From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Averitt, William Rodney "Bird"

(born: 1952) 

William R. Averitt, known as "Bird," was the nation's leading college basketball scorer during the 1972-73 season, averaging 33.9 points per game at Pepperdine University. In 1971, he had broken the freshman scoring record three times, including his highest one-game score of 59 points when Pepperdine beat Chapman College [source: "Former Hoptown All-Stater: 'Bird' Averitt scores 59 breaking his own record at Pepperdine." Kentucky New Era, 1/16/1973, p. 13(on microfilm, Young Library Periodicals]. Other Kentuckians on the Pepperdine freshman team were Tom Johnson and George Wilson from Union County High School.

Averitt, a 6' 1", left-handed shooting guard from Hopkinsville, had been an All-State player at Hopkinsville High School. He was a star basketball player at both the high school and college level. 

After his junior year at Pepperdine, Averitt was drafted by the San Antonio Spurs, then an ABA team. He played three years in the ABA, including his stint as a member of the 1975 championship team, the Kentucky Colonels. When the ABA and the NBA merged, Averitt was drafted by the Buffalo Braves form whom he played for a little over a year before joining the Brooklyn Nets for the rest of the 1977-78 season. In total, William R. Averitt played five years of professional basketball. 

For more see J. Crowe, "For Ex-Pepperdine basketball star William "Bird" Averitt sky was the limit," Los Angeles Times, 1/25/2010; Bird Averitt at; William "Bird" Averitt at the American Basketball Association Players website; and William 'Bird' Averitt, member of Kentucky Colonels ABA title team, dies,, 12/12/2020.


Kentucky County & Region

Read about Christian County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Union County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Hopkinsville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name

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NKAA Source: The Los Angeles times (newspaper)

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“Averitt, William Rodney "Bird",” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed July 19, 2024,

Last modified: 2023-03-17 17:39:26