Monday, April 23, 2018

Forgotten Teams

I have never been much of a sports fan. I never played sports in school, and didn't really catch the fever later.

However, when I had the opportunity to review Coach Wooden's Forgotten Teams by Pat Williams I was intrigued. I vaguely remembered the great Coach John Wooden, and his UCLA basketball teams. Teams that brought players like Bill Walton, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and others to the forefront. This book however was about Coach Woodens summer basketball camps. Camps that exposed hundreds of kids instead of just 12 players to Coaches teaching. And teaching is what John Wooden did.

The campers who passed through the John Wooden Basketball Fundamentals camp all knew they were in the presence of greatness. Greatness as measured by John Wooden's depth of character and breadth of love. Not only did the campers learn character and life skills, the assistant coaches and counselors did as well.  One thing that stood out to me was a comment made by one of the assistants.

"Coach told us that to be competitive you don't have to do extraordinary things. You simply have to do ordinary things extraordinarily well. Every detail is important when it comes to being the best you can be."

Coach Wooden was a simple and humble man. A man of faith and integrity. His emphasis at camp was not about winning, but about each camper (and coaches) to make the effort to do the best of which they are capable. And then be at peace with themselves. He cared about each camper and wanted his coaches to help every camper reach his full potential. He didn't cater to the most skilled players. And he insisted his coaches not cater to them either. Just give each camper the best experience they could have.

He was a coach for all times, a coach for all seasons.

 I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are my honest opinion.

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