He also founded its scholastic equivalent, the Sonny Hill League. Many of Philadelphia's schoolboy legends started playing in the Sonny Hill League's junior divisions before they got to high school.
In the years Hill has been preaching basketball, the list of those who have learned from him includes Billy Cunningham, Wilt Chamberlain, Hal Greer, Earl Monroe, Chris Ford, Willis Reed, Chet Walker, Archie Clark, Moses Malone, Bill Melchionni, Fred Carter, Stu Jackson, George McGinnis and Gene Banks.
Hill is a special assistant to Peter Luuko, president and chief executive officer of the CoreStates Spectrum.
He played for the Camden Bullets in the Eastern Basketball League, was a commentator for CBS, and is a weekend talk-radio host on WIP-AM. He also is the color commentator for Temple men's basketball on WRTI-FM.
``Sonny is an incredible basketball and community resource,'' Croce said in a statement.
OFF TO CAMP. The 76ers invited their four draft choices, two free agents from Villanova, and veteran Rex Walters to next week's minicamp.
Villanova's Eric Eberz and Jonathan Haynes will be among 16 players at the camp, at Community College of Philadelphia from Tuesday through Thursday.
The Sixers will have a team of their camp participants in the Doral Arrowwood Summer League. That league plays eight games in two sessions, from July 12-15 at the Westchester County Center in White Plains, N.Y., and from July 17-20 in the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y.
The New York Knicks, the New Jersey Nets, the Orlando Magic, the Toronto Raptors, and the Boston Celtics also will field teams in the league.
PARADE FOR IVERSON. Hampton, Va., the hometown of Allen Iverson, will sponsor a parade in his honor Saturday. Iverson, 21, was selected first overall by the Sixers in last month's NBA draft.
``The city has decided that this young man's efforts deserve recognition,'' said Joyce Hobson, a local high school teacher. Mayor James L. Eason will issue a proclamation declaring Saturday ``Allen Iverson Day.''