Former Kentucky Wesleyan All-American and NCAA Champion Dallas Thornton will be inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame on August 22.
His basketball career spanned 27 years at Louisville Male High School, KWC, Miami Floridians (ABA) and the Harlem Globetrotters.
Thornton led the Panthers as a four-year starter to two NCAA Division II National Championships in 1966 and 1968 plus a third place finish in 1967. He averaged 17.5 points and 8.1 rebounds per game in his career.
The Louisville native earned first, second and third team All-America honors by four different selectors. In the record book, he ranks fifth in scoring with 1,929 points seventh in rebounds with 903. He started a school record 112 straight games.
The NBA Baltimore Bullets (4th) and the American Basketball Association’s Miami Floridians (5th) drafted Thornton. He played two seasons for the Floridians. Following the ABA, he played in 17 years with the Globetrotters playing with legends Meadowlark Lemon and Curly Neal.
He visited 75 countries, traveled the globe three times and performed before the Queen of England. Thornton appeared in several TV shows as a Globetrotter, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was a guest of two presidents at the White House.
Prior to KWC, he was an All-American and all-state selection at Male as a senior in 1964. He averaging 16.5 points 14 rebounds per game.
Thornton joins fellow Panther honorees All-American “King” Kelly Coleman (2000), basketball coach Guy Strong (2002), All-American George Tinsley (2011) and Voice of the Panthers Joel Utley (2016).
Comprising the 45th KSHOF class are Mitch Barnhart, athletics director at the University of Kentucky; Michael Bush, football star at Louisville Male High School, the University of Louisville and in the NFL; Sue Feamster, former UK athletic administrator and trailblazer for girls’ and women’s participation; and Dallas Thornton.