Whether you’re a fan of legendary coach John Wooden or not, this book will catch your attention. This retrospective, the official UCLA release on Wooden’s career, was originally intended to be the college’s 100th birthday present to Wooden. Instead, with his death in June last year at age 99, it becomes a lasting testament for basketball fans everywhere.
The thing about this book that immediately draws the reader in are the hundreds of photographs — black & white and colour, on the court and behind the scenes. However, for the true purists of the sport, a hidden treat are the additional exclusives including freehand diagrams of original plays, a handwritten list titled the “Most Memorable College Games of John Wooden’s College Teams,” and typewritten handouts covering his rules for practice and keys to success.
Richard Hoffer, of Sports Illustrated penned the book, but as you can imagine, there were numerous greats of the sport that wanted to weigh in on the great coach’s career. The words of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Walton, Gail Goodrich, Marques Johnson, Walt Hazzard, Sidney Wicks, Jamaal Wilkes are just some of the first-hand “Reflections” in the book.
And did I mention the photos? It’s a 212-page hardcover book full of great images (and stories) that would sit well on any basketball fan’s coffee table.