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Today we feature two guys who put together hall of fame careers in their respective sports at the center position - Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Otto of Oakland Raiders Fame, and Basketball Hall of Famer Wes Unseld of The Baltimore/Washington Bullets.
Episode Segments:
Sports and Torts: Wes Unseld

Wes spent his entire NBA career with the Baltimore/Capital/Washington Bullets, and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1988 & was named to the NBA's 50 All Time Greatest Players List. Along with Wilt Chamberlain , he's the only basketball player named both Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player
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Sports and Torts: Jim Otto

Hall of Fame Center Jim Otto gave up a lot because of his time in the NFL, including one of his legs. But given the chance, hed do it all again. He talks about his career, and what the league could and should be doing for former players of his era.
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Guest(s) Appearing on this Episode
Wes Unseld
Unseld starred for the Seneca High School team that won Kentucky state championships in 1963 and 1964. At the University of Louisville in 1965, he played center for the school's freshman team, averaging 35.8 points and 23.6 rebounds over 14 games. Unseld lettered for Louisville as a sophomore (1965-66), junior (1966-67), and senior (1967-68), scored 1,686 points (20.6 average) and grabbed 1,551 rebounds (18.9 average) over 82 games. He led the Missouri Valley Conference in rebounding all three years. Unseld earned NCAA All-American honors in 1967 and 1968 and led Louisville to a 6022 record during his collegiate career, making trips to the NIT tournament in 1966 and NCAA tournament in 1967 and 1968. Unseld was drafted by the Kentucky Colonels in the 1968 American Basketball Association draft and was drafted second overall in the first round by the Baltimore Bullets in 1968,[1] and helped lead the Bullets (who had finished in last place in the Eastern division the previous year) to a 5725 record and a division title. Unseld averaged 18.2 rebounds per game that year, and became only the second player ever to win both Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player in the same season (Wilt Chamberlain being the first). Unseld was also named the Sporting News MVP that year. He was one of the best defensive players of his era, and in 1975, he led the NBA in rebounding. The following season, he led the NBA in field goal percentage with a .561 percentage. Famed for his rebounding, bone-jarring picks and ability to ignite a fast break with his crisp, accurate outlet passes, Unseld made up for his lack of size (67) with brute strength and sheer determination. Unseld took the Bullets franchise to four NBA Finals, and won the championship in 1978 over the Seattle SuperSonics, in which he was named the Finals MVP. He ended his playing career following the 19801981 season, and his #41 jersey was retired by the Bullets shortly thereafter. In 984 NBA games all with the Bullets Unseld averaged a double-double, with averages of 10.8 points and 14.0 rebounds per game, as well as 3.9 assists per game, averaging over 36 minutes played per game. Unseld was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1988, and in 1996, he was named as one of the NBA's 50 Greatest Players of all time. After his retirement in 1981, he moved into a front office position with the Bullets, where he served as vice president for six years before being named head coach in 1987. He resigned following the 1994 season with a 202345 record (.369). Unseld became Washington's general manager in 1996 and guided the team to the playoffs once during his tenure.

More About Wes

Jim Otto
Some people say that playing on the offensive line has no glory. But its difficult to imagine any one player dominating the honors at one position more completely than Jim Otto did both in the American Football League and in the National Football League from 1960 through 1974. The Wausau, Wisconsin, native joined the newly founded Oakland Raiders in 1960 and, for the next 15 seasons, he was the only starting center the Raiders ever had. He was one of only three players who saw action in each of his teams 140 regular season games over the AFLs ten-year history, and he played with such skill that in its entire history, the AFL never had another all-league center. Otto, who starred as a center and linebacker at the University of Miami in Florida, won All-AFL acclaim 10 straight seasons. He was All-NFL in 1970 and 1971, and then earned second-team All-NFL honors in 1972. Not surprisingly, he was named to the all-time All-AFL team following the 1969 season. During his 15-year career, he participated in each of the nine AFL All-Star games that were played and in the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl the first three seasons that postseason classic was scheduled. Jim never missed a game. When he retired following the 1974 season, he had started in 210 straight games in regular season but had played in 308 games as a Raider. During that period, the Raiders, who had once been AFL doormats, rose to prominence. Oakland won seven divisional championships in an eight-year period from 1967 through 1974. The 1967 Raiders became AFL champions and played against the NFLs Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl II. Throughout this time span, Otto was a tower of strength as the anchor of the Raiders' talented offensive line.

Jim's Career Stats