Interview With Branson Wright: Back In the Day When Dwight Anderson Was Mike (Doc Trailer Added 6/6/11)

*Originally ran 10/22/09 repost because trailer dropped.*

First, I have to give a birthday shout out to my son Gaston. I love you son. I’m very proud of you.

Doing what I do, you come across like minds in the field. Branson Wright is one of those good brothas who has a passion for his writing. He’s shopping around the story of Dwight Anderson. This interview is a cautionary tale for those young and old who are on the fast track to squandering their talent–whatever that talent may be. Fathers, please get a hold of your sons and give them the support they need to survive in a world ready to stroke their ego, watch them fall and then spit them out with no remorse. Don’t think it won’t happen to your kid. Snakes come in all shapes, sexes, races and sizes. Kids must learn accountability at a very young age or they will fall off the cliff and never be heard from again. Things happen, but hopefully they’ll live to tell about it. I could sense the passion in Branson’s voice when doing this interview. Dwight Anderson affected him. He speaks sadly of his early and very unfortunate demise, but is also very happy that Dwight Anderson is alive to share his story. The trailer for “The Blur” is added at the bottom.

Michael Tillery: Branson give me a brief history of your career in sports journalism.

Branson Wright: Wow…well I came out of the University of Cincinnati in ’89. For an entire year, I couldn’t find a job. I worked at a shoe store. I freelanced at the Cincinnati Enquirer and the Cincinnati Post. I was on the grind until I got my first job in Lexington, North Carolina. I worked there for a year covering everything. ACC, high schools, Charlotte Hornets…everything…it was a great first job. I did so much. It was a two man staff. I got a lot of experience doing a lot of different things. I left there and went to Winston-Salem. I covered high schools and also got to cover some Winston-Salem State sports. I covered a reserve guard by the name of Stephen Smith–better known now as Stephen A. Smith.

MT: Wow. So you covered Big House Gaines?

BW: Yeah, yes I did. Stephen A’s nickname at Winston-Salem was The Pedestrian. Every time he went through the lane he walked! (We crack up). He’s always been the same. When he graduated from Winston Salem, he interned at the paper.

So I left Winston-Salem and went to Lima, Ohio and covered Ohio State basketball. That’s when Greg Simpson was the Player of the Year in Ohio. He was the LeBron James of Lima. This was in ’93-’94. In ’94 I went to Grand Rapids to cover minor league baseball–Class A baseball–and I traveled on the bus in the Midwest League. That was a great experience. There’s a romance with minor league baseball. Going to all those small towns. I covered the CBA my last couple of years there. When my editor took me off the baseball beat and told me he was going to put me on the CBA, I thought he was crazy. I protested because I didn’t want it but it was the best thing that could of happened. I loved the CBA. I loved the hoops and loved the guys who couldn’t quite make it to the NBA and developed their craft. I covered Moochie Norris. Keith Smart was an assistant coach at Fort Wayne. Mark Hughes was the assistant coach at Grand Rapids. It was great man. I got to see Lloyd “Sweet Pea” Daniels play one year. Jeff McInnis, Damon Jones, Ira Newble, Kevin Ollie.

When I made the transition to come into Cleveland…I was doing high school stuff and when the NBA became available, nobody wanted it. The Cavs beat was open and nobody wanted the job. It was good timing on my part that they allowed me to cover it. It was good too that a lot of the CBA guys I covered were in the NBA at that time, so that helped with the transition.

Covered the Cavs the past seven years and I’ve been reassigned to do a blog.

MT: How would you describe your writing style?

BW: I try to write what I like to read. I try to write by putting the reader there. I try to featurize [sic] my game stories. I try to focus in on a certain player or a certain event.

MT: Player journalist relationship. How do you think that’s changed since you’ve been on the scene?

