Is Wilt Chamberlain Really in the Volleyball Hall of Fame?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends about basketball and whether they are true or false. Click here to view an archive of the basketball urban legends featured so far.

BASKETBALL URBAN LEGEND: Wilt Chamberlain is in the Volleyball Hall of Fame.

Wilt Chamberlain was an amazing athlete. Just amazing.

SO amazing that after he retired from playing professional basketball in 1973 (at the age of 36), he began a SECOND career in professional sports!

This time as a professional VOLLEYBALL player!!

Chamberlain began playing volleyball late in life, not until 1969 (when he was 32 years old – he was born in August, so these ages are based on how old he would be at the end of the basketball season).

But after he retired, Chamberlain helped form the International Volleyball Association (IVA) in 1975 as a team owner. He ended up trying to keep the league afloat (as it was a bit of a tough sell to the American public) by becoming a player himself for his team, the Orange County Stars, in 1977!

Chamberlain’s star appeal was great enough that he was able to get the IVA’s All-Star Game televised on NBC!

Sadly, the world was just not yet ready for an international professional co-ed volleyball league, and the league went under in 1979.

For his efforts, though, Chamberlain was inducted into the Volleyball Hall of Fame!

Not many players can say that they are members of TWO different sports Halls of Fame!

The legend is…


Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future urban legends columns! My e-mail address is

Leave a Reply