Will Block for Peace in Sudan

28 12 2009

I had a good time with the American people.  I hope they remember me as a good guy who played hard. I wasn’t Michael Jordan, but I was somebody called Manute Bol

NAME:  Manute Bol  (TRANSLATION: “A Special Blessing”)

HEIGHT: 7 feet 7 inches

WEIGHT: 220 lbs  (“Manute Bol is so skinny, his team saves money on road trips. They just fax him from city to city.” – Woody Allen)


PHOTOS: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/multimedia/photo_gallery/1005/manute.bol.photos/content.1.html

D.O.B.: October 16, 1962

Manute Bol is a pioneer and a portrait of a person who has used sports as an outlet and ultimately a platform to bring awareness to global issues, particularly the violence and civil unrest in Sudan.

After being discovered as a teenager in Africa by a US coach from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Manute Bol was brought to the USA, and eventually made his way onto the roster of the 1985 Washington Bullets. He was a starting center in most of his games, enjoying a 10-year career and earning approximately $7 Million in salary (1.65M in ’92).  As the tallest player in the league’s history at the time, he also received endorsement deals from Nike, Kodak Films, KFC, and Toyota.

NBA Career Highlights

1986 NBA All Defensive 2nd Team

All time leader in blocks per minute – .176

2,086 career blocks  – Manute has blocked more shots than he’s made (665)

Career Average of 3.3 blocks per game.   He once blocked 11 shots in one half.  He also recorded 8 blocks in one quarter twice during his career!

Manute’s Roots

Manute Bol was born in a remote village in south Sudan and growing up he saw his nation’s civil war take the lives of more than 2 million people over 15 years.

Southern Sudan is the home of the Dinkas, the tallest people in the world and Bol’s tribe.  It is also home to the Sudanese People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) , a rebel group to which Bol previously backed and contributed millions of dollars.

Both during his NBA career and after, Bol has worked towards achieving peace in his divided nation where in the south Christian rebels battle a northern Islamic government, based in Khartoum.  He has often lobbied for US Support and UN Peacekeeping to step in and stop the violence.

Note:  A few years ago, after a movement toward peace was proposed by the northern Muslims, and then rejected by SPLA, Bol renounced his direct involvement with both parties, and now works independent of both to rebuild communities for children.

Bol established many foundations including the Ring True Foundation, a charitable organization dedicated to raising money for Sudanese refugees and for Sudan’s schools and clinics, and Sudan Sunrise.

To assist these causes, Bol has participated in several rather comical sports-related events, including becoming a member of Indiana’s professional hockey team, the Indianapolis Ice, appearing in Fox’s Celebrity Boxing against William Refrigerator Perry, even become a horse jockey.

“We are trying to raise some money to get a school and a clinic for my country. It’s been very hard since I got hurt. It’s hard to raise money. It is my dream to get some schools, good education and clinics for our people.”

Pictures, Video Interview, and Prank with Charles Barkley after the jump…
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A Basketball Revolution: Hoops India

9 12 2009

Take a look at this high quality video production put together by Hoops India. Seems like the youth in India are starting to fight for some respect in basketball! We love it, We need it! Go Hoops India!!