NCAA, NBA & Sportscasting Legendvisit Bill Walton's Blog
Born in La Mesa, California, in 1952, William Theodore Walton, III (Bill) began playing basketball in fourth grade and asserted his dominance in high school where his team won the California Interscholastic Federation High School title two years in a row. He became the first and only high school player to ever make the USA Senior Men’s National Basketball Team and play in the World Championship and/or Olympics.
Walton enrolled at UCLA in 1970 where he played center for the legendary John Wooden and was a member of two NCAA championship teams and a three-time recipient of the NCAA Player of the Year Award – in 1972, '73 and '74. At UCLA, Walton was a three-time All-American College Player and a scholar-athlete who also earned Academic All-American honors three years in a row.
In 1974, Walton was selected first in the NBA Draft by the Portland Trailblazers, with whom he played four years, winning an NBA Championship in 1977. He went on to play for three more teams, winning another Championship in 1986 with the Boston Celtics, before retiring in 1990 due to several recurring injuries.
Walton won numerous MVP awards during his illustrious career in which he compiled 6,215 points and 4,923 rebounds, was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 1993, and was named one of the NBA's 50 greatest players of all time in 1997.
Following his playing career, Walton began an equally successful broadcasting career in 1990. He was nominated for several Emmy awards and, in 2001, won an Emmy for best live sports television broadcast. In 2009, Walton was named one of the top-50 broadcasters of all time by the American Sportscasters Association. That same year, Walton retired from broadcasting due to chronic back problems dating back to an injury suffered while playing at UCLA.
Walton currently resides in San Diego with his wife and four sons.