Harlem Globetrotter appears in Vermillion The entire Harlem Globetrotters team will be appearing at the DakotaDome on Friday, Feb. 5 in an appearance sponsored by The University of South Dakota and the Vermillion Chamber of Commerce.
But Vermillion residents were treated to a pre-show appearance of Globetrotter James "Jumbo" Bacon, on Saturday, Jan. 23 at the Vermillion High School basketball triple-header against Yankton High School.
Bacon, a bruising 6'9" power forward in his fourth season with the Globetrotters, made an appearance and signed autographs between the 9th-grade and junior varsity games at Vermillion High School. USD coordinated Bacon's appearance with the Globetrotters and Gary Culver, athletic director at Vermillion High School.
Bacon, a member of the Globetrotters 1998 Los Angeles Summer Pro League Championship, was also an instructor at the Globetrotters 10-city youth basketball camps during the summer and served as an "Advanced Ambassador" during the 1997 and 1998 tours. He was named the Globetrotters Most Improved Player following the Globetrotters 1996 tour and was a member of the European "Ultimate Challenge" tour vs.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's Legendary All-Stars, averaging 5.1 points in scoring and 2.2 rebounds over 11 games.
Bacon graduated Arizona State, where he earned a degree in social work and was named Student Athlete of the Year. He played under Coach Bill Frieder with the ASU Sun Devils and was instrumental in the team's NCAA "Sweet 16" appearance.
Overall he averaged 9.9 points and 4.5 rebounds in three seasons at ASU.
One of 22 children born and raised in Los Angeles, CA, Bacon prepped at Dorsey High School, where he earned All-City and team Most Valuable Player honors. He has visited 15 countries during his stellar career with the Globetrotters. Included among his favorite Globetrotter memories is a trip to South Africa during which he learned to navigate a yacht. Another highlight was playing in the 20,000th game on ESPN.
A substitute teacher in the off-season, Bacon's advice to aspiring athletes is simple: "Manage your time daily, study, work out, and be a good citizen to yourself and others. Listen to your parents and teachers, and write a list of goals that you strive to achieve," he says.
Tickets to the Feb. 5 Globetrotters show are $10 and $12 for general admission. Reserved tickets are $16 with special VIP seats offered for $25. $2 discounts are available for youth (12 and under) and senior citizens. Discounts are also available to groups of 15 or more. For more information about tickets, call (605) 677-5958.