Fabulous 50: Ed Leftwich

Ed leftwich, First African American Freshman Awarded a Basketball Scholarship at NC State

Ed leftwich, First African American Freshman Awarded a Basketball Scholarship at NC State

Ed Leftwich was recruited to the men's basketball team 50 years ago in 1968. The native of Burlington, NJ, became the first African American freshman to receive a basketball scholarship at NC State.

For 3 seasons, Leftwich was a crucial member of the Wolfpack team under Coach Norm Sloan.  In an 8 Dec. 1969 game against Atlantic Christian College, he scored 43 points, making it the best record at that time for a Wolfpack player in a single game.  Needless-to-say, NC State won that game, 139-78.

Leftwich may be best remembered for his performance at the end of the ACC Championship game against South Carolina on 7 Mar. 1970.  The game was tied 35-35 at the end of regulation play and went into double-overtime.  With NC State trailing by 1 point and 23 seconds remaining on the clock, Leftwich stole the ball from South Carolina, sped down the court, scored, and pushed the Wolfpack into its final lead.  (Seconds later 2 free-throws by Rick Anheuser guaranteed a win of 42-39, the first of Norm Sloan's three ACC Championships.)

Additional information about Ed Leftwich can be found on the Gopack website.  More information on the history of men's basketball history at NC State can be found on the NCSU Libraries Rare & Unique Digital Collections website.