BW: It’s always been my strength that people feel like they can talk to me. They can trust me. It’s something I’ve been blessed with. They take a liking to me and it builds an immediate trust. I’ve found with a lot of athletes that either it happens immediately or takes a little time. There are some cats who keep there distance and LeBron is one of them. He’s nice enough, cordial enough, but he has that line.

I was told by a friend that covers boxing that Sugar Ray Leonard had that thing too. Nice guy…gives quotes…but knows how to work the media. He just only lets you get so close. Unfortunately, he wasn’t as open as some players, but I think he’s a good guy.

I’d really like you to be fortunate. I’ve had a chance to have conversations with you about other sports.

It would have been nice if my relationship with LeBron would have been better.

MT: Lets get into this documentary you have going on.

BW: Growing up in Cincinnati, I always been a fan of whose the best athlete in a particular neighborhood. Once I went to college, then I began asking people who the best athlete was from their town.

Whenever I talked to someone from Dayton, Ohio and asked who was the best basketball player, the same name would always come up–Dwight Anderson. I’ve always had it in the back of my mind that I wanted to do something on Dwight. Once I became a sports writer and began to cover the NBA, I talked to a few people and Dwight’s name continued to come up. I thought that this guy must have been good if people in the NBA are still talking about him. I decided I didn’t want to write this. I was inspired by SportsCentury–the way they did their documentaries. I thought that doing something like that (documentary format) on Dwight would give it justice.

I just kept holding out saying…you know when I get some money I can have a big production and do something. Last year I decided and said to myself…you know what, I know a guy who has a camera, I know a guy who can edit…so lets do it.

My contacts in the NBA allowed me to get in touch with a lot of people.

Going back several years, during the Chicago pre-draft camp I was talking to Cedric Toney (Dwight heads the page and Cedric is halfway down) who had a cup of coffee with the Cavs. We were talking about Dwight during the pre-draft camp. Cedric said to me, “If you don’t believe me, lets go around the room and ask people.”

That’s when I went to Isiah (Thomas) and he called him Michael Jordan before Michael Jordan–and he wore 23. How about that?

I talked to Dominique Wilkins and he said, “You thought I could jump? This dude could get up!”

I talked to Mark Aguirre and on and on.

To flash forward, I talked to a guy at my church who could handle a camera pretty good and talked to him about the project and a guy I worked with at the Plain Dealer. I said let’s just do the best we can. So, we were able to do some interviews–which is on the rough cut on youtube–and some footage from NBC.

Money is still an issue, but we are still doing the best we can. We did some more shooting with Dwight. He celebrated his 30th high school reunion in August. I went and interviewed Dwight and some of his classmates.

Dwight in 1978 was the number one player in the nation. In fact, I spoke with Pat Williams and he told me that after they drafted Darryl Dawkins, their whole philosophy turned into getting the best high school players in the country and have them develop with the team.

So in ’78, they were scouting Dwight, but there was an incident on the court (we’ll get to it in the documentary), where Dwight ended up hitting a guy. Pat Williams said they walked out of the arena and they decided they weren’t going to sign or draft him.

I don’t even think Dwight knows this story yet. Chuck Daly was in the gym as well (He was an assistant with the Sixers).

Dwight was the best player in the country and was recruited by everybody. Goes to Kentucky and has a solid freshman year. Has great highlight games despite playing in a structured system. In high school, he was just so phenomenal. He was the only guy that I’d ever heard–when I talked to folks in Dayton–where there would be a crowd of people at his practices.

It was such a buzz in the city when Dwight was playing. He averaged a triple double his senior year–38 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists. He was an incredible talent.

Well he transferred to USC where he got into drugs. After leaving USC he played overseas. He was drafted in the second round by the Bullets but he had a reputation of drug addiction. He bounced around in the minor leagues of basketball and ended up back in Dayton and became homeless.

He also plays in underground basketball games hosted by drug dealers–which we all know goes on. Dwight was a star in that also.

He also lived on the street.

It became so bad that he lived on his parents porch. They wouldn’t let him in. So, there on his porch was a bed, an alarm clock and everything.

