The First Annual Robert Smith Golf Classic

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By David Jordan Jr

Through adversity and tough times, the character of oneself and the character of those around in various capacitates will be visible to the world. The love and support needed to overcome and achieve is vital to a person’s life everyday. The First Annual Robert Smith Golf Classic, held in Boulder City, Nevada was the ultimate display of championship character, love and support.

UNLV legend and seven year NBA veteran Robert Smith, a graduate of Crenshaw High School in Los Angeles, California was on the receiving end of an assist as friends, family, teammates and supporters came together to raise money for the medical bills Robert has incurred over the last four and a half years. Robert starred at UNLV under legendary coach Jerry Tarkanian, where he was the floor leader and led the team to their first ever NCAA Final Four appearance in 1977.

Smith along with his teammates formed the Hardway Eight, running teams out of the gym with their full court pressure and high octane, fast breaking offense.


During his three years as a “Runnin’ Rebel” Smith led the team in assists and also led the nation in free throw percentage. Upon completion of his college career, Smith was drafted in the third round of the NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets.

Smith played seven years in the NBA before he finished his career playing the game internationally.

Upon retirement from the game, Smith became a fixture in the Las Vegas community as a high school coach and also as a color commentator for the UNLV basketball team.

On October 1st 2019 Robert would suffer a debilitating stroke that would foster the need for extensive medical care and rehabilitation. The proceeds from the golf classic will go toward Smith’s physical therapy and medical treatments. The love and support of his wife Gloria, their kids, friends and family, and teammates have all played an instrumental role in his recovery since suffering the stroke.

The love shown to Robert and his family was a direct reflection of the love and loyalty he’s shown to not only the Las Vegas community, but to everybody he has come in contact with in his life.

As the play on the course ended, the celebration of Robert would continue as he and everybody that came out celebrated his 69th birthday over dinner, great music and loving fellowship. Additionally the winners of the golf tournament received various prizes that included exclusive Robert Smith UNLV jerseys, signed basketballs and other cash prizes.

The First Annual Robert Smith Golf Classic showed the importance of relationships and friendships in one’s life journey. The aspect of being able to support a friend from the heart is priceless and the faces that were present represented the multitude of people from everywhere that have and will continue to support Robert in his healing and recovery.

Check out images from the classic here:


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One comment on “The First Annual Robert Smith Golf Classic

  • Bill Dickerson , Direct link to comment

    Robert Smith is a good friend of mine and I wish him the best! Please send me info on the next golf tourney!!!

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