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Toughness: Developing True Strength On and Off the Court Paperback – March 4, 2014
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PRAISE FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER TOUGHNESS
“Honest and inspiring, Jay Bilas explores the many tenets of toughness and shares personal stories and interviews with some of the best athletes and coaches. Toughness is critical to gaining an edge in sports and life, and this book provides lessons to help you succeed from a well-respected expert.”—Jim Nantz
“If you want the true definition of toughness as it relates to sports and life, this is a must read. Jay Bilas has acquired a wealth of knowledge from his basketball career as a player, coach, and analyst. Jay’s descriptions and illustrations are ‘Awesome, Baby’ with a capital A!”—Dick Vitale, ESPN
“Jay Bilas gives meaning to one of the most overused words in sports. Bilas explains the complexity of acquiring and utilizing all aspects of toughness, be it mental or physical, both on and off the playing field. It is a great description of a concept and value we all need in our lives.”—Hall of Fame coach Jim Calhoun
“Tough it out. Be tough. Stay tough. How often do we hear that in sports and life? It’s the go-to answer for any problem. We all want toughness. Jay Bilas take this intangible concept and gives it concrete meaning. The inspiring and humbling stories of truly tough people are written artfully and show that being tough isn’t just a catchall cliché. It’s a transforming personal value. Jay does a brilliant job illustrating why toughness is a quality I want to cultivate in my life every day.”—Rece Davis, ESPN
“Make sure you are holding a yellow highlighter when you read this book. There is an incredible amount of wit and wisdom in these pages, thanks to the dedication, hard work, and—yes—toughness Jay Bilas demonstrated by talking to all of these people. Reading this book won’t make you tough, but it will teach you how to get there.”—Seth Davis, Sports Illustrated and CBS Sports
About the Author
Jay Bilas is one of the most widely recognized voices in sports. He is a regular analyst and color commentator on SportsCenter, ESPN game broadcasts, the wildly popular College GameDay, and coverage of the NCAA Final Four and NBA Draft. He was a four-year starter at Duke and helped lead the team to the Final Four. He played three seasons in Europe before signing on as assistant coach to Coach K from 1990-1992, during which time Duke won back-to-back national titles. He is currently a partner at the law firm Moore and Van Allen.
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Bilas makes the case for toughness using the topics of trust, preparation, courage, communications, self-evaluation, persistence, and resilience. And he uses coaches and athletes who are worthy role models for his subject, toughness: Bill Self, Tom Izzo, Mike Krzyzewski, Grant Hill, Steve Kerr, and Curtis Strange. Bilas uses himself throughout the book as a moving "toughness-target", freely admitting how he was not always tough enough and has kept growing in this regard.
The stories the author brings to print are not just instructive, many are emotionally memorable and inspiring. The tough aren't always the physically strongest, as noted by the young, tenacious brain-cancer-surviving, fourth grade teacher and her doctor who both live "hope" daily.
I am a Durham, NC native, an ACC basketball fan, Blue Devils fan, Jim Valvano fan, and Dean Smith fan! I remember the 80s teams of Bilas, Alarie, Henderson, Amaker, and Dawkins, but I never knew how driven and talented the individuals were. Personally, I thought is was cool that Mark Alarie only wanted to focus on the positive, that he did not want to be shown video of his screw-ups, which Coach K is famous for. Alarie was extremely tough on himself and had hugely high self- expectations.
I enjoyed Jay's conversational style, his sense of humor, and his modesty. Even when he cited his talents or accomplishments, he never exaggerated them. This book will contribute to many, many future successes that otherwise would never have happened, because individuals and/or teams would never developed the kinds of toughness that this book illustrates and inspires!!
It's a great read, good length, the only down side was it was so much basketball and I'm not the biggest basketball fan. I do, however have much more respect for some of those Duke p,ayers I used to dislike.