Arthur Leon Beatty, Jr. grew up in Washington, D.C., playing basketball. By age 13, Arthur reached over six feet tall and went on to play varsity basketball at McKinley Technical Senior High School. Upon graduation he reached 7’1’’ and accepted a scholarship to American University to play basketball.
Among his accomplishments, he was recognized as the Most Outstanding Senior Athlete and named to the All Metro Basketball Team in 1968. Beatty finished second in the NCAA in rebounding as a junior and was AU’s leading scorer in 1968. He was also included in the 1968-69 Edition of “Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges.” Beatty finished his career with 1,126 rebounds, which is third all-time at American. He also holds the third (458 rebounds) and ninth best (390) single-season rebounding years in AU history.
Arthur graduated from American with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Interior Design. Drafted in the third round by two U.S. professional teams - the ABA’s New York Nets and the NBA’s Phoenix Suns - in 1968, Arthur accepted an offer from the Belgium pro club, Racing Mechelen, which included free tuition at Antwerp Academy of Fine Arts. While playing three games a week in Belgium, he also studied his passion for the arts. Arthur said, “I made my choice to become an artist instead of a ballplayer, and I’ve never regretted it.”