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05/01/2007 6:44 PM ET
Willie Randolph to deliver commencement address at Fordham University on Saturday, May 19
Mets skipper to receive honorary doctorate; Daughter Ciara among graduating seniors; Manages Mets against Yanks later that afternoon
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NEW YORK -- New York Mets manager Willie Randolph will deliver the keynote address to the Class of 2007 at Fordham University's 162nd Commencement on Saturday, May 19, at 10 a.m. on the Rose Hill campus in the Bronx.

The University will also award an honorary doctorate of humane letters degree to Randolph. Randolph's daughter, Ciara, a Fordham College at Rose Hill student, will be among the graduating seniors. Randolph will skipper the Mets in a Subway Series clash against the Yankees later that afternoon at Shea Stadium in a busy and exciting day for the Randolph family.

Randolph, in his third season as Mets manager, who was hired as manager of the Mets in November 2004, also had an accomplished 18-year playing career, mostly with the New York Yankees. He played more games at second base than any other player in Yankees history, and was part of teams that won two World Series championships as a player and four more as a coach.

Randolph grew up in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn and the Pittsburgh Pirates selected him in the seventh round of the 1972 amateur draft. He spent 13 of his 18 seasons as a player with the Yankees, and also played for the Pirates, Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland Athletics, Milwaukee Brewers and finished his career with the Mets.

As a manager, Randolph guided the Mets to an 83-79 record in his rookie season, the first time the franchise had finished above .500 since 2001. In 2006, Randolph managed the Mets to a league-best 97-65 record and the National League East Division title. The team would eventually come within one game of reaching the World Series, losing the seventh game of the National League Championship Series to the eventual world-champion St. Louis Cardinals. Randolph has received numerous honors for his community service, including the Sportsman of the Year award by the March of Dimes, the Leadership Award by 100 Black Men and the Humanitarian Award by the Koby Mandell Foundation. Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz declared "Willie Randolph Day" in Brooklyn on June 9, 2005.

Details about commencement are available on the Fordham website. The main ceremony will be broadcast on WFUV-FM 90.7, and streamed live on the Internet at www.fordham.edu/media .

Founded in 1841, Fordham is the Jesuit University of New York, offering exceptional education distinguished by the Jesuit tradition to more than 15,600 students in its five undergraduate colleges and its six graduate and professional schools. It has residential campuses in the Bronx, Manhattan and Tarrytown, and the Louis J. Calder Center Biological Field Station in Armonk, N.Y.

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