submitted by Leroi C. Johnson
pictured above: The Inner City Sports Legends program was started in 1992 by Richard Clark a Bennett High School teammate of NBA Hall of Famer Bob Lanier. Clark was later joined by attorney LeRoi C. Johnson a star athlete at Lafayette High and of Canisius College and Georgetown Law, Zellie Dow an All American football player at Howard University, Lum Smith a Buffalo State Basketball player and Gilbert Hargrave a star athlete at Hutch Tech.
The group was formed to recognize sports achievements of former regional athletes and to continue sports friendship and brotherhood. The event traditionally takes place the night before Thanksgiving and is being held at the Rose ( formerly held at the Humboldt Inn).
The group has recognized athletes such as greats Jim Horne of the University of Buffalo, Harvey Austin of Purdue, Alex Harris of Virginia Union, Ed Harling of Bowling Green, Bob Lanier NBA Hall of Fame and others.
Honoree Ricky McCarley played at Kentucky State University under legendary coach John McClendon who learned the game from the inventor of the game Dr. James Naismith. Ricky Williams played with the Utah Jazz and the Chicago Bulls while his brother Jimmie Williams won the New York State High School Basketball Championship and took Syracuse University to the NCAA final Four,Willie Hutch Jones played at Vanderbilt and with the Los Angles Lakers and the Clippers.
Gene Roberson, Mike Norwood and Roger Brown were high school legends and college stars at Canisius College. Chris Fuller is a Buffalo State Basketball Hall of Famer, and former Division I coach. Fuller and LeRoi Johnson were both friends of legendary Hall of Fame coach at Georgetown John Thompson. Chris Roosevelt played at Clarion State along side of legendary Kentucky coach John Calipari.
This year’s honorees are Charles Mancuso, Buffalo State Hall of Famer and a Buffalo sports icon; and Jason Rowe, a Buffalo basketball, college and Professional star;Art Serotte, legendary football coach at Grover Cleveland High School, Romeo McKinney legendary basketball coach at South Park High School; Yvette Angel, a legendary basketball star and most heralded female athlete from Buffalo who played at Ohio State; Dwight Williams former Providence College Star; Gene Roberson, Roger Brown and Mike Norwood Canisius College and Inner City stars and Jim Horne UB great.
Our story is deeply rooted in American and regional sports history.
We welcome all athletes of any sport from any era to join us. Looking forward to seeing everyone to celebrate our 29th year.
Where: The Rose, 199 Scott Street( at lower Michigan Avenue). November 24, 2022, Doors open at 6pm.