Former St. Joe's and Villanova basketball star now sizzles on the grill

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Thursday, March 4, 2021

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Former St Joe's and Villanova star Marvin O'Connor had a sizzling shot during his playing days, but these days, the Big 5 hall of famer does his sizzling on the grill.

O'Connor co-owns Fresh Works, a sandwich shop in the Point Breeze section of Philadelphia, where there is Big 5 flavor up and down the menu.

"Obviously, I have to go with this Rasul Butler combo, the Buffalo chicken cheesesteak with the waffle fries," O'Connor said.

His favorite sandwich on the menu was named after the former LaSalle star who has since passed away.

"It takes you down memory lane," O'Connor said.

There are also smoothies nicknamed after the mascots, starting with the Saint Joe's Hawk. And there's a mural featuring some of the best to ever play in the city, including O'Connor, who started at Villanova before transferring to Saint Joe's where he finished his college career.

The former guard will still break bread with guys like Mark Macon, Lionel Simmons, Nate Blackwell, and Donnie Carr who have stopped by.

"It's all good. The edge is always there," O'Connor said about their on-court rivalry. "They are lucky I don't charge them a little extra."

O'Connor took a shot by opening this sandwich shop but the timing unfortunately was not great. They opened last March at the beginning of the pandemic.

"It's been tough, but the support has been overwhelming. The people who travel to come here to get a bite to eat is phenomenal. We appreciate the love," he said.