Basketball superstar Shaquille O'Neal rose to fame in the NBA but became, quite literally, one of the biggest personalities in pop culture. Born in Newark, New Jersey, he moved frequently as a child after his mother married his stepfather, Army sergeant Phil Harrison. As a youngster, O'Neal grew so big that he was frequently mistaken for an out of uniform enlisted man on Army bases. During a two-year high school career in San Antonio, Texas, his teams lost only one game. He was recruited by Louisiana State University to play college basketball and spent three seasons at Baton Rouge where he earned All-American honors twice and was named the national College Player of the Year by the Associated Press in 1991. He was drafted first overall in the 1992 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic. HIs success as a professional was immediate as he averaged more than 23 points-per-game his first season and was named Rookie of the Year. In his third season, he teamed with guard Penny Hardaway to lead Orlando to the NBA Finals, where they lost to Hakeem Olajuwon and the Houston Rockets. After winning a gold medal as part of the U.S. National Basketball team at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, he joined the Los Angeles Lakers as a free agent. O'Neal would find the greatest success of his career playing in L.A. alongside Kobe Bryant and under the direction of legendary coach Phil Jackson. The Lakers won three consecutive NBA titles and played for another during his tenure. During the early parts of his career, he had acted in the basketball themed movie "Blue Chips" with Nick Nolte. His proximity to Hollywood as a Laker allowed O'Neal to expand his acting career, starring as a genie in "Kazaam" (1996) and as a superhero in "Steel" (1997). His outgoing personality also made him a media darling and in-demand guest actor. His TV appearances, usually playing himself, included a memorable guest appearance on Larry David's "Curb Your Enthusiasm" (HBO, 2000- ) in a storyline involving the basketball star being accidentally injured by the comedian. O'Neal's contentious relationship with Bryant eventually led to him being traded to the Miami Heat in 2004. He partnered again with an All-Star guard, this time Dwyane Wade, and the team won an NBA title in 2006. The championship would by the last for the center. Injuries began to add up for O'Neal and he spent his final seasons playing diminished roles for the Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Boston Celtics. Off the court, he hosted the reality competition "Shaq Vs." (ABC, 2009-10). He retired from the NBA in 2011 having scored more than 28,000 points and being named an All-Star fifteen times. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016. Leaving basketball didn't diminish his public presence. After his playing career, he continued acting on occasion, especially in Adam Sandler vehicles. O'Neal appeared with the comedian in "Jack and Jill" (2011), "Grown Ups 2" (2013), and "Blended" (2014). He also joined fellow basketball stars Kyrie Irving, Reggie Miller, and Chris Webber for the comedy "Uncle Drew" (2018). He enjoyed a successful sports broadcasting career working with basketball. He famously teamed with Ernie Johnson Jr., Kenny Smith, and Charles Barkley for the popular studio show "Inside the NBA" (TNT, 1989- ). A successful businessman outside of sports, O'Neal served on the board of directors of pizza company Papa John's.