Brad Daugherty Rumors
11 Jan 15
23 Mar 14
23 Aug 13
But these days, Daugherty seems far removed from basketball and is known for something else. Daugherty was at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet over the weekend to provide in-studio NASCAR analysis for ESPN on the STP 300 Nationwide race. A guy like Daugherty, who towers over everyone he meets, gets asked one question more than most: What’s a 7-foot former No. 1 NBA draft pick doing at the racetrack and what could he possibly know about motorsports?
Daugherty became a race team owner in 1988 when he was still playing with the Cleveland Cavaliers and put together a Busch series team (in the days before it was the Nationwide series). In the team’s fourth race, Daugherty’s team won a race at Orange County Speedway. Then, Daugherty moved into the Camping World Truck Series and hired drivers Kenny Irwin Jr. and Kevin Harvick. Now, that team has morphed into JTG Daugherty Racing and they have a car in the Sprint Cup Series in Bobby Labonte’s No. 47 Toyota Camry. And he’s on NASCAR’s rules and competitions committee in addition to doing his television work. “I knew I needed to do (television analysis) for a lot of reasons,” Daugherty said. “If I didn’t accept the opportunity, being an African-American male, then there might not be an opportunity for someone else like me to do it.”
Daugherty’s father raced cars at a short-track about eight miles from their house, and Daugherty started working on cars at a young age. The biggest sport in that region of North Carolina was auto racing. “We’d build small cars and take them to the track,” Daugherty said. “Racing was the other sport we had in our community and in our lives. I got better at basketball, but I always loved racing.” So it is obvious that Daugherty’s first love wasn’t basketball. He said he didn’t “fall in love” with basketball until he was a sophomore at North Carolina, playing alongside Jordan and under head coach Dean Smith.
Brad Daugherty is probably one of the few people who can get away with telling Michael Jordan, of all people, that his NBA team stinks. “I told him, ‘You guys are terrible,’ ” Daugherty said of Jordan’s team, the Charlotte Bobcats. “But I see what he’s trying to do and it takes time. He’s really focused and driven and very stubborn, and he believes in things.”