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: Sports and Freedom of Speech  9 Feb 15

by Tony Medley

The First Amendment to the Constitution provides, “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech...” That’s all well and good but it doesn’t prohibit private corporations from making rules that abridge the freedom of speech of their employees.

Incident #1: In a recent Clippers-Cavaliers game, Chris Paul was called for a technical foul. After the game he described what happened:

Someone was ridiculous. The technical I got was ridiculous. I don’t care what nobody says; I don’t care what she says; that’s terrible. We try to get the ball out fast every time and when we did she said, “Uh, uh.”  I said, “Why ‘Uh, uh?’” And she gave me a technical! That’s ridiculous. If that’s the case then this might not be for her.

But there was more to it than that. Suddenly because the referee who called the foul is female, Paul was castigated by knee-jerk feminists as being sexist. Explained female reporter Ramona Shelburne, ESPN Senior Writer:

As soon as I saw those quotes come across the screen and saw them on Twitter it didn’t look good. I started making some calls. What in the heck was the meaning there…Now when you say, “this might not be for ‘her,’ that sounds dismissive and the use of the pronoun ‘her’ is what got everybody’s attention. Especially when you see the quote and you read them and hear them.

To accuse someone as being sexist who uses the pronoun “her” to describe a woman is the ultimate in political correct nonsense. Paul was hit with a $25,000 fine.  How much of the fine was for criticizing the referee and how much for using the pronoun “her” to describe her is unknown. But if anyone thought that the NBA would have a wiser head on this issue, read on.

Incident #2: Donald Sterling, longtime owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, had a private conversation recorded without his permission (in violation of California law) in which he made a racially offensive comment. The woman to whom he made the comment then made the recording public. New NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, jumped on the controversy. He banned Sterling for life from the NBA and ordered him to dispose of the franchise. He did all this without a hearing, without even a scintilla of fair play and the appearance of justice for Sterling. Because what he did was popular, he basked in the glow of unremitting praise. Civil libertarians, however, should have been astonished. The First Amendment has nothing to do with this because the NBA is a private organization. But even private organizations should be bound by rules of fair play and the appearance of justice. Regardless of how heinous an act is committed, the accused should be entitled to his “day in court.” He should be entitled to a hearing, to be presented with the evidence against him, given the right to contest it, and to give a defense. But not with Silver, an attorney from bigtime Wall Street firm, Cravath, Swain & Moore, with a law degree from the University of Chicago that apparently does not have a course in ethics. If it did, and if Silver had taken it, the thought probably would have wafted through his head, “Maybe I ought to hear Mr. Sterling’s side of the story in person before I render a decision.” But the plaudits from the media were so deafening that Silver’s better judgment, if he has one, was overwhelmed. Because race was involved, and because Sterling is unpopular, until today I have yet to see anybody with the temerity to criticize Silver’s unilateral actions.