There was a young man he was real close to when he was on the streets that ended up getting murdered right in front of him.

From there his life somehow turned around. He’s working with a church in Dayton and they are really helping him get through.

Dwight, 48, played in a church league. He was leading the league in scoring playing against men in their twenties.

There are so many stories of guys like Dwight. You know, guys who have all the talent in the world. They for some reason make some bad decisions. I had to do this because Dayton was so close to Cincinnati. He was can’t miss. NBA teams were in line to draft him until he fell.

The more important part of the story is that Dwight is on his way back.

MT: Damn. Like you said, you hear of these stories all the time, but this guy seemed to be incredible. Was Sweet Pea (Lloyd Daniels) incredible? His passing game was sick but was he all around incredible? I don’t know.

BW: What’s Sweet Pea doing now?

MT: I don’t know. The last time I spoke to him was a couple of years ago in Vegas but we lost contact. He seemed to have everything together. I was actually impressed.

Lloyd if you are out there, hit me up.

BW: Man, that’s a name from the past. I saw him in the CBA. He used to come of the bench and go off.

MT: Yeah, he used to go off on ‘em. He was a bad boy.

BW: You could just see that he had skill.

MT: If you are compared to Magic, then you have to have something.

Branson what are you hopes and aspirations for doing this? What are you hoping to accomplish?

BW: Well, I have a passion for it. This is something that’s been in the making since the 80’s. Like the movie Hustle and Flow, I’m trying to hustle what I can and go with the flow when we get a cameraman that we can hire to do some shooting. I want to do a lot of research on days when I come home from work and make some calls to people we need to talk to. I think in time we’ll get it done. Dwight still has some things out there. I talked to Daquan Cook, who never saw him play, but being from Dayton, he can’t escape it.

Even Ron Harper…he played with Jordan…but if you asked Harper who was the best player, he’s going to say Dwight Anderson.

MT: It’s a shame, but in a span of a decade you had a lot of brothas go down because of drugs. You had Roy Tarpley, Len Bias

BW: Who was that brotha from San Francisco?

MT: Quentin Dailey. I actually spoke to Quentin last summer when he got the University of San Francisco job.

BW: In fact, with this documentary, what we’ll look at is that Dayton is on Interstate 75. Interstate 75, goes from Detroit all the way down to Florida. In the late 70’s and into the early 80’s, a lot of drug trafficking happened along that route. It was kinda tough in Cincinnati with illegal activity, because Simon Leis (sheriff) was after hustlers…pornography…so Cincinnati was real conservative. Dayton is a smaller town with a lot of working class folk. There’s a large Black community in Dayton.

Once people began to lose their jobs, that (drugs) started to happen. One guy told me that college coaches placed a stigma on Dayton kids because of all the drugs. A lot of kids just didn’t know how do deal with it.

In fact, Dwight didn’t get involved with drugs in high school. He slowly began experimenting in Lexington, but again, when he went to USC…now you are talking about ’81-’82 when the crack epidemic was going…Dwight was right in the middle of it. That’s what got him caught up.

The documentary talks about some professional athletes that he was doing drugs with.

MT: The one good thing about top level talent now, is that it’s coddled enough to where something like this doesn’t happen as much as it did back then. It still definitely happens. This should be shown to rookies.

BW: My goal for this is that I want two parts of this documentary. A thirty minute version where Dwight can go to schools and show the documentary. I also think he can be in some coaching and mentoring. He still has a great personality. He accepts what he did and doesn’t blame anybody. He never looked back on what could have been.

I met him for the first time this summer. I never met or seen him play.

MT: Is there a lot of footage out there of Dwight?

BW: Just what you saw on youtube. There is footage of him at Kentucky and USC that I’m after. In fact, there’s a shot ESPN shows all the time of a guy going out of bounds and he shoots over the backboard. That’s Dwight. After that is when they came up with the rule. It’s called the Dwight Anderson rule where you can’t score from behind the basket. They also would show a highlight with Larry Bird doing it and they wave it off.

