Curly Neal, a Dudley High School graduate, played on the 1961 state basketball championship team and later played college basketball at Johnson C. Smith averaging 23 points a game and leading his team to the CIAA title. In 1963, Neal joined the Harlem Globetrotters which he later turned it into a worldwide phenomenon. As a Globetrotter, he would become known worldwide for his dribbling and shooting skills, eventually playing for 22 seasons and appearing in more than 6,000 games in 97 countries. Neal later served as a motivational speaker for the Globetrotters becoming known as the “Ambassador of Goodwill.” Neal was part of the 2008 North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame class. Neal received a Globetrotters “Legends” ring, and had his number 22 retired.