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They Call Me Coach Paperback – October 8, 2003
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From the Back Cover
The classic autobiography of UCLA basketball's legendary coach
"They Call Me Coach is grass-roots Americana, a story bigger than basketball. One of those rare sports books that is must reading for everyone."
For 27 years, John Wooden led the UCLA basketball team to unsurpassed victories and records. His dedication and inspiration made him America's "winningest" coach. In this classic bestselling autobiography--updated with a new foreword by Hall-of-Famer Bill Walton--the college basketball legend reflects on his record-breaking career, his life behind the scenes, and how his top players went on to shape and change the NBA. From the everyday basics to important life lessons ("It's not how tall you are, but how tall you play"), Wooden shares his worldly wisdom on and off the court to offer a personal history of an unforgettable time in college basketball, answering the most-asked questions about his life, his career, and the players who made his teams unbeatable.
"What Knute Rockne was to football, Connie Mack to baseball, and Wilbur and Orville Wright to flying, John Wooden is to basketball. This book captures the full flavor of the man, the philosophies that work in life, and the philosophies that work on the court. I commend it to people who want to succeed at either--or both."
--Los Angeles Times
About the Author
John Wooden (1910-2010), guided the UCLA Bruins to ten NCAA basketball championships over a 12-year period, including four perfect seasons and an 88-game winning streak. He was named ESPN’s “Greatest Coach of the 20th Century” and voted “#1 Coach of All Time” by The Sporting News. Sports Illustrated said it best when they said: “There’s never been a finer man in American sports than John Wooden, or a finer coach.” In 2003 John Wooden was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
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The book is a little lighter than I was hoping on discussing his philosophies and approaches and longer on showing them through the example of his life. The book takes the reader from his youth in Indiana through the late 1980's, and covers the great UCLA teams in some detail.
Anyone interested in the life of a great leader and teacher should read the book - if only for background and understanding how he lived his life. A good read.
One can surmise that much of what carried him to fame at UCLA was already picked up in his early days in life, as student, son, player and then coach in high school.
His faith in the Lord and reading Bible daily was inspirational as well.
Lessons taught by him to his players were not just about b-ball, but about life. The foreward by Bill Walton exudes this, and one can see how easy it was for his players to play for him.
Great read to be re-read. Youngsters should read this.