Out of print for more than 30 years, now available for the first time as an eBook, this is the controversial story of John Wooden's first 25 years and first 8 NCAA Championships as UCLA Head Basketball Coach. This is the only book that gives a true picture of the character of John Wooden and the influence of his assistant, Jerry Norman, whose contributions Wooden  ignored and tried to bury.

Compiled with more than 40 hours of interviews with Coach Wooden, learn about the man behind the coach. The players tell their stories in their own words.

Click the book to read the first chapter and for ordering information. Also available on Kindle.

Sports Medley: MVP Cam Newton refuses to dive for a loose ball and loses the Super Bowl 8 Feb 16

by Tony Medley

Two things stand out from this inept Super Bowl:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

  1. NFL officials are atrocious and, true to what they did all season, they turned the game around with seven minutes remaining in the first quarter. Carolina, trailing 3-0, on first down at their 15, completed a 25 yard pass for a first down at their 40. But the officials ruled it incomplete. Replays showed clearly that the ball never hit the ground and that it was a completed pass, but they inexplicably (literally; there was no explanation) upheld the ruling on the field and returned the ball to the 15. Two plays later lethargic Carolina quarterback Cam Newton fumbled and Denver recovered in the end zone resulting in Denver’s only touchdown until a gift at the end of the game, and robbing Carolina of a challenge. This erroneous call completely changed the game. If these incompetent officials can’t get it right in the biggest game of the year when they can replay it in slow motion, how do they keep their jobs? Don’t expect any consequences from their NFL commissars.
  2. In the fourth quarter on 3rd and 9 on their own 24, trailing by 6, 16-10, with a little over 4 minutes left on the clock, Newton had the ball knocked out of his hand. He was closer than one foot to the loose ball, and as a Denver player had his arm out reaching for it, all Newton had to do was fall on it on the 18 yard line, but he declined to fall on it. Instead he backed away, allowing Denver to eventually recover inside the five yard line, which ended all reasonable hope for Carolina. With the Super Bowl on the line, Newton just let Denver recover and the game was basically over. The question is, why was 245 lb. Cam Newton, who has been increasingly verbose and egotistical while his publicity got him awarded the MVP, too chicken to dive for a ball, possession of which held his team’s only chance. This is an MVP? Even when she was seven years old, Shirley Temple would have shown more gumption.

They should be NFL Referees: I don’t know who the CBS audio engineers were for the halftime show, but they were as inept as the game officials. It was impossible to hear the lyrics or melodies of the songs played at halftime. All it was was crowd and rhythm noise that drowned out the singers, and a bunch of people trying to dance (not very successfully from my point of view). Surely in this day and age there’s someone in television who can figure out how to pick up the audio of the singers.

Oh, those highly educated sports broadcasters: “Have you seen enough of Matt Cassel so that he wouldn’t have to play no football?” Cris Carter, the moral judgment-challenged ESPN football analyst, a graduate of The Ohio State University, who is frequently mentioned in this segment.

“You’re going to hear Trey and I,” Mike Golic, ESPN Radio, graduate of Notre Dame, another regular contributor to this segment.

“When me and my husband first got together…,” Lafern Cusack, educational level, if any, unknown, hostess of “The Experience,” an ESPN Radio interview show.

How little they know: Josh Weinstock of moviepilot.com, giving a review of the upcoming movie, Race, on the aforementioned Lafern’s show, “It’s about the 1936 Berlin Olympics shortly after the end of The Great Depression.” Sorry, Josh, but in 1939, almost ten years after it began with the Crash in 1929 and three years after the Berlin Olympics to which you refer, more than one in five Americans still could not find work. In 1936, we had barely reached the halfway point and were still in the depths of the Depression. You could look it up.

Another change-the-channel commercial: The annoying commercial with the guy on the rooftop fighting off bad guys when his clueless mother calls him on his cell phone and jabbers about her cats or whatever. What’s Warren Buffet’s Geico thinking? That they want to put down, insult, and be condescending of elderly white mothers who love their sons? Yeah, that’s a good way to sell insurance, or anything. ‘Tain’t funny (or even clever), McGee.

Junk Television: Was there anything on the tube more unwatchable than CBS’s 7 ˝ hour lead in to The Super Bowl?

Three possibilities:

  1. The halftime show;
  2. The uninspired commercials;
  3. The game (maybe they should rename it The Stupor Bowl).