Providence College basketball had reached its lowest ebb in the modern era when fate crossed the rising stars of Rick Pitino and Billy Donovan. A player who watched more basketball than he played in his first two seasons, Donovan caught the Pitino fire and blazed a two-year path that almost brought the NCAA Championship trophy to Providence. A two-time team MVP, Donovan saved his best for last. With the advent of the three-pointer came opportunity for the underdeveloped and undersized point guard to shine. His senior year, Donovan led the Friars to a fourth place BIG EAST finish, the best ever, and a magic carpet ride to the NCAA Final Four. He was the Southeast Regional MVP and a Honorable Mention All-American.
Donovan was drafted by the Utah Jazz in the 3rd round (68th overall) of the 1987 NBA Draft. He waswaived after the preseason and played briefly for the Wyoming Wildcatters of the Continental Basketball Association. He then signed a 1 year contract with the New York Knicks, coached by Pitino. Donovan averaged 2.4 points and 2.0 assists over 44 career games.