Big House, The Pearl & The Triumph of Winston-Salem State, Voiced by NBA All-Star and Winston-Salem Native Chris Paul, Debuts Thursday, Feb. 11 at 7:00 PM, ET on CBS Sports Network
CBS Sports will feature Black athletes – including Earl “The Pearl” Monroe, Josh Gibson, Cheryl Miller, Alice Coachman, Doug Williams, Maurice Ashley and others – to celebrate Black History Month as the network debuts new original programming and vignettes.
CBS Sports Network will air a new documentary on Thursday, Feb. 11 (7:00 PM, ET), Big House, The Pearl & The Triumph of Winston-Salem State, highlighting Monroe and voiced by NBA All-Star and Winston-Salem native Chris Paul, along with a special We Need to Talk With interview on Sunday, Jan. 31 (2:00 PM, ET) with the former Super Bowl-winning quarterback Williams. Additionally, the network will produce animated and regular-footage vignettes featuring Black athletes from over the past century.
“It is imperative that we at CBS Sports, and as an industry, work towards a more diverse and inclusive landscape,” said Harold Bryant, Executive Producer and Executive Vice President, CBS Sports. “Telling these stories of Black athletes is incredibly important, and we are proud that many of our Black employees have the opportunity to lead these productions. These vignettes written, produced and edited by Black CBS Sports employees continue that necessary mission of utilizing our resources in front of and behind the camera to push for more diversity and inclusion.”
Big House, The Pearl & The Triumph of Winston-Salem State (Thursday, Feb.11 at 7:00 PM, ET on CBS Sports Network)
In a time of intense racial turmoil, a star from Philadelphia descended upon a North Carolina teachers college, Winston-Salem State. Earl “The Pearl” Monroe was so spectacular that the Rams had to move from their tiny campus gym to the Winston-Salem Memorial Coliseum so thousands more fans could see him play. As a senior in 1966-67, “The Pearl” averaged 41.5 points per game and helped Winston-Salem State become the first HBCU to win a NCAA championship in any sport (Div. II). In the process, Monroe helped ease racial tensions in the still-segregated Winston-Salem by bringing everyone together to marvel, collectively, at his greatness.
The documentary, voiced by NBA All-Star Chris Paul, features interviews with Monroe; teammates including Eugene Smiley and Ernest Brown, among others; former Wake Forest coach and former CBS Sports analyst Billy Packer; and Head Coach Clarence Gaines’ son, Clarence Gaines II. Produced by Blake Berson with Sammy Smith as Associate Producer.
Celebrating Black Stories Vignettes
Beginning on Monday, Feb. 1, the network will produce vignettes that will air throughout the year on CBS Sports Network. These vignettes, stemming from conversations from members of CBS Sports’ Black Steering Committee, will be researched, written, edited and produced by Black CBS Sports employees from a variety of different departments. Sharán Watson is Coordinating Producer. Abdiel Bermudez, Ade Ellis, Mark Grant, Sanaa Harris, Taylor Ralph, Chinyere Vann, Adrienne Ford, Guy Thomas and Kevin Major produce. A few of the topics include: Cheryl Miller, Greg Gumbel, Maurice Ashley, Makur Maker,and others.
Emilie Deutsch is VP, Original Programming and Features, CBS Sports.