"Jackrabbit : The Story of Clint Castleberry and the Improbable 1942 Georgia Tech Football Season", dusts off the archives of World War II-era college football and takes a fresh look at a tragic star. Even if you haven't heard of Clint Castleberry, you will be impressed after reading Chastain 's narrative. His story is told with expertise and detail by Tech grad Bill Chastain in "Jackrabbit," available here. It has been a great history lesson not just about Castleberry but also about Alexander, Bobby Dodd and the city of Atlanta in that era.--The Tampa Tribune
Castleberry went off to fight in World War II, never to return. His No. 19 is the only football jersey that Tech has retired. His story is told with expertise and detail by Tech grad Bill Chastain in "Jackrabbit," available here. It has been a great history lesson not just about Castleberry but also about Alexander, Bobby Dodd and the city of Atlanta in that era.--Atlanta Journal-Constitution
From the Author
Growing up in a Georgia Tech household, I had always heard about Clint Castleberry from my father. Once I became a sportswriter I wanted to know more about the only player in Tech history to have his number retired. Unfortunately, save for a handful of articles that had been written over the years, I couldn't find out much about him. So I decided to write the book and find out as much as I could on my own about Castleberry. The book actually had been scheduled to come out four years ago, but the first publisher ended up having financial problems and there were some problems with contract the second publisher offered me. Fortunately, in 2011 I found a home for the book.
Among the challenges of writing this book was the fact that many of those who played with Castleberry had died. Fortunately, I was able to locate some who knew him in high school and in college. Their interviews were invaluable, as was the interview with Charley Trippi and many interviews with Catleberry's widow. The Georgia Tech Department of Living History was unbelievable, especially its director, Marilyn Somers. And, obviously, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution was invaluable. I enjoyed the research process, particularly the days when I uncovered a jewel or two that enhanced the story. Those were the good days.
I wasn't exactly surprised to find out he was a gym rat. This guy loved sports and was a talented athlete in football, basketball, and baseball. He loved to compete and he was a winner. Learning about his days at Boys High was not only fascinating, but it was also something I did not expect. I had no idea that the Atlanta-based high school was a national powerhouse that traveled all over the country to play games. And Castleberry dominated in those games.
This book was a labor of love. I really enjoyed traveling back to the early 1940s in Atlanta.