Black On Campus
Higher Education and the African American Experience

(Not So) Wordless Wednesday: NCAA B-Ball Pioneers

March 24th, 2009 by Ajuan Mance

Many thanks to Sean at Tullycraft News for calling my attention to this wonderful and historic photograph. This photo was taken on March 19, 1966, a day that marked a turning point in NCAA men’s basketball. If you saw the 2006 film that told the story of this team, then you already know 1)¬†that in 1966, Texas Western College (now University of Texas at El Paso) defeated the University of Kentucky in the NCAA final, and 2)that this marked the first time that a team with an all African American starting lineup won the Division I college hoops final.

The Texas Western starting five consisted of Bobby Joe Hill, Harry Flournoy, Nevil Shed, David Lattin, and Willie Worsley. The final score was Texas 72 – Kentucky 65.


Posted by Ajuan Mance

Posted in African Americans, Black History, Black men, Black Students, Higher Education, race

7 Responses

  1. Villager

    I have this photo on my blog’s sidebar in a feature called ‘Village Heroes’. The movie about them was remarkable…

    peace, Villager

  2. Stan

    Remarkable changes have come to the United States since 1966. This photo is a wonderful reminder.

  3. Sukhmandir Kaur

    Don’t think I’ve seen the movie. But the rest is history. Thankfully the world is getting to be a better place insome ways! Happy WW

  4. Mojo

    I never saw the movie, and honestly I’m not all that big a basketball fan (shh.. around here that’s bordering on heresy) so I wasn’t terribly familiar with the story. At first I was a little surprised that it took until 1966 for this to come about. You’d think it would have happened by accident at some point if nothing else. But I suppose 1966 wasn’t all that far removed from George Wallace standing at the gates and other similar displays of ignorance. So maybe it’s not as surprising as all that after all.

  5. DNLee

    Happy (not so) wordless wednesday. Will you be participating in the Diversity in Science Carnival – women history month?

    Deadline is march 25 at midnight. I’m writing mine tomorrow.

  6. SjP

    :>( The picture is gone, but I have seen it before. Wonderful depiction of all facets of our history. Much obliged for giving it recognition.

  7. Ajuan Mance

    So glad you all dropped by! Hope you come back next Wednesday. I’ll have another great image from African American history.

    SjP, thanks for the “heads up” about the photo. I’ll look into that. For some reason it’s showing up on my screen, maybe because I’m the administrator…