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They Call Me Coach

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  1,445 Ratings  ·  72 Reviews
The legendary coach talks about his life, his players, and his winning philosophies in this bestselling autobiography

John Wooden's dedication and inspiration made him America's "winningest" coach. His beliefs in hard work and preparedness brought the UCLA Bruins an unparalleled 10 NCAA basketball championships. Now in this bestselling autobiography--with a Foreword by Hall
Paperback, 272 pages
Published October 8th 2003 by McGraw-Hill Education (first published January 1st 1972)
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Otis Chandler
A truly inspirational book by a truly inspirational man. Coach Wooden coached 17 seasons at Indiana and UCLA before winning a championship - and then he won 10 out of the next 12! He is one of the greatest coaches ever, and Reading his book gives some great insights into his philosophy.

My only criticism of the book is that I think he spent too much time comparing his players, and answering questions like "who was your greatest player". I guess he got those questions a lot, but it didn't add muc
Jul 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
John Wooden is the winningest coach in NCAA history, and a legend in the world of basketball. I spotted his autobiography on a friend's bookshelf and asked to borrow it. She also insisted that I take The Zookeeper's Wife . Suffice it to say that I thought this book was the better of the two.

There were three big things that I was left with at the end of the book:

One of the things that really struck me about this book was the way in which he described his former players. He speaks of them with ge
Jack Wangsness
Jan 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"They Call Me Coach" by John Wooden is about a hall of fame coach and player that talks about his life and the teams he coached. In this book John explains why he wanted to create a special bond with his players and how he saw them as his sons. John also explains how he taught the game of basketball and how his ideas were the first of its kind. He takes you through some of his most important games and what he was thinking at that time.
I thought that this book was a great piece of writing that
Michael Scott
Jul 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
[I finished this book two days before [author:John Wooden] departed, and I just couldn't bring myself then to write this review until now, almost two months later.]

They Call Me Coach is a book about life and basketball, written by the Hall of Fame player and coach John Wooden. The book covers his playing years and (mostly) the coaching career, especially with the UCLA Bruins. The strict yet kind life philosophy of John Wooden is impressed in almost every line, and served him well in completing t
Brandi D'angelo
Nov 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Interestingly, this book was recommended via a parenting podcast. Not that it had a ton of parenting advice, but it's a very interesting book to read about basketball and how this talented and smart coach developed his boys into fine men and basketball players. He basically didn't tolerate any crap. We could use more like him nowadays!!
Mar 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
There is only one word to describe this book - inspirational. They Call Me Coach is the story of John Wooden, the best NCAA Basketball coach of all time, winning 10 national championship with UCLA, including 7 in a row. The book tells most of his life, from his first coaching job to his last national championship. It also emphasizes John Wooden's principles of hard work and practice over winning, and not only focusing on getting to the top but staying at the top. They Call Me Coach also shows a ...more
Jan 23, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sports
John Wooden is recognized as one of the greatest basketball coaches in the history of the game. He won an amazing 10 NCAA National Championships. A truly great leader.
Aug 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sports
Coach Wooden was kind of a stick in the mud, but he is maybe the most impartial sports-book participant/author I've ever read. His tone is clinical, not nostalgic or self-promotional, and that's a credit to his objectives - he's not trying to romanticise those great UCLA teams. He wants to explain how his coaching philosophies got him to where he finished. UCLA basketball is almost an afterthought.
May 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Book is a slow read, but interesting for basketball enthusiasts. A good leadership manual, if you want an explanation of John Wooden’s pyramid.
Mar 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Imagine playing sports in college. Your team is considered the best in the country. After 10 years, you have won 10 national championships. That would be considered one of the greatest accomplishments to you right? This is the exact thing that UCLA coach did coaching basketball. He is considered to be the greatest basketball coach that ever lived. He coached multiple high school teams as well and led them to multiple championships. He was so successful, yet his style was so simple.
Coach Wooden's
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John Robert Wooden is a retired American basketball coach. He is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame as both a player (class of 1961) and as a coach (class of 1973). He was the first person ever enshrined in both categories; only Lenny Wilkens and Bill Sharman have since been so honored. His 10 NCAA National Championships in a 12 year period while at UCLA are unmatched by any other college bas ...more
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“Many building custodians across the country would tell you that UCLA left the shower and dressing room the cleanest of any team. We picked up all the tape, never there soap on the shower floor for someone to slip on, made sure all the showers were turned off and all towels were accounted for. The towels were always deposited in a receptacle, if there was one, or stacked nearly near the door. It seems to me that this is everyone's responsibility-not just the mangers's. Furthermore, I believe it is a form of discipline that should be a way of life, not to please some building custodian, but as an expression of courtesy and politeness that each of us owes to his follow-man. These little things establish a spirit of togetherness and consideration that help unite the team into a solid unit.” 2 likes
“In game play it was always my philosophy that patience would win out. By that, I meant patience to follow our game plan. If we believed in it, we would wear the opposition down and would eventually get to them. If we broke away from our style, however, and played their style, we would be in trouble. And if we let our emotions, rather than our reason, command the game we would not function effectively.” 2 likes
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