The411 with Sherlene Shanklin: Darrell "Dr. Dunkenstein" Griffith will receive a huge honor Tuesday in the community he grew up in. The Louisville native will break ground on the Darrell Griffith Athletic Center. It will built on the site of the West End School on the corner of 26th and Virginia Avenue. The state of the art facility will have a regulation basketball court that seats 500 people. The nearly 12,000 square foot building will also have a volleyball court, weight, and exercise rooms, concessions and gallery space.
The groundbreaking ceremony will take place around 9:30 a.m. Griffith's family will be present along with Congressman John Yarmuth, Mayor Greg Fischer, Councilwoman Attica Scott, and Coaches Denny Crum and Wade Houston. The projected completion date is 2014.
Darrell Griffith attended Louisville Male High School and was highly recruited from universities from all over the U.S. He decided to stay in the community he loved and attended the University of Louisville. Griffith was on the first squad to win the NCAA men's basketball championship in 1980. He was also named Most Outstanding Player in the Final Four. Griffith set a school record in his senior year by scoring 825 points in one season. He had many accolades during his college career including First Team All-American by the Associated Press and the Wooden Award as the best college basketball player in the nation. His jersey number, 35 was retired during the ceremonies after the 1980 season. Griffith's reign as Louisville's all-time scorer with 2,333 points in his career stood for over 25 years.
His career did not stop there after being drafted in the first round as the second overall pick in the National Basketball Association's, (NBA) draft, Griffith was selected by the Utah Jazz. In his rookie season, he was named Rookie of the Year. Griffith had an extremely successful pro career by playing with the Jazz from 1980 to 1991. He scored over 12,000 points during his career and the franchise also retired the famous number #35 on December 4, 1993. He played his entire professional career with the Jazz.
Griffith has been apart of many social and civic events and causes. He currently works as a special assistant to the President of the University of Louisville.
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