1994…. Bill Clinton was President of the United States…Gasoline was a then unheard of $1.09 a gallon…. A new car cost approximately $12,000.00. Forrest Gump and the Lion King graced movie theater screens, we spent an entire Friday evening in June watching on TV a Ford Bronco Police chase, Major League Baseball went on strike and cancelled there season.. Janet Jackson performed sold out shows through out the world.
In sports, Nebraska is voted the #1 college football team in the country over an equally undefeated Penn State, leading to the formation of the BCS Bowl System, Tanya Harding arranged for Nancy Kerrigan to get clubbed in the knee prior to the Winter Olympics, the Buffalo Bills lost the Super Bowl for the 4th consecutive year, Arkansas defeated Duke to win the NCAA Basketball championship.
Somewhere in the basketball office of Dick Cetrone at Sto-Rox High School an idea of a High School Summer League in Western PA was hatched. Little did I know that 20 year’s later that one site, 8 team league would grow into the year round basketball program we proudly named the Pittsburgh Basketball Club.
Twenty years later, our summer league now has 4 sites, a championship held between all the top teams in each division, Junior Varsity and freshman divisions, later we added a College Division, proudly named the Pro-Am. To further our goal of re-establishing Western Pa’s presence in High School basketball, leagues and tourneys were added for grade school and Junior High divisions, as well as regular season Varsity matchups that were held with capacity crowds at various High School and College venues through out the area.
As the 10 year anniversary of the league became the 15th anniversary, we realized the test of time had been met, and a Hall of Fame concept was put together to honor the many players, coaches and administrators that came before the PBC, yet served as its example.
On the 20th anniversary of the PBC, we have no idea just how many kids have called there summers, winters, falls and springs there home for basketball. I guesstimate several thousand a year. We polled a collection of coaches, former players and members of the media to name 50 players that stood out in these 1st 20 years. The results, though in no way scientific, but like any debate of “who was the best” of an era, really gets the juices flowing and nothing beats when our Hall of Fame generation debates todays generation on who had the best team, or who had the best point guard. So listed below is our survey’s result for the “Top 50 of the First 20”. This list could easily have been the Top 200, that’s how many great players the PBC has been blessed to host these past 20 years. Here is to the next 20 years!