FALL 2012 Auction
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/2/2012
In an age long before there was mind-boggling hype at the Olympic level or even in the pros for that matter, the United States sent an Olympic basketball team off to Rome, Italy, to do battle in international competition that turned out to be easily as dreamy as the more hoopla-friendly versions that would come decades later. In 1960, it was only our collegiate talent that competed, or thereabouts, and yet this team dominated in its eight contests in a fashion that would have made any of its successors over the past two decades proud. At the center of the spotlight was the three-time NCAA Player of the Year, Oscar Robertson, who was joined by the likes of Jerry West, Jerry Lucas, Walt Bellamy and Terry Dischinger. As imposing as that group was, it could have been even more ominous for international crowd had amateur basketball not been in the middle of a jurisdictional wrangle that prompted a compromise that planted four AAU players and one U.S. serviceman on the squad. That maneuver left stalwarts like Lenny Wilkens and Ohio State's John Havlicek at home, though it hardly seemed problematic as the resulting squad still managed to thump eight rivals by an average of more than 40 points per game. As a 21-year-old coming off perhaps the most dominant college career ever, Oscar Robertson represents the most important persona on a team that itself wound up in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame as a unit. That means there's virtually no upper end in examining the impact of this Wilson-tagged No. 14 jersey from that historic squad. The shirt shows enormous game use throughout but is otherwise without significant blemish or impairment in any respect. The red-and-blue "U.S.A." and "No. 14" are in superb condition, with little or no fraying of the embroidery and good color presentation despite the game use. It's difficult to imagine or more important Olympic basketball jersey coming from a player who would ultimately become so dominant at the professional level.
Comes with a Letter of Authenticity from Oscar Robertson.