Former Harlem Globetrotters star Billy Ray Hobley was posthumously honored by the Globetrotters with the team’s “Legends” award when the Globetrotters played in Hobley’s adopted hometown of New Orleans.
Hobley, who passed away on July 31, 2002, at the age of 48, will be just the 29th person in the Globetrotters’ storied 85-year history to receive the distinction. Nicknamed “Supertrotter,” he was known for his rim-jarring dunks, blazing ball handling and effervescent personality. Hobley traveled around the world the equivalent of six times over 22 seasons for the Globetrotters, the last of which was in 1998.
The 6-8 forward joined the Globetrotters in 1977, after averaging nearly 15 points per contest in 99 career games at Dillard University in New Orleans. Hobley had previously starred at James A. Shanks High School in Quincy, Fla., before moving to New Orleans, where he made his home before his passing.
“Billy Ray could light up any room in the world, and he always had a story to tell you,” said Globetrotters Legend Sweet Lou Dunbar, who also came to the Trotters as a rookie in 1977 and was a teammate of Hobley’s for over 20 years. “The nickname ‘Supertrotter’ fit him perfectly.”
Created in 1993, the “Legends” award is presented to those who have made a contribution outside of basketball and played a role in the development of the Globetrotters brand. A special advisory board and the alumni select the honorees.
Hobley’s commemoration is part of the Globetrotters’ celebration of their 85th consecutive season and the team’s 2011 “4 Times the Fun” World Tour, during which the Globetrotters have once again revolutionized the game of basketball with their new 4-point shot.