Wednesday, May 13, 2009

More Fallen G's

Thought I'd stay with the fallen G theme this week. This here is Ralph Beard, a star 1940's hoopster for Kentucky who passed in November of 2007.

By all accounts Beard was a baller who should be remembered amongst the pioneer greats from the post-war hoops era. Unfortunately Beard was a grizzly bear who stayed on his hustle, getting caught up in the City College of New York point-shaving scandal that engulfed college hoops in the early 1950's. The Repercussions were extreme, to put it milder than Hunt's Ketchup.

Besides the many ballers like Beard who were blacklisted, powerhouse teams such as C.C.N.Y., N.Y.U. and L.I.U. gave up D-I hoops. The N.I.T. began to wane in dominance, and New York City in general lost its central status in college ball.

Beard obviously wasn't too happy with the outcome, giving this powerfully poetic quote to the Tampa Tribune in 1999, "“I loved this game. It isn’t like losing one of my kids. It isn’t like losing my wife, Bettye. It isn’t like going blind. But I’m telling you what — it will be with me until they hit me in the face with that first spade full of dirt — because basketball was my life.”

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