MT: Can he still dunk?

BW: I think he can.

When Dwight was on the street, these guys were hoopin’. Running full court. One guy quit and they needed another guy. Dwight was on the sideline. He was cracked out and had on some dress shoes. Dwight told them he would play. They were like “OK” (skeptical) but they needed a body.

They said Dwight was the best player on the court…in dress shoes.

MT: Wow, he took the brothas to church.

BW: Yeah, it’s a shame he was making his own decisions at 17-18 because we’ll never know how good he might have been.

(If the video doesn’t play, refresh the page and double click. You’ll be redirected to youtube where you can watch the video. You really need to see this for it validates the interview.)

Here’s another video of Branson and a former colleague of Ron Glover, Jerold Wells Jr. and I at Black Athlete, Greg Moore, during the 2007 NBA Finals…

***Addendum June 6th 2011 Dwight Anderson trailer***

23 Responses to “Interview With Branson Wright: Back In the Day When Dwight Anderson Was Mike (Doc Trailer Added 6/6/11)”

  1. Mizzo says:

    I can’t believe no one is commenting on this interview. Are any of you hearing what ‘Nique, Isiah and Aguirre are saying about Dwight?

  2. thebrotherreport says:

    I think we all know someone who had the talent to “make it” and just got caught up in the streets and threw it all away.

    Playing for drug dealers is bigger than people think. I read a piece on the Nuggets Anthony Carter talking about how he used to play for drug dealers.

    I’m thankful to see Dwight Anderson getting his life together.

  3. Mizzo says:

    I knew and know a lot of players who threw it all away, but they didn’t have this kind of talent.

  4. Temple3 says:

    Mizzo:

    THIS is what no one else in the blog world can do. This is it. This is THE MOST VALUABLE work in sports. It isn’t blasting ESPN for being themselves. It isn’t defending millionaires who reject assistance. It isn’t pleading the cases of weak writers who revel in fat checks and abdicated responsibilities.

    It’s this. It’s simply this. It’s what you did with respect to Kermit Washington and Reggie Williams. It is simply this…this beautiful, wholesome, collaborative labor of love.

    Branson: I thank you for your work and your cool (ask Mizzo about that). That you’ve never met the subject of your work makes this all the more impressive.

    Kudos to both of you for doing what only YOU can do. Well done.

  5. […] This was sent to me this morning from Branson Wright. […]

  6. […] … to be covering his first World Series. Also from the Morning Call, Mark Wogenrich writes that NBC Sports and the USGA visited a local golf course to prepare for next year’s US Women’s Open. Paul Vigna of the Philadelphia Daily News says ESPN 950 in Philly will air ESPN Radio’s coverage … Interview With Branson Wright: Back In the Day When Dwight Anderson Was Mike […]

  7. Micheal E. Talley says:

    I am from Dayton, Ohio, and I have several brothers that played big time basketball. I have seen alot of talent, yet the man named Dwight Anderson is the real deal….
    One day I road my 12 speed bike to D.A’s house, which is appox. 2 miles from the gym. To wittness to him, I road my bike to the gym and he ran right next to me the whole way to the gym. He then played every game for 2 hours, then he ran step to spoke all the way back home. I never seen anything like it in all my life…

    He is the real deal…….

