CLEVELAND — Any discussion about the history of Cleveland State men's basketball has to include the name Ken "Mouse" McFadden.
The native of New York City was the driving force behind the Vikings' trip to the Sweet 16 in 1986. He would lead Cleveland State to three postseason appearances during his career and is one of only three Vikings men's basketball players to have their number retired at the Wolstein Center, joining Franklin Edwards and Norris Cole.
McFadden is a resident of Northeast Ohio and currently works for Cuyahoga County. He and his former teammates are keeping a very close eye on this year's Vikings squad, who are just one win away from a berth in the NCAA Tournament.
"It's very exciting for us," McFadden said about the success of the current edition of the Vikings in a Zoom interview on Tuesday. "All of the alumni are on GroupText and so we're going back and forth all night long about this play and that play. I'm always texting coach (Vikings Head Coach Dennis Gates) telling him how great a job he's doing."
What advice would "Mouse" give this Vikings team as they get ready to face Oakland tonight with a trip to the NCAA Tournament at stake? "I would tell the guys to keep doing what you're doing. Follow the game plan for tonight, play hard, leave it all out on the court and you will never have any regrets."
We asked Mouse about his memories of the 1986 Sweet 16 run, if he stays in touch with his former coach Kevin Mackey, thoughts on current CSU coach Dennis Gates, and much more. You can watch the full interview in the player above.
More Vikings coverage:
- Cleveland State playing to punch its ticket to March Madness on Tuesday
- Cleveland State rallies to beat Milwaukee 71-65 to advance to Horizon League Championship
- Cleveland State forward Al Eichelberger re-lives improbable 3-pointer that helped Vikings advance in Horizon League Tournament, talks March Madness
- Cleveland State holds off Purdue Fort Wayne 108-104 in triple overtime to advance to Horizon League men's basketball semifinals
Editor's Note: Dave 'Dino' DeNatale and Nick Camino had more on CSU's win over Milwaukee in the Horizon League Semifinals in the player below. Video is from March 8, 2021