Friday, September 2, 2011


My family was raised on basketball, the game put food in 7 kids mouths. Both of my parents were star high school basketball players. After high school my dad made the House of David basketball team. He managed his own team and another barnstorm mens basketball team. The American Indians that he owned and coached. He played basketball during his tour in World War II. When he returned to the states he started The Texas Cowgirls female basketball team in Chicago. He was peers with Abe Saperstein owner of, The Harlem Globetrotters also from Chicago (not NY as many people think). My dad had toured with the Globetrotters when he was a House of David basketball team member. My dad's Texas Cowgirls would come to do the same (tour with the Globetrotters) . My dad also started the Harlem Chicks basketball team and the Harlem Queens basketball team. All three women's teams played against men. The Texas Cowgirls were on the NBA rosters in the first decades playing the opening games arranged by Eddie Gottlieb, requested by Joe Lapchick and Red Auerbach and others.
My mom turned down a full college scholarship after graduating from high school to try out for the Texas Cowgirls. She made the team married my dad a few years later . She continued to play until she was in her mid thirties as the mother of seven children. Two of my aunts played women's barnstorm pro basketball. All were high school basketball all stars, as was my uncle. My sister played on the Texas Cowgirls. My brothers were all excellent ball players and that has carried on with another generation of children, nieces and nephews.
Growing up our home was always filled with basketball players. We had bunk beds in our basement for them to sleep in and shared our dining room table with dozens of players. We grew up as road warriors. Goose Tatum and Marquis Haynes of the Trotters and had their own teams were also part of my child hood. We could not have enough TV'S in our home with seven children and an open door to all of the athletes wanting to watch their favorite teams, sports blared throughout every room. My dad built a lit four hoop court in our backyard. High School, College, Pro,Barnstorming, and retired players were all on that court at some time.My mom successfully taking on all of them. My mom and dad both coached on teams and played as well as owned teams. Our garage was filled floor to ceiling with Converse and Spaulding ,boxes full of uniforms and equipment. My brother was a color commentator for basketball on radio. I made the boys team as the only girl in my school in the sixties and my niece played on the boys team for the Boys Club when they still separated the girls from the boys only a few years ago, still hard for me to believe. I have a great niece and my cousins daughter who have enough talent to make it to the WNBA . The love of basketball and interest in it's history came by osmosis from my families namesake as trailblazers and participants in the sport.  My mom and two of her sister were trailblazers playing women's professional basketball in the 40s-50-60s.
Author: The Hovland Factor: Dempsey Hovland- 
Cowgirls of Another Kind: The World Famous Texas 
Cowgirls Basketball Team 
Dempsey and Satchel

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