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A Team for America: When West Point Football Rallied a Nation at War

3.73  ·  Rating Details  ·  44 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews

There never has been a sports event, perhaps never an event of any kind, that received the attention of so many Americans in so many places around the world.” So wrote a reporter on December 2, 1944, about the greatest Army- Navy football game in the long history of that storied rivalry. World War II raged in Europe, Africa, and the Pacific; President Roosevelt was seriou

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Hardcover, 288 pages
Published October 16th 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (first published November 29th 2011)
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(showing 1-30 of 71)
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Dachokie
Sep 03, 2013 Dachokie rated it really liked it
Shelves: world-war-ii
A Fine Tribute to a Bygone Era of Football ...

This book was reviewed as part of Amazon's Vine program which included a free advance copy of the book.

To be honest, the storied Army-Navy rivalry has never really manifested much excitement in me, mainly because the teams haven't been major players in college football for almost half a century. To most post-baby boomers it is hard to fathom these two military schools ever being equal to today's LSU or Alabama, but during World War II, they were grid
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Lance
Nov 01, 2015 Lance rated it liked it
This book was okay..and just okay. I was expecting more about the famous Army-Navy game in 1944 which was only the last chapter.

Review:
The years of World War II were certainly trying times for college athletics. Many of the potential athletes that would play sports in college were fighting in one of the military branches. The military academies were losing some of their players early as course work and military training was accelerated to get commissioned officers ready for combat duty quicker.
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Allen
Jan 13, 2016 Allen rated it really liked it
Interesting book that focuses on Army football leading up to the 1944 Army - Navy game. In telling his story, Randy Roberts describes not only Army football but the state of college football in the 1930's and through the war years. At times his description seemed more fiction than fact. For example in 1944 the Army - Navy game pits the No. 1 rated team versus the No. 2 ranked team; Army defeats Notre Dame 59 - 0 in 1944 (ND was ranked No. 2 at the time); in 1943 Alabama drops football (what???); ...more
J.S.
Aug 21, 2015 J.S. rated it it was ok
Shelves: wwii, vine
If the crisp chilly air on your cheeks, the sharp crunch of leaves underfoot, and the smell of a warm fire in the air sounds like football weather to you, you just might enjoy this one. Football is a game made for Fall as much as it is for rivalries, and the Army-Navy rivalry is an old one. But in the early 1940s Navy's dominance of Army was complete. In fact, with the war siphoning off talent everywhere, Army was losing more often than winning.

Brigadier General Robert Eichelberger worried that
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Jason
Dec 07, 2011 Jason rated it it was amazing
This retelling of the 1944 Army football team is a refreshing example of sports & cultural history. Essentially, this book tells the story of the rise of USMA football in the World War II era, after falling on hards times during the Depression era. The strength of this book is that the author brings a historian's perspective, and not that of only a sports writer.

So in many cases, the strongest writing of this book deals with cultural details that a historian of the ear would be keenly inter
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james
Mar 30, 2013 james rated it really liked it
This is a very informative book about college football during World War II. The center of the book is Earle Blaik the head football coach at Dartmouth, who is recruited to coach the team at the US Military Academy. The latter had fallen on hard times due in part to height & weight restrictions for cadets.

The story builds to a conclusion with the Army-Navy game of 1944. Army hadn't beaten Navy for several years. This game was broadcast to US soldiers practically world wide.

Interspersed with
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Phil C
Feb 21, 2012 Phil C rated it really liked it
Good quick read about an interesting sports era. Nicely explained the V-12 program. It did show how West Point came to dominate during this era, (lowering standards, other NCAA teams reduced to freshmen/soph or no team at all, hand-picking the best of the best) and some-what diminishing (in my eyes) some of the on-the-field acclaim.
Liz
Aug 27, 2013 Liz rated it did not like it
I had to stop reading when the retelling of the 1941 Army-Navy game had Balik assigned to the role of coach for Army, Coach for Navy, and quarterback for Army all in the space of 3 pages. The gross typo made me wonder what else was false. Too bad, because the events and period portrayed were so exciting.
Nicole Warren
Oct 30, 2012 Nicole Warren rated it really liked it


Well written piece about the army-navy football game
Tim
Feb 25, 2012 Tim rated it liked it
Good book felt it could have been more.
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