In the late 1960’s the University of Louisville basketball team was coached by John Dromo and during this era one of the most notable athletes to come from the Cards was Louisville native, Henry Bacon.
Bacon would go on to bridge the gap between Dromo and basketball hall of fame coach, Denny Crum, but before all that Bacon was a star at Male high school. A natural athlete Bacon proved himself a viable talent while with the Cards after inking a deal proceeding his high school graduation.
A hometown athlete Bacon was so solid that soon enough he had pro scouts eyeing him. In the early 70’s professional basketball was a bit of a battle for position in its own right, with the National Basketball Association (NBA) and American Basketball Association (ABA) both jockeying for position.
Two separate leagues which both prided themselves on having the greater stars and athletes. Ironically Bacon was impressive enough that he was drafted by both leagues, first the NBA’s Golden State Warriors then the ABA’s Memphis Pros in 1972.
Eventually, Bacon would go to the ABA but not in Memphis, rather suiting up with the San Diego Conquistadors.
Despite playing only a season in the pros Bacon still stands as a testament to a hometown athlete that was not only born and bred in the Derby City but became a star here to. And, in a time when integrity and sports too often doesn’t mesh it’s good to think about when it does and when it did, such is the case with Henry Bacon and that is what makes him a sports legend of the Ville.
Image courtesy of Helmets and Hoops