Nevada Sports Net's G.O.A.T bracket challenge will unveil the greatest sports figure in Northern Nevada's history piece by piece over the next several weeks. Here is a description of the entire project, which is an NCAA Tournament-style bracket of the 64 greatest athletes and coaches from Northern Nevada. Readers will get to vote on one matchup every day with a 24-hour voting period until we crown a champion. You can vote on today's matchup on the Twitter poll linked at the bottom of this article.
Round of 32 matchup: No. 2 Marion Motley vs. No. 10: Shawn Estes
Marion Motley's bio: Motley grew up in Canton, Ohio and starred at Canton McKinley High in basketball and football, where his team posted a 25-3 record during his tenure. ... He played for South Carolina State College before transferring to Nevada in 1940 where he played three seasons before suffering a knee injury and dropping out of school in 1943. ... A powerful blocker and tackler at 6-1 and 240 pounds, Motley's statistics from his time at Nevada are largely unknown, but his 105-kick return for a touchdown in 1941 remains tied for a school record. ... While Motley was at Nevada, a Reno reporter wrote "in Marion Motley, the ball club has one of the best backs in the entire nation." ... He was inducted in the U.S. Navy in 1944 during World War II and played on a station football team coached by future Pro Hall of Famer Paul Brown. ... After the war, Motley followed Brown to the Cleveland Browns of the AAFC. ... He played nine seasons of pro football and was one of four men who broke the pro football color barrier, doing so in 1946 seven months before Jackie Robinson broke MLB's color barrier. ... Motley was a four-time AAFC champion (1946-49) and one-time NFL champ (1950). ... A two-time All-Pro, Motley rushed for 4,720 yards, 5.7 yards per carry and scored 43 touchdowns in his career. ... He led the league in rushing two seasons (once in the AAFC and once in the NFL). ... Motley was named to the NFL's 1940s All-Decade Team, the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team, the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team (one of 12 running backs to make the cut). ... He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1968, becoming the second black enshrined into the Hall of Fame. ... Motley is the only former Wolf Pack athlete to be inducted into the Hall of Fame of one of the big four sports. ... Motley was inducted in Nevada's inaugural 13-person Hall of Fame class in 1973 and his No. 41 is retired by the Wolf Pack football program.
Shawn Estes' bio: Born in San Bernardino, Calif., Estes moved to Northern Nevada during his youth and starred for Douglas High as a two-way baseball standout. ... During his senior season, the left-hander posted a 0.79 ERA and struck out 141 batters in 61.2 innings pitched. ... He also hit .488 with eight homers and was named the Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year. ... Committed to Stanford, Estes was the 11th pick in the 1991 MLB draft by the Seattle Mariners and turned pro. That 11th overall pick is tied for the highest a local athlete has been drafted straight out of high school (Hug's Rod Scurry was the No. 11 pick in the 1974 draft). ... Estes was traded from Seattle to San Francisco in 1995 in exchange for Salomon Torres and made his big-league debut that season. ... Estes stuck at the big-league level for good in 1996 and became an All-Star in 1997 when he went 19-5 with a 3.18 ERA while striking out a career-high 181 batters that season. ... Estes is one of only two Northern Nevada high school baseball players to make an All-Star game, joining Matt Williams. ... Estes logged 13 MLB seasons with seven teams, spending the most time with the Giants, where he played for seven seasons. ... Estes posted a career 101-93 record and 4.71 ERA, striking out 1,210 batters in 1678.1 innings pitched. ... He leads local players in career wins, strikeouts and innings pitched and is second in career WAR (10.4) behind Williams. ... Estes pitched in the playoffs in 1997 and 2000, posting a 10.50 ERA in two starts. ... He also was one of the better hitting pitches in his career, batting .159 with four homers and 28 RBIs. ... In 2000, he became the first Giants pitcher to hit a grand slam since Monte Kennedy in 1949. ... One of Estes' most memorable big-league moments came in 2002 when he was tasked with trying to bean Roger Clemens after Clemens had drilled Mike Piazza. Estes threw about a foot behind Clemens but made up for it later in the game by cracking a two-run homer off the Rocket. ... Estes earned a plaque on the San Francisco Giants Wall of Fame in 2010 and was inducted into the NIAA Hall of Fame in 2016. He also is in the Douglas High Hall of Fame. ... Estes currently is a broadcaster for the San Francisco Giants and has done some color commentator for the Reno Aces.
You can vote via the Twitter poll below.