By Harold Bell
Quotes from the Fox Sports web site as it relates to Jason Whitlock on John Thompson!
“The Fab Five are taking credit for the real accomplishments of John Thompson’s and Patrick Ewing’s Georgetown Hoyas.
It was Thompson’s all-black, Ewing-led teams a decade before the Fab Five that shook the foundation of college basketball, changed the complexion of starting lineups across the country, opened coaching doors that had previously been closed to blacks and paved the way for black sportswriters at major newspapers.”
You got it all wrong have you forgotten the March 19, 1966 NCAA title game between all white and number one ranked Kentucky faced an all black Texas Western team?
The game took place at the University of Maryland’s Cole Field House. I was there when the all black Texas Western team pulled the biggest upset in college basketball history. They changed the face of college basketball forever and not John Thompson Jr.
John Thompson and Georgetown University did absolutely nothing to pave the way for black sportswriters at major newspapers. He in fact did much like Don King did in boxing he stunted the growth of blacks in media by refusing excess to his players. He has since become a know it all so-called major media.
The Washington Post, Sports Editor George Solomon and his staff were treated like sports media step-children. Former Washington Post sports writers Dave Dupree, Michael Wilbon and David Aldridge had front row seats to his sports’ media charade.
When he could not win a game and had no one in so-called major media to promote Georgetown Basketball he turned to a little black oriented radio station W-O-O-K and “The Original Inside Sports” hosted by yours truly.
When he finally had some winning success he hired a white man as his play by play announcer for Georgetown basketball at W-O-O-K Radio.
Jason, I was also puzzled by your quote saying, “It’s easy to forgive Jalen Rose for his lack of self awareness. It’s America. In this country self awareness and common sense are our most rare commodities.”
Jason, were you asleep under a rock when Kentucky played Texas Western, where were you and your awareness?
This observation by you was really over the top, “his players were the inner-city black kids who left a legacy of jobs and playing opportunities for other impoverished minorities that exposes the lack of substance in the fads popularized by the Fab Five.”
You must be dreaming! Then you go to put your foot in your mouth by saying, “Hoya Paranoia is the story that deserves celebration and should serve as a teaching tool. Fab Five is a safe, harmless story celebrating black kids for choosing style over substance.”
You really think that the John Thompson and Hoya Paranoia deserves a celebration? If you interviewed 100 former Georgetown players off the record 90 will say John Thompson was a fraud!
He betrayed his life time friend, protector and assistant coach Bob Grier (aka Bat Man) by stealing the affections of his girlfriend GT academic advisor Mary Finley. He also kicked Mike Riley his former player and assistant coach for over 3 decades to the curve and under the bus.
I have known John Thompson since he attended my alma mater Brown Middle School in NE Washington, DC. I was there to watch him develop as a player and a coach and he was overrated in both.
John’s NBA career was a bigger fraud as his college coaching career. His NBA claim to fame “I backed up Bill Russell.”
The late Boston Celtic coach the legendary Red Auerbach was a dear friend and mentor to me. I know how much backing up Russell he did. It was like sending a sailboat to back-up the sinking of the Titanic, one of the same!
Red threw John into the expansion draft because he was too soft. Check out how many 7 footers were put in the expansion draft during the Red Auerbach and Bill Russell era.
The “Big Bad John” you see and hear today saw the handwriting on the wall and retired from the NBA.
I already knew what Red had known all the time, you can’t dictate heart.
John Thompson could have played the lead role of The Tin Man in the movie “The Wizard of Oz.” He had no heart!
Back in the day on the playground when he and to play like a point guard, I would banish him from the court and make him sit on the hill. He sit there until Sandy Freeman and Bob Grier his protectors shown up.
On the playground he would dare not raise his voice and use the type of profanity he used as the coach on the Georgetown bench. I have no idea where he picked up that part of his coaching personality (Bobby Knight).
John Thompson’s secret to success, he was big and black and he used profanity and “The Race Card” to successfully intimidate his players and white folks!
He gained world wide recognition when he hugged Hoya player Freddy Brown after he mistakenly threw a pass intended for one of his teammates to North Carolina’s James Worthy.
The outcome of the game was still hanging in the balance when Brown in the closing seconds of the NCAA Championship final inadvertently pass the ball to Worthy.
John Thompson was seen hugging Brown in a picture that went around the world. Today Freddy Brown’s feelings about his old coach are x-rated.
In a Washington Post magazine article John said, “My mother better not get in my way when a dollar is on the line.” In that same story he claimed money could overcome racism in America!
Early in his second season at Georgetown when his job was on the line, in the wee hours of the morning someone hung a banner in the Georgetown Gym that read “John Thompson the nigger coach must go!”
I was his first media line of defense. When he called my home at 3 am in the morning explaining what had happen I was pissed off.
I must admit he played me like a beaten drum. I later discovered he hung the banner himself.
It helped him keep his job. The University President Father Henley was scared of the institution being seen in the national spotlinght as racist. He assured media at a hastily called press conference that John Thompson’s job was safe. Mission accomplished and the rest is tainted college basketball history.
This is the same college coach who took money under the table from his Georgetown designated player sports agent David Falk. The player transactions and kickbacks made him a millionaire before he left the University.
