Book Review: Coach Wooden’s Forgotten Teams: Stories and Lessons from John Wooden’s Summer Basketball Camps, by Pat Williams with Jim Denney
Having grown up in Southern California during the heyday of UCLA basketball, I was a fan and follower of Coach John Wooden. I remember reading his biography, They Call Me Coach, when it came out in the late 1980’s. Needless to say, I looked forward to reading the latest book by Pat Williams and Jim Denney, Coach Wooden’s Forgotten Teams: Stories and Lessons from John Wooden’s Summer Basketball Camps. I had heard about the camps from Prof. Howard Hendricks, who taught at Dallas Theological Seminary and was chaplain of the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL. The Cowboys held their training camp at California Lutheran College at the same time Coach Wooden held his summer basketball camps for children and teenagers.
Williams’ book highlights many of the lessons taught by Coach Wooden during these summer camps. Wooden was always coaching the kids and the counselors. Success is in the details. Be a leader who builds leaders. Teach wisdom, not winning. Empower your people. Strive for competitive greatness. At the heart of Coach Wooden’s approach was his “Pyramid of Success,” which highlighted and explained the key elements of his life and coaching philosophy.
William’s book is filled with stories and interviews from former UCLA players and coaches, as well as a number of people who attended Wooden’s camps as campers and counselors. It is a quick and interesting read. Anyone who follows college basketball or simply wants to be a better teacher or leader will find it profitable and encouraging.
Disclosure: I received this book free from Baker Books through the Baker Books Bloggers www.bakerbooks.com/bakerbooksbloggers program. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review.