(Oregon Public Broadcasting) — A Portland Community College physics instructor who helped develop the breakaway rim was honored Tuesday at the National Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. A prototype of the breakaway rim will have a spot in the Hall.

Toby Dittrich and five others invented the spring-loaded rim that enables players to slam the ball through the hoop, and even hang on it, while rarely shattering the backboard.

He was one of two inventors who received financial benefits for the rim because of their patents.

Dittrich has been a physics instructor for 27 years. He says his love of basketball and knowledge of physics helped him contribute to a device that made the dunk safer for players.

A prototype will be located in the basketball Hall of Fame.

"Well, it's quite an honor, and so we found a place where it'll be there for a long time and show the history of basketball."

Dittrich says his invention "changed the world" by helping make the dunk shot a standard part of basketball.
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