Tuesday, November 5th, 2013 at 1:35 pm  |  7 responses

Bernard King Faced Racism from Tennessee Cops in the 70s (VIDEO)

In the latest ESPN “30 for 30″ documentary, airing tonight, NBA legend Bernard King talks about dealing with racism off the court while starring for the Tennessee Vols in the 1970s. Per the AP: “King, the first former Tennessee player inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, cites one incident in which he says an officer hit him in the head with the butt of his gun while responding to a loitering report. The documentary, titled ‘Bernie and Ernie,’ focuses on the friendship of King and former Tennessee teammate Ernie Grunfeld. King played for Tennessee from 1974-77 after arriving from Fort Hamilton High School in Brooklyn, N.Y. He said he had never talked about the racism he encountered during his college years with anyone but his family before discussing the issue in the film. ‘The basic reason is relatively simple,’ King said in a telephone interview. ‘I’m 56 years old. I’ve never talked about anything that was private. Everything was always related to the game and my impact on the game of basketball and what I thought about that. I never revealed anything from the private side. I just felt compelled at this time in my life to talk about those things because for many years you carry that around. It was very important for me to share that.’ The 14-year NBA veteran, who now lives in Atlanta, stressed that he has ‘no bitterness whatsoever’ toward his alma mater. ‘I wish the university and the basketball team all the success in the world,’ King said. ‘I would recommend that any athlete on the basketball side or football side or any sport, I would recommend the University of Tennessee for them. I don’t harbor any bitterness. You can’t go through life like that. It eats you up.’”

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  • http://signup.divinerenergy.com/ Anthony Dixon

    Couldnt imagine living in those times. Will watch to learn some history.

  • shockexchange

    Good thing Bernard King is back in the NYC where the NYPD’s “stop and frisk” policies are not considered harassment by black men. Oh wait …

  • http://signup.divinerenergy.com/ Anthony Dixon


  • Teddy-the-Bear


  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Not surprised. Hasn’t gotten better today.

  • shockexchange

    People from the NYC always want to point the finger at “look how they treat people down south.” People down south refer to the NYC as “the new south.”

  • Above_You

    So true.