“SportsCenter” also aired a tribute to Schwab during their Saturday morning show. Most of Schwab’s career was spent behind the scenes for ESPN, until “Stump the Schwab” aired in 2004. The trivia show hosted contestants with the final challenge of stumping “The Schwab,” who quickly became known for his encyclopedia-like sports knowledge. Schwab left ESPN in 2013 when he landed a job at Fox Sports as a writer and consultant for “Sports Jeopardy!” 

Former “SportsCenter” host Dan Patrick began his April 22 “Dan Patrick Show” with a heartfelt tribute to his “lifelong friend.” 

“Howie was sports google, before sports google,” Patrick said. “Google would have googled Howie Schwab. He’s the smartest guy I’ve ever met when it comes to sports knowledge, trivia and information” 

Over the weekend, many St. John’s community members sent their condolences through X as well. 

“Very sorry to hear of the passing of [Howie Schwab]. He was a great friend and supporter. I will miss getting his messages after every game we play. Thank you for always caring,” Women’s Basketball head coach Joe Tartamella wrote on X

The St. John’s Men’s Basketball official account also wrote about his passing. 

“Going to miss those ‘Go SJU’ tweets. Rest in peace. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends,” the team wrote through X

St. John’s Men’s Soccer also took to X to share their thoughts and prayers. 

“No bigger supporter of St. John’s than [Howie Schwab]. Going to be dearly missed. RIP.” 

Schwab encompassed a love for sports throughout his entire career and his knowledge will surely be missed.

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About the Contributor
Isabella Cautero
Isabella Cautero, Sports Editor
Isabella is a senior journalism major serving as the Sports Editor for The Torch. She is minoring in sport management. Outside of The Torch, she works as an academic tutor at the University Learning Commons. She likes to spend time with her friends, read, play with her dog and watch the New York Rangers or Yankees. On any given day you can find her listening to her favorite artists, Taylor Swift and Harry Styles. Isabella can be reached at [email protected].
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