A full life

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It’s always a sad day when a legend passes and there is plenty of sadness around the sports world now that John Wooden is gone. He was a treasure as a coach and, more importantly, as a person.

But today should be a day when we think about how full his life was.

The man lived 99 years. He coached 10 national champions. He coached some of the greatest players to ever play the game. In my opinion, he had the greatest dynasty ever in sports. He was adored and revered in his senior years.

Not a bad life.

As a young man, I lived through the UCLA dominance of the sport. Two of my favorite memories involved the Bruins.

Losing.

When Houston and Elvin Hayes beat them. When N.C. State and David Thompson beat them. Because they so rarely lost.

I recommend checking out Wooden’s website for words of wisdom that you can take with you for the rest of your life. He was a great man. He lived the best of lives.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Matt, I think for you to imply that Coach Wooden was a cheater is about as low as a man could go. I trust that none of my 6 kids will ever stoop that low in an effort to besmirch the good name of a college legend. I was hacked off everytime UCLA won another national championship but I don’t think Coach Wooden cheated. He was a phenomenal coach and human being.

  2. I wouldn’t say Wooden himself cheated, but I remember all of the fuss about UCLA buying cars and providing cash and other “incentives” to play there. I was shattered as a teen to hear my hero Bill Walton was tainted. Wooden had great players, but that doesn’t take anything away from his accomplishments. Many coaches have talent but cannot get players to buy into a system. Wooden had a way with young men. He got them to put egos aside and be a team. He counseled and mentored them, on and off the floor. (Well, my Bill had a little political issue, but …) Naw, I can’t say anything but good about the guy. He was first class.