Falk also short changed NBA Hall of Fame player Adrian Dantley out of several million dollars.
I don’t even want to think about how much money he misused in the bank accounts of Michael Jordan, Pat Ewing, Alonzo Mourning and Dikembe Mutombo.
In a conversation with Adrian on his last visit to DC as an assistant coach with the Denver Nuggets he said, “David was not alone when it comes to laying the blame for misusing my money, Donald Dell the CEO and founder of the company ProServe must share some of the responsibility.”
Adrian learned of the fraud when I called his mother and informed her of the missing monies from his account.
In the meantime John Thompson financial empire continued to grow, there were the slot machines, real-estate deals and the home he shared with his white mistress Mary Finley in Las Vegas. Please excuse “The Race Card!”
This proves that everything that happens in Las Vegas does not stay in Las Vegas.
The Washington Post published part one of a two part series investigation of these undercover discrepancies but part two never appeared. The investigated journalist was Richard Justice.
According to my newsroom sources at the Washington Post all said Sports Editor George Solomon killed part two of the series without explanation.
The Washington Post investigation was inspired by my commentary in the Afro-American Newspaper titled “The Two Faces of John Thompson.”
John Thompson also lied about how he stared down and backed drug dealer Rayful Edmonds into a corner when he met with him to talk about his involvement with Georgetown players!
There is a BIG lie on the Internet that claims Big Bad John told Rayful that “If you don’t stay away from my players (Alonzo Morning and John Turner) I will have you killed.” If you believe John Thompson said that, you also believe Jason Whitlock’s story of how Big John changed the face of college basketball!
I spoke with the late DC Police Chief Maurice Turner who said that was not the case. He said, “When John was meeting with Edmonds he called me every hour on the hour to make sure I would have a police present to protect him. He was scared to death.”
I have not forgotten the Nike deal that he carved out at my expense.
I was the first ever Nike Sports and Marketing Representative hired here in the DC metro area. As a rep my role was to outfit the different athletes, media, entertainers and politicians with the Nike brand. In other words I gave away Nike apparel.
Once I became established as the Nike rep I contacted my college coach the legendary Clarence Bighouse Gaines of Winston-Salem State about wearing the Nike brand. But he had an on-going deal with the great and legendary coach John McLendon. Coach McLendon was a rep for Converse.
I then took the same proposal to the campus of Georgetown for my good friend John Thompson to look over. Remember this is the same brother I gave 5 minutes to promote Georgetown basketball every Monday on Inside Sports.
He looked over the proposal and said he would get back to me. I left the campus and started the walk back to the Nike store which was just a few minutes from the campus. When I arrived at the store I had received a telephone call from my Nike boss John Phillips.
I returned his call to the home office in Portland, Oregon only to discover my friend John Thompson had called to cut his own deal!
John Thompson is truly a backstabber in every sense of the word. His loyalty is only to himself!
The changes that he put me through are nothing compared to the changes he put his family though. You will never see or hear “The Real Warrior” his ex-wife Gwen who is responsible for holding the family together. I was in attendance at their wedding.
Gwen is the real “Undercover Boss” of the family and she is totally responsible for the three children turning out to be decent human beings.
When she filed for divorce “Big John” became a stalker hiding behind trees outside of her resident trying to intimidate her. It got so bad one of her close friends had her lawyer call me to advise her on how to proceed against his bullying tactics.
The last thing he wanted to do was go to court where all his skeletons would come out his closet.
My advice was to stay the course and keep the courthouse as a vehicle for an out of court settlement. He settled out of court.
Ronnie Thompson his youngest son a Comcast Sportscaster is named after his father’s former “Best friend” Ronnie Watts. Ronnie is a native Washintonian and played basketball at Wilson High School and Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC.
He played several years in the NBA with the Boston Celtics. Ronnie and Bill Russell were great friends and were often seen in television commercials together. He disappeared without a trace, it was rumored that John put him in a financial trick bag.
You will never hear or see his “Bagman” James Wiggins who served as John’s right hand man for the Urban Coalition Basketball Summer League. Wiggin’s hands are just as dirty as John’s.
Rumor has it that these two parted ways because one of the bags of cash came up missing.
David Falk is still operating out of Georgetown for John Thompson III so that means little has change—Son like Father! The more things change the more they remain the same.
John’s old friend Sandy Freeman at a recent high school alumni picnic told me he had a recent conversation with John and he said, “Harold Bell holds a grudge too long.”
My response, “I have forgiven but I have not forgotten!”
*A journey, rather than an event
*A form of remembering
*An act of empowerment
* The result of a conscious decision
more than an emotion
*A denouncing of the wrongful act
*Making right what can be fixed and
letting go what cannot
*An acknowledgement of the intrinsic
worth of the offender
* A gift, rather than a burden
FORGIVENESS IS NOT
*Excusing what happen
* Tolerating continue wrongdoing
*Denying our anger
*Letting people off the hook
* Saying “It does not matter”
*Feeling an emotional “Love” for the
* Something that can be willed
Jason Whitlock and Grant Hill both over re-acted to the Fab Five documentary if they had listen closely to Jalen Rose they would have heard him say “I was jealous.” Case closed.