In the first NCAA tournament, Oregon beats Ohio Stale 46-33 in the championship game in Evanston, Ill. James Naismith dies in Lawrence, Kans., at 78.
Motivated by the dominance of Oklahoma A&M's 7-foot Bob Kurland and DePaul's 6'10" George Mikan, who stand under the baskets and swat opponents' shots away, the college game adopts the goaltending rule.
Kurland becomes the first player to regularly use the dunk shot, and the weapon helps Oklahoma A&M win its first NCAA title, defeating New York University 49-45.
Maurice podoloff, a 5'2" Russian immigrant, lawyer, hockey executive and operator of the New Haven ( Conn.) Arena, leads a group of fellow arena masters in founding the professional Basketball Association of America. Three years later the BAA will absorb another pro league, the National Basketball League, and rename itself the
National Basketball Association.
Duquesne's Chuck Cooper becomes the first black drafted by the NBA when he is chosen by the Boston Celtics in the second round. But because of the way the league's 1950-51 schedule unfolds, Earl Lloyd of West Virginia State, whom the Washington Capitols draft in the ninth round, is the first black man to play in an NBA game.
In a game against Virginia, William and Mary's Bill Chambers gets 51 rebounds, still an NCAA record.
As stalling tactics threaten to spoil the appeal of the pro game, Danny Biasone, a bowling alley proprietor who owns the Syracuse Nationals, invents the 24-second clock.
In a youth league game in Cornwall Heights, Pa., nine-year-old Lew Alcindor gathers in a rebound and, largely out of reflex, throws up his first hook shot. Years later, after Alcindor has changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, his coach with the Los Angeles Lakers, Pat Riley, describes Abdul-Jabbar's skyhook as "the most awesome weapon in the history of any sport."
The Philadelphia Warriors' Wilt Chamberlain sets the NBA single-game record for rebounds with 55 in a game against Bill Russell and the Celtics.
Chamberlain scores 100 points in a game against the New York Knicks.