Fats Jenkins biography

Fats Jenkins

Basketball Player

1898 – 1968


Who was Fats Jenkins?

Clarence Reginald "Fats" Jenkins was an African American professional baseball and basketball player from about 1920 to 1940 when both professional sports were racially segregated. Primarily he played left field in baseball's Negro Leagues, and point guard for the barnstorming New York Renaissance on the hardwood, where he was also team captain.

Jenkins was born in New York City where he played basketball for the St. Christopher's Club youth team and then for the first teams that were named "Colored Basketball World's Champions" by the New York Age in 1917, 1918 and 1919. Next he played for the top team of the early 1920s, Cum Posey's Loendi Big Five based in Pittsburgh, and for the New York Renaissance, the last of the Colored World Champions in 1925. From that season through 1939 he captained the "Rens", whom the Basketball Hall of Fame inducted collectively in 1963. In the 1939-40 season Fats captained the powerful Chicago Crusaders which included his old Rens teammate David "Big Dave" DeJernett as well as future Ren BrickTop Wright. The all-black Crusaders were said to be "sidestepped" from the Chicago World's Pro Tourney that spring, perhaps because Jenkins and Wright had abruptly left the team in a huff over giving sparkplug Agis Bray sufficient playing time,


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Jan 10, 1898
New York City
  • African American
Dec 6, 1968

on July 23, 2013

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