July 6, 1998
Former Harlem Globetrotter Marcus Haynes is the only Black College graduate included in this year's list of electees into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Haynes joins NBA legend Larry Bird, veteran Rochester Royal and Boston Celtics star Arnie Risen, longtime NBA mentor Alex Hannum, University of Texas women's coach Jody Conradt, and Yugoslavian coach Aleksandar Nikolic as inductees into the Hall.
Hall of Fame Photo
The newly-elected Hall of Famers will officially be enshrined on October 2, when the Hall of Fame holds its annual Enshrinement Ceremony in Springfield, Massachusetts, the birthplace of basketball.
Bird, Haynes, Conradt and Nikolic were all elected in their first year of eligibility. Hannum and Risen had previously been presented to the Honors Committee. Conradt was a nominated from the Women's Screening Committee, Risen from the Veteran's Committee and Nikolic from the International Committee.
Widely regarded as the world's finest ballhandler during his 40-plus year career in basketball spent with the Harlem Globetrotters (1947-53, 1972-79) and the Magicians (1953-72, 1981-1983), Haynes enjoyed international fame as a basketball entertainer and athlete. A native of Sand Springs, Oklahoma, Haynes' basketball career began at Booker T. Washington High School where he led the school to a high school national championship in 1941 and was named a Second Team scholastic All-America that season. Haynes then starred collegiately at Langston University (1942-46), where he was a four-time All-State, All-Conference and team MVP selection. Haynes led Langston in scoring all four years and led the university to a 112-3 record, a mark that included a 59-game winning streak.
The acrobatic Haynes caught the attention of Abe Saperstein, owner of the Harlem Globetrotters in 1946, during a game in which Langston defeated the Globetrotters, 74-70. Following graduation, Haynes joined the Globetrotters and starred for the team when it defeated the George Mikan-led Minneapolis Lakers in 1948 (61-59 before 17,823 at Chicago Stadium) and in 1949 (49-45 before 21,866 fans). In a four-decade career, Haynes played in over 12,000 games, traveled over four million miles and entertained fans in 97 countries around the globe. His dribbling style would confuse and confound opponents and became one of the Globetrotters' most potent offensive weapons. In 1953, due to a contractual disagreement with Saperstein, Haynes left the Globetrotters and started his own team, the Magicians. He toured with the Magicians for 18 years before rejoining the Globetrotters as player/coach in 1972. Haynes has been elected into five Halls of Fame, including NAIA (1985), Jim Thorpe (1993) and Langston University (1995). Although the Hall of Fame has elected persons with Harlem Globetrotter affiliations (Abe Saperstein, Wilt Chamberlain, Pop Gates, Connie Hawkins), Haynes is the first Globetrotter player elected into the Hall of Fame.