by John "JT" Toth
This morning, we lost a local sports legend. Dick Groat passed away at the age of 92. Groat was the original dual athlete; he started with basketball at Duke University. He was the National Player of the Year in 1950-1951 when he became the first player in history to lead the country in points per game (26.0) and assists per game (7.6). In 1952, Groat would be selected 3rd overall by the Fort Wayne Pistons in the NBA Draft. Groat would make the all-rookie team but would soon be pulled away to serve two years in the armed forces.
After serving our country, the Pirates would approach Groat as a baseball player, and the Wilkinsburg, PA resident decided to play for his hometown Pittsburgh Pirates. Groat would go on to become part of what is still considered one of the best double play combinations the game has ever seen with hall of fame 2B-Bill Mazeroski.
- 2-time world series winner
- 1960 NL MVP and 1960 NL Batting Champion.
- 2007 College Basketball Hall of Fame
- 2023 Pittsburgh Pirates Hall of Fame
Dick Groat never gets mentioned with the Bo Jacksons or the Deion Sanders, but I am here to say that he should.