PEEKING INTO THE PAST – Johnny Watkins, a member of WSSU team with Earl ‘The Pearl’ Monroe

Published 2:30 pm Tuesday, February 16, 2021

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Johnny Watkins was two years younger than his brother Curtis, but was he also a star player on the West Badin championship teams of 1961-62.

Johnny finished out his high school career in 1964 and earned a scholarship to play for legendary basketball coach Clarence “Big House” Gaines at Winston Salem State University.

As a junior at WSSU, Johnny teamed with future NBA star Earl “the Pearl” Monroe to lead Winston Salem State to the
1967 national championship in basketball. That same year, Johnny played golf for the CIAA Champion golf team at WSSU.

Johnny Watkins

Johnny finished his basketball career at WSSU as one of their all-time leaders in field goal percentage.

Johnny Watkins passed away in 1991. In 1992, he was inducted posthumously into the Winston-Salem State Sports Hall of Fame as a member of the 1967 Championship basketball team and was inducted into the Stanly County Sports Hall of Fame in 2008.

{Lewis Bramlett – Stanly County Historical Society}