Born: March 19, 1930, Los Angeles, California (United States)
Died: June 10, 2012, Los Angeles, California (United States)
Gene Selznick is perhaps the most talented volleyball player ever. He played the game with a cocky arrogance that found him with just as many fans as enemies. Selznick didn't restrict himself to one facet of the game. He could play offense and defense on both the sand and the hard court.
Bursting onto the scene in 1951, Selznick was quick to showcase his entire arsenal. He was selected USVBA First Team All-American in 1951, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, and 1965. He was the USVBA MVP in 1959, 1960, and 1962. He was also on the USVBA Open Championship team in 1951, 1953, 1960 and 1965.
In 1956 Selznick became the first American to be selected All-World following the World Championships in Paris. When he came back to the states he took it upon himself to introduce the world most advanced systems of play and international rules to American volleyball. In addition to those games he also played on the1960 World Championships Team and the Pan-Am Games Team in 1955 and 1959.
Selznick also won countless tournaments on the beaches of California, including every Laguna Beach Open from 1955 to 1961. He was also responsible for introducing Wilt Chamberlain to the game of volleyball when he took him on the national barnstorming tour in the 70's. Both on and off the court Selznick left a legacy that will always be remembered.