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 their stories in their own words. This is the book that UCLA Athletic Director J.D. Morgan tried to ban.

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

Pitch Perfect (1/10)

by Tony Medley

Runtime 1:53

Not for children.

This is a musical that is more annoying than entertaining. Starring Anna Kendrick and Brittany Snow, it's the story of a bunch of Freshman in college, misfits who attend college but devote every waking moment to an a cappella singing contest.

Like Glee, the film encourages sexual promiscuity by making light of it. Since the film is obviously aimed at teenaged girls (it's unlikely anybody older than 15 could be entertained by this), it is irresponsible to show young people having sex willy-nilly without consequences. The way Glee  and movies like this wink their collective eyes at teenaged sexual promiscuity is deplorable.

The setup scenes are ludicrous, featuring a campus where the various singing teams hang around the campus as groups, breaking out into song with the least possible provocation. Some of the characters are equally ludicrous. One, in particular, is an Asian girl who speaks with such a low voice that basically all she does is move her lips. I guess this is intended to be funny when it is only irritating. There are a couple of vomiting scenes that are more disgusting than funny.

The movie is supposed to be about singing and music but there are only a couple of production numbers that are worth watching. In fact, the most entertaining song was a short rendition of the Miley Cyrus 2009 hit, "Party in the USA" (written by Jessie J, Dr. Luke, and Claude Kelley). Alas, it was not only far too short, the way it was presented, the girls singing it on a bus on the way to a performance competition, made no sense.

Brittany Snow's character as the group leader was so over-the-top, it led the list of annoyances, although Kendrick's character and performance weren't far behind. Those deficiencies should properly be laid at the feet of director Jason Moore, though, than blaming the two actresses. It's hard to believe, at least it is for me, but this is based on a book by Mickey Rapkin. A whole book on this? There isn't enough story here to make a half hour sitcom. How could somebody write a whole book on this? Can you spell "flimsy premise?"

September 12, 2012