The Harlem Globetrotters, one of the most popular basketball acts in the world, will be making their way to the Johnson Coliseum for a special one-night performance Feb. 4 at 7 p.m. when they put their winning streak of 550 games on the line against their old rival, the Washington Generals. The theme of the Globetrotters’ 2008 tour is “Magic as Ever”, which is fully exemplified by their chaotic travel schedule. In the United States alone, the Globetrotters perform over 240 times for the North American portion of the world tour. Combine that total with the international games, and the Globetrotters perform well beyond 300 shows a year. Ed Chatal, SHSU Rec Sports Associate Director of Facilities, said the Globetrotters come to Sam Houston every three to four years. Before coming to Huntsville, the Globetrotters’ Texas 12-day tour includes stops in Midland, Abilene, Dallas, and Longview. After leaving Huntsville, the Globetrotters will make stops at Nacogdoches, College Station, Austin, Houston and Beaumont. The Globetrotters is an exhibition basketball team that is renowned for its combination of athleticism and comedy. The team was founded back in 1926 in Chicago, Illinois by Abe Saperstein. Despite their being from the Windy City, Saperstein adopted Harlem as their home city, as it was a center of African-American culture at the time. The Globetrotters finally played their first “home” game in Harlem in 1968, after four decades of existence. Originally, the Globetrotters were a very competitive team. Despite the flair that they had for entertaining the crowd, the team would only show off for the audience in garbage time after they had secured their lead. The Globetrotters even faced off against one of the best NBA teams at the time, the Minneapolis Lakers (later Los Angeles). In two consecutive years, they even beat the Lakers. These games against the Lakers transcended sports as it proved that the all-black Globetrotters were just as good as the all-white Lakers. Eventually, the team became known more for its comic routines and entertainment value. Now the games are all framed and involve them playing some opposing team whose players stand flat-footed and watch as the Globetrotters put on an impressive showing. The act often includes handling of one or more basketballs, including passing and juggling amongst players, spinning and balancing the balls on their fingertips, unusual, difficult shots, and highlight reel dunks. The team has become known as much for its rare losses as its long winning streaks. The Globetrotters claim to have gone on a few winning streaks that are ridiculously long, such as a string of 8,829 games spanning from 1971 to 1995 and another winning streak of 1,270 games, which ended back in 2000. As of February 2006, the team claims to have in excess of 22,000 wins.In the team’s 82-year history, they have performed in front of everyone from former presidents to popes. The team has made honorary Globetrotters of such well-know personalities as Bob Hope, Kareem Abdul- Jabbar, Whoopi Goldberg, Nelson Mandela, Pope John Paul II, and Jesse Jackson.The performance will be the Globetrotters first in Huntsville since February of 2005. Tickets can be purchased through the Recreational Sports Department, in Health and Kinesiology Center Suite 162 or by logging on to http://www.ticketweb.com. Ticket prices vary from $16 for general admission to $51 for “Magic Circle” seats. Students, faculty, and staff will receive a $3 discount when they show their BearkatOne cards.