Michael Cleary

Michael Cleary

Organization: Men's Lacrosse and Football
Year: 1985
Years Played: 1970-73, 1970-72

A pioneer of sorts, Michael J. Cleary was a major part of the largest athletics expansion in Kean history. A member of the school's first-ever lacrosse team in the spring of 1970, he was also a charter member of the school's football program, which began play that autumn.

A four-year letter winner in lacrosse, Cleary was a standout defenseman from 1970 through 1973, becoming the first Kean player to be named as a first-team All-Knickerbocker Conference honoree.

Cleary was also a three-year starter at tackle for the football team from 1970 through 1972, helping to lead the fledgling squad to a solid 4-2 record in its initial campaign in 1970.

Besides lacrosse and football, Cleary played basketball for the 1969-1970 Squires (now Cougars).

Cleary was involved in a bevy of other activities, serving as a member of the Athletic Board in 1972, sports editor of the Memorabilia in 1972 and 1973, and as sports editor of The Independent from 1971 through 1973.

Since graduating, Cleary has remained very active in the Kean athletic department. He served as an assistant lacrosse coach from 1979 through 1992 and as an assistant football coach in the early 1980s. He has also served as a member of the Hall of Fame selection committee.

Cleary earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history in 1973.