    Micheal Talley
    Dayton, Ohio

  8. […] did a much slept on interview with Branson Wright of the Cleveland Plain Dealer regarding the legend of Dwight Anderson. In the […]

  9. gil thomas says:

    you must do a story on bobby austin. a lot of scouts had austin rated higher than dwight anderson. dwight was a shade quicker, austin was a better leaper and had more range on his shot. austin college coach ed badjer held him back. former nba star lasalle thompson has gone on record saying that nobody including micheal jordan was better than austin. coming out cincinnati aiken high in 1978 austin was the player of the year he average over 27pts per game and 14.5 rebounds. darrell griffith was 1976 high school player of the year and college player of the year and the rookie of the year in the nba. a lot scouts called austin a darrell griffith type of player , but with a greater first step. austin vertical leap was measured at 46inches , griffith was at 48 i doubt dwight vertical was over 41inches. i dont want knock dwight but austin was a just a little better player than dwight. off the court austin was a class act. a great student. very well spoken. ed badger black balled austin from making to the nba. that story should be told.austin played at uc finish as the 8th leading scorer in school history playing small forward at 6-2.he had a better jump shot than micheal jordan, he was quicker than jordan , the same type of leaper than jordan. he was even black ball from playing in the cba…i have talk to louisville players from the national championship team they all claim austin had a gifted, he just went to the wrong college. at 32 he was serving former bearcat louis banks. austin ruled cincinati basketball from 1977-1992 . he had the best built body on a 6-2 frame, he was bigger and stronger than dwight..its okay to talk about dwight but lets not forget bobby austin if you are from cincinnati.

  10. philip says:

    I remember watching kentucky vs Notre Dame when Anderson dunked over and Lambier and the other big guy at Notre dame at the time. Never saw anything like it. Closest was Jordan over the Ewing.

  11. Kalor Williams Sr says:

    DA was the real deal, quickest player I have ever played against and watched in person. Tremendous explosiveness! I will never forget the night he scored 52 points against Eric Love, and the Colonel Whites Cougars coached by Doris Black.
    I appreciate your documentary, and I constantly tell people in Texas that the best basketball player I have ever seen is Dwight Anderson. I played in High School with Ron Harper, and played against Frankie Sanders, Uncle Bob, Bob Patterson, Jim & John Paxton, Cedric Toney and so many other pro players, but none of them were even close to DA!

    Great Job!

    Kalor Williams Sr

  12. geoff hodges says:

    I grew up a Kentucky fan and remember Dwight Anderson. I stared going to games when I was 5 years old at Memorial when Issel was there. Who could ever forget Anderson if you were lucky enough to see him play? The best ending to a basketball game EVER was the UK vs Kansas game at Rupp in 1978 when Dwight single handedly won it for UK. I think UK was down by 8 points with 28 seconds to go. He made 2 free throws and 1 basket to tie with about 8 seconds left and UK won in overtime as I recall. Anderson drew a foul after the made basket to go to the line. How many times have you seen somebody draw a charge at the end to go to the line and win it? Don’t forget that that was before the 3 pt shot….

  13. JOEY SMITH says:

    I had the pleasure of watching Dwight Anderson and John Paxon play in high school and college. And went to school and played on the same court with Ron Harper and Credic Toney (my neighbor and good friend). My brother Jessie Smith started at the other forward spot with Dwight on Roth HS. Also, my oldest brother CW Hoskins. Roth HS (deceased) played against Frankie Sanders. All of these players were great coming out of High School, but I think you all forgot one of the best player ever out of Dayton and the best shooter I have ever seen, that pound for pound was better then all of them. DONALD SMITH, Roth HS and University of Dayton All American and ex NBA player. Dwight is easily the most talent player out of Dayton and could/should have been one of the 50 best ever in the NBA. Most people out of the Dayton area have never heard of him, and when I tell them he was better then Ron Harper, and had talent similar to MJ, they fine that hard to believe. I’m glad to see him get his life back in order and I currently (last 8 years) live in the Wash/VA/Maryland Metro area and attend High School B-Ball games all the time, and I still have never saw anyone at the High School level better then Dwight Anderson was.

