What’s a Jasper?

Br. Jasper brought baseball and the 7th inning stretch to Manhattan

The unique nickname of the Manhattan College athletic teams, the Jaspers, comes from one of the College's most memorable figures, Brother Jasper of Mary, FSC, who served at the College in the late 19th century.

Br. Jasper brought the then little-known sport of baseball to Manhattan College and became the team's first coach. Since Br. Jasper was also the prefect of discipline, he supervised the student fans at Manhattan College baseball games. During one particularly hot day, Br. Jasper noticed the students were becoming restless during the seventh inning of a close game. To relieve the tension, Br. Jasper called time-out and told the students to stand up and stretch for a few minutes until the game resumed.

Since Manhattan College annually played the New York Giants baseball team in the late 1880s and into the 1890s at the Polo Grounds, the Manhattan College practice of the “seventh inning stretch” spread into the major leagues, where it has now become a time-honored custom practiced by millions of fans annually!

Read a Wall Street Journal article about the origins of the Jasper nickname. 

Brother Jasper and Baseball Team

Above: Br. Jasper and the 1886 Manhattan College baseball team