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The Sweet Season: A Sportswriter Rediscovers Football, Family, and a Bit of Faith at Minnesota's St. John's University
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The Sweet Season: A Sportswriter Rediscovers Football, Family, and a Bit of Faith at Minnesota's St. John's University

4.01  ·  Rating Details ·  135 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
After fifteen years as a Sports Illustrated writer, pleading for interviews with large men in possession of larger egos, Austin Murphy decides to bail out. The time has come, he concludes, to fly beneath the radar of big-league sports, to while away a season with the Johnnies. So, he moves his family to the middle of Minnesota to chronicle a season at St. John's, a Divisio ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published August 20th 2002 by It Books (first published September 1st 2001)
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Dale Stonehouse
Jan 27, 2010 Dale Stonehouse rated it it was amazing
I had read this book about 9 years ago but I got started on it again after finding it at Goodwill. My world must have changed a great deal in the interim because it seems much richer and more vibrant than I remember. Perhaps that is a reflection of the richness of my life's journey during that time. It is still a great story about St. John's football and it helps that I actually know some of the people involved at the time. I took pictures at a few games that season because Brandon Novak, All-Am ...more
Mar 05, 2008 Robert rated it it was ok
Follows little Div. III college football power house St. Johns on their quest for a Stagg Bowl Championship. Murphy's moves his family from SF out to Minnesota for the season, and he attempts to juggle following the team along with becoming closer to his own family. His own kids are pretty hysterical, especially the son. Coach Gagliardi seems to be everything that is right with college athletics. Nice to see Rowan University get about two paragraphs in this book (sadly none of it was all too pos ...more
Jim Mullin
Jan 31, 2016 Jim Mullin rated it liked it
As a life long Football fan I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The author highlights the completely different approach to coaching, the main protagonist, John "Gags" Gagliardi uses to coach Minnesota St John's University to the all time winning Football team. As a side note our old HS coach, who was very successful as a HS coach and coached at University of Nebraska during the glory years, still living did not always agree with "Gags". Hence some interesting spirited discussions resulted.

I certainl
I read this while I worked as a bookseller at Borders. I found it while reshelving books, and since it is about my alma mater, I decided to read it. The prose is pretty straightforward, and the book is an easy read. The story is good, and any time I get the chance to read a good story about SJU, I will read it. I would like to see a story on SJU CC, though.
Jul 03, 2011 Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Austin Murphy is a witty writer and because I know SJU well, it was fun to hear his take on the school, monks, football. I liked how he interspersed his family and their history into the book. A great and quick read! This was also one of the books on the AHA summer reading list and thus far, might be one of my favorite books this summer.
Dec 22, 2007 Dave rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Sports fans, mostly, and sports media types.
It's a nice tale of dropping out from the rat race. Austin Murphy learned about more than just football by taking a fall to cover Division III St. John's. He seemed to have strengthened his family life as well by getting off the treadmill, which sometimes a sports writer needs to do. As a sports writer myself, I could relate to a lot of it.
Nov 26, 2008 Nicola rated it really liked it
I liked this book because the author took a sabbatical to St. John's University, where I spent a lot of time in college. I could imagine all the places that he was talking about. And it helped that my husband has been teaching me about football, so that I wasn't too lost. Thanks Jason!
Scott Allen
Oct 06, 2016 Scott Allen rated it it was amazing
I LOVE THIS BOOK! I read it every year at the beginning of football season. Murphy's story of spending a season with the St John's football team, reminds me of everything I hold dear in life. Faith, Family, and Football.
Mike Gregory
Oct 06, 2012 Mike Gregory rated it it was amazing
This book resonated with me as a passionate fan of Division III football. John Gagliardi is the NCAA record holder for wins in college football at all levels. But he also represents what is noble and honorable in athletic competition.
Anthony W
Jul 18, 2015 Anthony W rated it liked it
Started slowly. Author is often a doofus with his wife. However, the pace and flow picked up toward the end and it ended up being a really enjoyable read.
Apr 08, 2008 Scott rated it it was amazing
I laughed out loud more during this book than any I've ever read. Football, family and faith is a perfect summary of the themes. Murphy is a great story teller.
Neil Rempel
Mar 10, 2009 Neil Rempel rated it did not like it
Disappointed, was looking for an insight to St. John's coaching methods. Need to look else where.
Aug 18, 2009 Kelli rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-books
Sports as a metaphor for life is always classic and wonderful.
Mark Kasten
Feb 11, 2015 Mark Kasten rated it it was amazing
The book's best delights come from being as continually surprised as the author as he (re)discovers both life's simple and not-so simple pleasures in his sojourn from prime time to small town.
Feb 28, 2007 jake rated it really liked it
football jerks will love this one.
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