After starring at a Berkeley playground, Don Barksdale was recruited to Marin JC and then to UCLA, where he was an All-American basketball player. He earned gold medals with the 1948 U.S. Olympic Team and in the Pan American Games of 1951. In that year, the 28-year-old rookie joined the Baltimore Bullets. Barksdale was the first African-American selected for the NBA All-Star game (January 13, 1953). Injured ankles ended his career with the Boston Celtics in 1955. In 1982, Barksdale created Save School Sports in the Bay Area, which has provided hundreds of thousands of dollars for prep athletics.
Inducted into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame in 1996.
Plaque location: Oakland Coliseum