Bevo Francis Makes His Mark

This year’s “March Madness” comes to an end on Monday when a new NCAA basketball champion is crowned.  On this week’s SUNDAY SHOWCASE WOSU TV will celebrate the game of basketball with a line-up of programs that really showcase the spirit of the game. One of those stories focuses on the community of Rio Grande, Ohio and their basketball hero.

Clarence “Bevo” Francis played basketball in the early 1950′s for Rio Grande College.  In 1952 Rio Grande College was four buildings and the home court was located in a building with no showers.  Bevo was a stellar performer achieving a NCAA top season scoring average of 48.3 points.  In the documentary THEY COULD REALLY PLAY THE GAME, airing Sunday at 3pm, the focus is on the 1952-53 basketball season and the Rio Grande team that accomplished a nearly impossible feat when they streaked to a perfect 39-0 record.  A pivotal game that season was the January 9th game against Ashland College when Bevo Francis scored 116 points.  Fans packed the small college basketball gym to watch Bevo and his teammates and all of a sudden so did the national media who traveled to Rio Grande to see this rising star.  The Redmen set records, saved their school, and may have saved the game of college basketball.  I hope you’ll tune in or set your DVR for the story of Bevo Francis and his Rio Grande College Redmen.