Fall Premier Auction 2020


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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/11/2020

One of college basketball's most talked about players to this day is Len Bias from the University of Maryland. His skill and athleticism at the college level cause many to speak of him in the same breath as his ACC rival, Michael Jordan from North Carolina. Hours after being selected as the NBA's #1 overall pick in 1986, Bias tragically passed away. Due to his brief time in the college spotlight, and a life cut short before gracing an NBA court, autograph's from Len Bias are obviously quite scarce. A Beckett 10 autograph accompanies this impressively signed index card.

Provenance from James Gallagher of Dayton, Ohio:

In 1985 I worked at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio. My military duties frequently took me to the Washington, DC area on business.

On the morning of January 6, 1985 I had a flight from Dayton to the DC area. In the gate area waiting to board I noticed the University of Maryland basketball team. They had played the University of Dayton at UD Arena the night before, January 5, and were heading back to campus. 

Since my son Tim actively (an understatement!) collected sports autographs I always kept a stack of blank index cards in my briefcase just in case I ever ran into a team or player in my travels, and on occasion that did indeed happen. One of the Maryland players sat next to me on the flight (not sure which one), so I asked him to sign an index card and pass the small stack of cards around among his teammates and for each to sign one. I confess I did not know who the individual players were, but was at least aware Maryland had an excellent basketball program and was usually in the rankings, so I figured Tim would be really happy to add these to his collection (he was!).

One of those players that day happened to be Len Bias, who signed his name and uniform #34 on his index card. When Bias tragically passed away the next year in June of 1986, just after being selected the #1 overall NBA draft pick, Tim reminded me he was one of the Maryland players I had seen that morning.

I looked it up and in that game at Dayton January 5, 1985, Bias scored 22 points for Maryland in a 67-63 loss to UD.

Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $500
Final prices include buyers premium.: $1,066
Number Bids: 6
Auction closed on Friday, December 11, 2020.
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