The date was Saturday, December 9, 1978. The place was the Milwaukee Arena in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The event was a basketball game, but not just any basketball game. The importance of this event was phenomenal. The game was about to make history as the first basketball game of the first Womens Professional Basketball League (WBL) in the United States. A massive crowd of 7,824 fans was there to watch the historic event. The event was also a significant historical event for the people of Huntsville, Madison County, Alabama because one of the players on the roster of the Milwaukee Does team was the first woman from the state of Alabama to become a professional athlete: Brenda Gail Pitts. Brenda Pitts was born on Saturday, December 4, 1954 in Huntsville and grew up there. Her parents, J.P. and Lillian Pitts, said she was always active and athletic since the day she was born. She participated in many sports throughout middle school, high school, college, and professional. Her natural athletic abilities allowed her to become an accomplished athlete. Her family provided the significant encouragement and support to participate. And her innate competitive spirit provided her with the drive to excel in one sport in particular, the sport in which she etched a page in Alabama history and for which she is inducted to this hall of fame basketball. As a young toddler, Brenda spent thousands of hours with her basketball. It paid off when in 1966 in the 6th grade she joined the basketball team at Big Cove Junior High School. The hours of shooting certainly paid off. Not only did she become the scoring sensation for the team, in her very first game Brenda scored 27 points! Brenda led the team to 4 winning seasons and 4 championships before being recruited to Madison County High School. Her success and leadership continued throughout high school. She led the Tigers to 3 winning seasons and championships. Every year Brenda set scoring records and broke them. In the 6th grade she averaged 17 points per game and the average went up every year. In her senior year at Madison County High School, she averaged a phenomenal 36 points per game. Other records set and yet to be broken include: a game high of 53 points in her junior year and a record 23 of 25 free throws in one game in her senior year. Each year, Brenda accumulated awards, some of which include 7 All County Awards, 6 All City Awards, 2 All State Awards, 2 All Tournament Awards, 4 Most Valuable Player-County Awards, 2 Most Valuable Player-State Awards, 3 Varsity Letters in basketball, and the Most Outstanding Female Athlete Award of the school. Beyond high school and Madison County came college. Brenda was recruited to play for the University of Alabama and was one of the first female athletes to receive an athletic scholarship in the history of the university and the state. She played four years for Bama and continued to lead the team and to set some records. As had always happened, Brendas skill and leadership soon influenced the team to winning seasons. She eventually became the starting point guard and led the team in assists. The local newspapers wrote about her expert ball handling and passing wizardry on the court. She became an expert of the fast break and the papers soon dubbed her the Snowbird Queen When her four years came to a close, she again had left her mark on womens basketball at the University of Alabama and in the state. Some of the records and awards included varsity letters, first Bama team to score over 100 points in a game, Co-Captain and Captain, Most Valuable Player, top ten in points scored, field goals made, free throws made, rebounds and games played. There was only one thing left to doprofessional basketball. It didnt happen until one year after Brenda finished college, but it happened. And in 1978 Brenda became one of the first women to be a professional basketball athlete in the country and from the state of Alabama. She played for a year and a half and then gave it up to return to coach high school. Brenda says that perhaps one of the most meaningful moments of her sports life came when another historically significant event for Brenda took place: Madison County High School presented her with her original high school uniform and officially retired the number 30 in honor of her basketball career. There is another way that Brenda has affected womens basketball in Alabama and the country. Using a basketball one inch smaller in circumference in the professional league, Brenda realized that women should have a ball custom made for their hand size. She saw the positive improvement in performance. Back in college working on a doctorate, the ball became the subject of her dissertation research. While conducting the study with high school and college teams around the state, Brenda found that the players wanted the ball. She pressed the Alabama high school association to adopt it because she knew it was just a matter of time before everyone would use it. Her study became one of two studies used by rules committees around the country to determine if the switch should be made. Today, the womens basketball is used everywhere. Currently Dr. Brenda G. Pitts is a Professor of Sport Business at the University of Louisville and is also the Chairperson of the Department of Health Promotion, Physical Education, and Sport Studies. She is still involved in sports. She participates in soccer, basketball, volleyball, running, softball, boating, and golf. Brenda attributes her career and sports success to the forces in her young life including her parents, J.P. and Lillian Pitts, and brothers, Gary Pitts and Troy Pitts.