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Got to Give the People What They Want: True Stories and Flagrant Opinions from Center Court Hardcover – October 6, 2015

4.6 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

JALEN ROSE is an ABC/ESPN analyst, executive producer of The Fab Five—the highest-rated documentary in ESPN history—and host of the Jalen Rose Report on Grantland and the Jacoby Podcast. Rose began his sports career at the University of Michigan where he reached two NCAA title games, and then went on to play for six teams in the NBA, most notably the Indiana Pacers when they made three consecutive Eastern Conference finals, including the 2000 NBA Finals. Rose established the Jalen Rose Foundation/Charitable Fund in 2000, personally donating close to $1.5 million to support the development and education of inner-city youths.  His most substantial outreach initiative to date is the establishment of the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy (JRLA) in his hometown of Detroit.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Archetype (October 6, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0804138907
  • ISBN-13: 978-0804138901
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,538 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was really looking forward to this book and the content was overwhelming. Like most memoirs, the author wrote about his life and how he got to where he is now. There are a few opinions interjected into parts of the book, but nothing I would consider flagrant. Jalen uses this book to set the record straight on a few of the controversial events that he has been involved in.
For someone who has so many issues with the NCAA (most involving money) he has few too few suggestions to fix it. I believe he gives two potential fixes as examples.
Jalen had lived an interesting life, but there's not a lot here that is new, especially those who listen to his podcast. There's barely enough here for a book, but at least Jalen can say he is an author now.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Love Jalen Rose, his podcasts, on-air stuff, etc. This book was all stories that we've heard on the podcast, and very rarely did the stories go deeper than what was already public knowledge. When we got to the Knicks chapter I was almost salivating at the stories that were to come, and then there was nothing. A quick read, but be prepared to not get much more insight than you already have if you're a fan of Jalen.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
For such an interesting personality, the book felt pretty bland. Loved the bits about family and how his background shaped him, but so much of the professional life was either rehashed it less interesting than when Jalen tells it on the podcast.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is pure candy for basketball nerds like me. I cannot recommend the audiobook version enough, which is narrated by Jalen himself, which gives it a similar edge than listening to the Jalen and Jacoby podcast. I don't want to make a bad pun here, but the book was everything I wanted it to be: a complete, exhaustive breakdown of what it is to be an NBA player, from birth to retirement. It's what Jalen provides and Good God, didn't he do it with absolute style or what?

There's an editorial aspect to this book I really liked also, which contains quips about the NCAA and infamous head coach Larry Brown among others, as well as segments on Jalen's relationship to his father Jimmy Walker and the freakin' SCHOOL he created, the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy. How is that for winning the game of life and changing the world? Guy FOUNDED A SCHOOL. IN DETROIT. Seriously, if you love basketball about 10% as much as I do, you'll love this book. It's about as fun and enlightening as celebrity memoirs can get.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Jalen Rose is a guy who's been on my radar since about the time he started doing work with Bill Simmons, and then seeing the Fab Five "30 for 30" put a story to a face and name that I knew vaguely from various ESPN platforms as a basketball analyst. Now, in his memoir, he tells some great stories and some harsh truths about his life both on and off the court.

"Got to Give the People What They Want" is Rose's story, from growing up in Detroit (and knowing his father was an NBA star player, though not present in his life) to going to college with Chris Webber and the other "Fab Five" members, to his NBA career and efforts to give back to the community that gave him life and the opportunity to do more than many of his peers. It's an honest, moving, funny, and insightful book, at times brutally honest and engaging to even the least-informed basketball fan. Rose addresses the "controversy" that led to Michigan's self-sanctioning of the titles and records won over the Fab Five's tenure and makes a compelling argument that college athletes should not only be paid but allowed to "major in athletics," because that's the real reason they're there. He writes honestly about his NBA career, which was long in years but short of championships; he credits Larry Bird with helping him learn the skills he'd need to prolong his career past the brief, fiery start a "Fab Five" member might otherwise have had. There are times when I disagree with Rose's assessments, such as his stand by former "Bad Boy" and fellow Detroit legend Isiah Thomas (who was the focus of a sexual harassment suit a few years back). But it's okay to disagree with him, and I still find the book a compelling, enlightening read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a huge fan of Jalen Rose even after his days at Michigan. I do know a lot of his stories from other sources and from the "Fab Five" documentary. This book didn't give me a ton of new info that I was hoping for. Maybe bits and pieces from his playing days and his current job at ESPN as an analyst and commentary. Being a fan of his I enjoyed the book and glad I read it. If you're not a huge fan you may be a bit disappointed. I think it's a worthwhile read for fans of his or the Fab Five. Go Blue!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Jalen makes you feel like you are having a conversation directly with him when you read this book. It was great to learn more about his life. I grew up at the same time and though I had a much different path, I loved basketball. If you want to know more about college basketball during that era. You need to read this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Absolutely a great read for any sports fan. It seems like he's having a conversation with you rather than reading a book. Also, I would recommend listening to his podcast as it provides some background on some stories. It's fun to read his words in his voice too. Overall, one of the better books I've ever read!
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