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Wataru Misaka

Wataru Misaka is the first non-Caucasian player in professional basketball. He was drafted in 1947 by the New York Knicks. Born in 1923 Misaka grew up poor in Ogden, Utah and went to high school at a time when Japanese Americans lived segregated lives. He played basketball in high school and led his team to a state championship in 1940.

Misaka first attended Weber College where he led the team to two championships and then played for the University of Utah where he led the team to an NCAA tournament title. Following college, the New York Knicks drafted Misaka. He played three games before being cut. Then Misaka returned to university and eventually became an electrical engineer.


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