Travion Kirkendoll has found the opportunity of a lifetime … his lifetime.
Kirkendoll, a native of Campti, La. and one of the greatest players in Centenary men’s basketball history, is one of the newest members of “The Original Harlem Globetrotters”. Kirkendoll, who played for the Gents from 2014-18, was named to the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference’s 30th Anniversary men’s basketball team last spring and is the league’s all-time leading scorer, amassing 1,919 career points.
“I had never actually thought about being a part of the “World Famous Harlem Globetrotters” before this opportunity presented itself, but it was everything I was praying for,” said Kirkendoll.
“What the Globetrotters stand for, aside from being ambassadors of goodwill, align with who I am in my faith and as a man. So, when the chance presented itself, not joining the organization never crossed my mind. To be able to travel the world and play basketball in tons of new places, where family and friends can travel to see me, is the greatest feeling ever.”
A four-time All-SCAC performer – three times recognized as First Team – and Co-Newcomer-of-the-Year in 2014-15, Kirkendoll was the first player in league history (and remains one of only two players) to earn First Team all-conference honors as a freshman. His career scoring average of 18.10 points per game is third in league history and he also finished with 622 rebounds, 313 assists and 199 steals (sixth all-time in SCAC history).
A two-time SCAC All-Tournament honoree, his 19.86 points per game scoring average in conference tournament play is the second-best in league history among those who have played in five or more games. Kirkendoll earned D3hoops.com All-South Region honors in both 2015-16 and 2017-18.
“The most that I knew about the Globetrotters growing up and at Centenary was the Scooby Doo episode that featured them. Then, one night after finding out a Centenary Alum (Herbert Lang) was also a Globetrotter, I decided to go watch some videos and was blown away by their skills with a basketball.”
Herbert “Flight Time” Lang played for the Gents from 1994-98 and ranks #22 all-time in Centenary history in scoring (1,249 points) and scored the 10th-most points in a single game in program history when he poured in 41 versus Southeastern Louisiana on Jan. 25, 1997. Lang, a Brinkley, Ark. native, was invited to join the Globetrotters in 1999 and has had a successful career, even appearing multiple times on the CBS hit show The Amazing Race.
“Herbert “Flight Time” Lang is definitely a great mentor and friend of mine,” said Kirkendoll. “He’s the greatest ever. He’s paved the way for me in many aspects of my life, and I’m very grateful for him.”
Kirkendoll credits his time at Centenary for preparing him for this great opportunity.
“I tell everyone that God leading me to Centenary was the best thing to ever happen to me. Playing under Coach Adam Walsh and Coach Chris Dorsey helped me learn who I was, who I wasn’t and what I wanted out of myself in life. A lot of my learning came from my failures, and that made me resilient. That resilience and mentality to win I MUST credit to Coach Dorsey.”
Kirkendoll said those Scooby Doo memories as a child and knowing Lang were his only connection to the worldwide phenomenon and he did not see them in person until late last year.
“This is actually a funny story. I only recall attending one game, and that was in Winchester, Va. on August 30, 2021, which was exactly three months before signing to play for them on November 30, 2021.”
A month after signing with the team, Kirkendoll made his debut with the Globetrotters on Dec. 26, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pa. at PPG Paints Arena. What a feeling it must have been for Kirkendoll, likely the greatest feeling ever.
Read more about “The Original Harlem Globetrotters” here: https://www.harlemglobetrotters.com/