  14. Reggie says:

    Gil Thomas, can i ask you a question? Please tell me want schools had Bobby Austin rated ahead of Dwight, the only players out of Cincy at that with national rep was two juniors(class of ’79) LaSalle Thompson and the big kid out of Cin. Elder. (2) If Bobby was so great why in the would Ed Badger blackball a so-called great player. In the mid and late 70’s AAU was not the place to for summer basketball, Gil have you ever heard of B/C All-Stars camp in Millegeville,GA? That was place to be back in the day Gil, the best of best of high school basketball players in the country. In the Summer of ’77 Mr. Dwight Anderson was named MVP of the entire Gil, was Bobby Austin, was he even invited? Gil, I think I would believe and trust the world of Dominique Wilkins, Isaiah Thomas, Mark Aquirre, and Herb Williams over and before LaSalle “soft” Thompson. Both of you guys are hatin homers! Please reply Gil Thomas

  15. […] Carmelo was obviously not to be outdone and put up 40 himself…including the game winner. He’s now 10-4 against LeBron. He and LeBron shot a combined 4-20 in the first half before both heated up in the second. A game like this proves how impossible players of this caliber are to stop one on one. LeBron said to one reporter that if he were any closer on Melo’s last shot, he would have fouled him. This was great for the fans and after a lackluster first half, the game took on a definite playoff feel. There were many get well George Karl signs. It was also interesting to hear how the fans reacted to large images of the Pittsburgh Steelers and University of Michigan logos. The Q Center is good at keeping the fans involved and produced these two images whenever there was a crowd lull. Josh Cribbs…probably the loudest ovation of the night…and Bernie Kosar were in attendance. There is a cozy feel to the arena…unlike most others. Bruce Wimbish of the Cavs front office was gracious enough to show me around and it was good to catch up with Justice B. Hill and also my boy Branson Wright. […]

  16. gil thomas says:

    bobby was invited to all the camps. bc and 5 star did not attend was playing baseball all summer 77 austin was an all city shortstop playing only 1 year in high school his jr. year. bobby was highly recruited by over 300 colleges louisville recruited the hardest , hall of fame coach crum said austin was a darrelll griffith type of player with greater quickness and better jump shot. sof. year dean smith was impress with austin and all the north carolina players, all- american mike okoren went on to say austin was in a class by himself with his quickness. that was posted in the cincinnati post paper bobby was first team all state with dwight and clark kellog hs.all american . led the city in scoring .cincinnati player of the year in 1978. no he did not get the national pub , dwight got. against playoff team withrow austin drop 39pts 19 rebounds. lasalle thompson
    stats 27pts 15 rebs. you need to talk to some of the players who have played dwight and bobby and they will tell you the difference. bobby used to go down to un. of ky. in the summer .with pat cummings and he would eat dirk minnefield alive and dunk on sam bowie and charles hurt. all the players at uk thought austin was already in the nba with pat. talk to to dicky beal he used to played against austin in the summer. if you have email i could scan the articles that had austin rank 1 over dwight voted by coachesbobby austin went to cincinnati aiken at the time a football school. drop 44pts against taft high….dwight was quicker bobby was stronger better leaper than dwight. the papers in cincinnati would always say austin was cincinnati’s anderson to louisville’s darrell griffith. and that he was in the same class of dayton roth’s dwight andreson. i can send that to you reggie. bobby austin was mvp of the aau in cincinnati high school player of the year in cincinnati in 1978 not thompson or the big kid out of elder. boby high game 18 pts vs louisville freshmen year. 31 pts vs florida state going 14-18 from the field 20pts vs north carolina and duke. gene banks was impress with austin. sr year drop 24pts vs pepperdine and virgina tech. coac ed badger went out out of his way to blackball bobby. why would he help derek smith , mickey dilliard of florida state and countless other marginal players who had played in the metro conference .austin was not given the chance to played overseas or the cba at the time why ? finish 8th all time at cincy in scoring paying mostly out of postition at the 3. badger never let austin go green light . cincy was on probation for his first 2 years badger got fired after 1 year after austin sr year. went straight to nba as a scout or asst, coach, never try to help his best player austin get to the league. louisville asst coac wade houston always thought austin should have been a star in the nba, he was blackball by ed badger. not hating on dwight , i love dwights game , he was a bigger AI TO ME . austin was a 6-3 david thompson type of player he won or saved around 9 games for aiken his sr year shooting buzzer beaters ala kobe. sof year in college austin shoots 35 jump shots to beat a good pittsburg team led by sam clancy. you want to talk about aau i seen darrell griffith played aau baskeball in his sof year at louisville. talking about aau ball for 18 years olds 24 year old men. read larry bird book he played aau ball at 19 -20 before he went to isu. i was not talking about aau that the kids played today, the traveling squads. talk to don smith a dayton legend, bobby at 19 he would busted his ass playing him after practice. he was austin asst, coach at cincinnati he knew what was going on with the hate badger had for austin. badger would get hate hate mail or phone calls with uc fans begging him to pay austin at t he 2 position and turn him loose.

