Student Spotlight with Zack Rosen

Zack Rosen

Mark Stehle

Wharton senior Zack Rosen is the leading scorer on the Quaker basketball team, and is also tops in assists. He is the first player in Penn history to have more than 100 assists as a freshman, sophomore and junior.

GIVE-AND-GO: Wharton senior Rosen, 22, is the leading scorer on the Quaker basketball team, and is also tops in assists. He is the first player in Penn history to have more than 100 assists as a freshman, sophomore and junior.

NEW JERSEY DRIVE: Born and raised in New Jersey, Rosen was the co-valedictorian of Newark’s famed St. Benedict’s Preparatory School.

HAIL! PENNSYLVANIA: Schools with higher athletic profiles such as Iowa State, Villanova, George Washington, Stanford, Vanderbilt, Louisville and Seton Hall showed interest in Rosen, but he ultimately chose to attend Penn. Although not originally sold on the University, he now says Penn “has been a dream come true.”

NOBLE AND STRONG: “Looking back on it now,” Rosen says, “this should have been a much easier decision because this place is 100 percent for me.”

THEY GOT GAME: Over the years a collection of high school hoops stars have come from North Jersey. Rosen says the area produces outstanding players because of “really good coaching” and a high concentration of talent. “All the guys up there play together, in the summer, in gyms,” he says. “Somehow, someway, there’s always great competition so you’re always getting better playing against each other.”

MILK AND HONEY: Between his freshman and sophomore years at Penn, Rosen played on the United States Men’s Open Basketball Team at the 18th Maccabiah Games in Israel. “I fell in love with Israel,” he says. “The place is just unbelievable. We won a gold medal, which obviously added to the feeling that I have about the place.” 

THINKING MAN: Rosen says Wharton is “great” and “very, very challenging,” but if he could restart his freshman year, he would probably major in psychology. “I’ve always been interested in how the mind works and how people approach everyday life,” he says.

DEVILS’ DEN: The Quakers play at Duke on New Year’s Day. Rosen says he is really looking forward to the game, especially after they were “embarrassed” by the Blue Devils two years ago. “It’s what you signed up for,” he says of the Jan. 1 matchup. “It’s why you came here, for those kind of games.”

I WANNA BE LIKE STEVE: Rosen says his favorite basketball player is Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash, and “any little white guy that’s in the NBA.”

GAME POINT: After his college playing days are over, Rosen says he plans to “play basketball as long as I can, and then put this Wharton degree to work.”

Originally published on December 15, 2011