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.
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 ESPN’s
Wimbledon Coverage 5 Jul 16
by Tony Medley
Bring Back the USA
Back in the day (and it hasn’t been that long ago; USA gave it up after
the 2008 tournament), the USA Network provided the best coverage of
tennis with the U.S. Open, and it’s sorely missed. Comparing what we get
from ESPN and what USA provided, it’s like comparing a horse and buggy
to a Mercedes.
It’s obvious that
none of the suits that run ESPN watch its tennis coverage. If they did
they would realize that their sound engineers are incompetent. As I have
said in the past (I apparently have to comment in this every year), the
sounds of the crowd and the umpire drown out their announcers. Most of
the time, I don’t care because their commentators are bland and trite,
but I do want to hear what John McEnroe has to say but his comments are
almost completely drowned out by the crowd noise. Worse, after
Saturday’s Novak Djokovic-Sam Querrey match, ESPN went to a split screen
to show Djokovic being interviewed post-match while showing the Andy
Murray-John Millman match on the other screen. But to ensure that nobody
could hear anything Djokovic said, ESPN kept the crown noise from the
Murray match on high so that many of Djokovic’s answers were
near-inaudible, totally drowned out by the crowd noise at the Murray
But that’s not all of
ESPN’s tennis incompetence. On virtually every pitch on every MLB
telecast, there is a graphic showing the speed of the pitch. ESPN should
have a similar graphic showing the speed of the serve. It’s shown on the
scoreboard at the match; why can’t ESPN show it as a graphic on its
There’s more. ESPN’s
directors constantly miss points while they are showing replays. In the
Djokovic-Querrey match, they even missed another point just to show a
reaction shot of Djokovic’s coach, Boris Becker.
Finally, ESPN refuses
to use the low camera that puts the viewer in the match for play by
play. They might use it on a few replays, but this shot, which is as
good as the centerfield camera used on every pitch in baseball, is
totally ignored by ESPN and all the other telecasters of tennis, and
it’s a shame because it puts the viewer in every point.
Turn off the sound:
TV commentators making no sense isn’t limited to baseball, football, and
basketball. In answer to Golf’s U.S. Open Championship lead broadcaster
Joe Buck’s question on Fox Sports, “Whoever wins this U.S. Open
Championship today does what?”
Paul Azinger responded in stream of consciousness of which James Joyce
would be proud: “Golfers choke for two things; cash and prestige. Here
at the U.S. Open they’re going to be choking for prestige and prestige
only…you gotta control your heart rate; your heart can beat so hard you
can feel your pulse in your fingertips…you gotta be conscious of your
walking pace today… but all in all you have to hit the fairway and as we
all know, it comes down to the putter.”
Later, in commenting
on the possibility of a penalty against eventual winner, Dustin Johnson,
Azinger said, “Let’s be clear about one thing: it’s never easy.” That
was the straw that broke the camel’s back; click.
Is this really that tough a job?
Chris Woodward is the Dodgers new third base coach. This is not a taxing
position. Responsibilities include flashing signs to batters and
runners, and deciding whether a runner should try to get to home. With
the Dodgers leading Colorado Sunday 2-0, they had runners on second and
third with two outs. Justin Turner hit a short, Texas League, single to
left field. One run scored easily. Woodward inexplicably sent the runner
on second, Yasmani Grandal, a lead-footed catcher, to the plate. It was
but a short throw from shallow left field and Grandal was out by 20
feet. Question: what kind of reasoning is involved in deciding to send
in a slow runner from second with two out when your cleanup hitter,
Adrian Gonzalez is up next? As might have been anticipated, Gonzales led
off the next inning with a single that would have scored Grandal had
Woodward held him up at third.