  17. mark landers says:

    Branson, there’s two guys who could tell you everything about Dwight. Those two guys are Michael Proctor, and Rick Dawson. They were very close childhood friends with Dwight. Yes, Dwight was and still is great. He can still lace em up with the best of them. Back in the day 5 Star and The Pocanos were the national. AAU camps and Dwight was reigning king. He won best camper at both camps. Check Street & Smiths. That was the National Prep Magazine back in the 70’s. I still may have the books available. Dayton, OH. Was a hot bed for D-I talent back n the day. We had the Cash brothers, Wild Bill Higgins, Donald Smith, JD Grigsby, Uncle Bob Patterson, Frankie Sanders & Sutton, The late CW Haskins, and the list goes on. Then came Dwights teammates The Late Dirty Sug Nelson, Paul Thompson, Leroy Gatewood etc. next generation, Mark “shake n bake” Baker, Kirk “ice T” Taylor. Roth HS was the Dayton Dunbar of today. Dwight was Dayton Roosevelt’s Freshman Phenom before it closed and moved to Roth HighSchool. BW, your best consultant on Dwight is Coach Hailey. good luck with the documentary. I can’t wait 2c it.

  18. MM says:

    I can speak on the comparison……..My high school team played Louisville Male & Louisville Central and Ballard in 1976 when I was a freshmen JV player so I saw jeff Lamp, Darrell Griffith and Jerry Eaves. In 1977 we played Dayton Dunbar and Roth–dunbar was supposed to have been the #3 ranked team in the state we scored 100,,,Roth was #1 and we still scored 80 and lost to Dwight Anderson.

    I later played against BA in practice at UC 1979-81 and Badger didn’t like him for all the same reasons he kept a guy like me around.(I graduated UC 1983 and didn’t get into everything that wasn’t a part of the college experience—-I was a for real student athelete.)

    Anyway, BA was quicker, a better leaper and had a little range. Poor shoot selection, but a better shooter. DA was stronger, could play in the paint and played bigger than his listed 6-3 height(the boy was really a good 6-1, but he could play 6-8 with ease and that is what BA lacked. He was a “tweener” had the skills, but was too small and not physical enough to play maybe at the next level. I saw Aguirre play as senior in high school when DePaul played Butler and he at 6-3(listed 6-4/6-5) played bigger and BA wasn’t gonna do that.

  19. JW says:

    Saw Dwight Anderson high jump 6′-6″ at a high school track meet in chuck taylor’s and did not even know what he was doing. Best basketball player I have ever seen at any level and had natural talent to match. Great story to tell and encourage you to do it right. His high school coach, Mike Haley Sr., works at the Englewood, OH YMCA and would be a great reference. He also has a story that needs to be told. Press on with this effort and good luck!

  20. bill woods says:

    Love Dwight, would love to know more. Thanks and good luck.

  21. […] a wonderfully written piece,TSF fam Branson Wright relives that day through the eyes of prominent African-Americans and even those that were present […]

  22. […] with Branson Wright of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Wright wrote a great piece on the 45th Anniversary of the Black […]

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