Sports Journalism
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The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game
The Blind Side
Evolution of a Game
Hardcover      ISBN: 039306123x

What changes? He takes up football, and school, after a rich, Evangelical, Republican family plucks him from the mean streets. Their love is the first great force that alters the world's perception of the boy, whom they adopt. The second force is the evolution of professional football itself into a game where the quarterback must be protected at any cost. Our protagonist turns out to be the priceless combination of size, speed, and agility necessary to guard the quarterback's greatest vulnerability: his blind side.
Pistol: The Life of Pete Maravich
Pistol
The Life of Pete Maravich
Paperback      ISBN: 0743284984
Pistol is more than the biography of a ballplayer. It's the stuff of classic novels: the story of a boy transformed by his father's dream--and the cost of that dream. Even as Pete Maravich became Pistol Pete--a basketball icon for baby boomers--all the Maraviches paid a price. Now acclaimed author Mark Kriegel has brilliantly captured the saga of an American family: its rise, its apparent ruin, and, finally, its redemption.

Almost four decades have passed since Maravich entered the national consciousness as basketball's boy wizard. No one had ever played the game like the kid with the floppy socks and shaggy hair. And all these years later, no one else ever has. The idea of Pistol Pete continues to resonate with young people today just as powerfully as it did with their fathers.

In averaging 44.2 points a game at Louisiana State University, he established records that will never be broken. But even more enduring than the numbers was the sense of ecstasy and artistry with which he played. With the ball in his hands, Maravich had a singular power to inspire awe, inflict embarrassment, or even tell a joke.

But he wasn't merely a mesmerizing showman. He was basketball's answer to Elvis, a white Southerner who sold Middle America on a black man's game. Like Elvis, he paid a terrible price, becoming a prisoner of his own fame.

Set largely in the South, Kriegel's Pistol, a tale of obsession and basketball, fathers and sons, merges several archetypal characters. Maravich was a child prodigy, a prodigal son, his father's ransom in a Faustian bargain, and a Great White Hope. But he was also a creature of contradictions: always the outsider but a virtuoso in a team sport, an exuberant showman who wouldn't look you in the eye, a vegetarian boozer, an athlete who lived like a rock star, a suicidal genius saved by Jesus Christ.

A renowned biographer--People magazine called him "a master"--Kriegel renders his subject with a style that is, by turns, heartbreaking, lyrical, and electric.

The narrative begins in 1929, the year a missionary gave Pete's father a basketball. Press Maravich had been a neglected child trapped in a hellish industrial town, but the game enabled him to blossom. It also caused him to confuse basketball with salvation. The intensity of Press's obsession initiates a journey across three generations of Maraviches. Pistol Pete, a ballplayer unlike any other, was a product of his father's vanity and vision. But that dream continues to exact a price on Pete's own sons. Now in their twenties--and fatherless for most of their lives--they have waged their own struggles with the game and its ghosts.

Pistol is an unforgettable biography. By telling one family's history, Kriegel has traced the history of the game and a large slice of the American narrative.
I Never Had It Made: The Autobiography of Jackie Robinson
I Never Had It Made
The Autobiography of Jackie Robinson
Paperback      ISBN: 0060555971

The bestselling autobiography of American baseball and civil rights legend Jackie Robinson

Before Reggie Jackson, before Hank Aaron, baseball's stars had one undeniable trait in common: they were all white. In 1947, Jackie Robinson broke that barrier, striking a crucial blow for racial equality and changing the world of sports forever. I Never Had It Made is Robinson's own candid, hard-hitting account of what it took to become the first black man in history to play in the major leagues.

I Never Had It Made recalls Robinson's early years and influences: his time at UCLA, where he became the school's first four-letter athlete; his army stint during World War II, when he challenged Jim Crow laws and narrowly escaped court martial; his years of frustration, on and off the field, with the Negro Leagues; and finally that fateful day when Branch Rickey of the Brooklyn Dodgers proposed what became known as the "Noble Experiment"--Robinson would step up to bat to integrate and revolutionize baseball.

More than a baseball story, I Never Had It Made also reveals the highs and lows of Robinson's life after baseball. He recounts his political aspirations and civil rights activism; his friendships with Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, William Buckley, Jr., and Nelson Rockefeller; and his troubled relationship with his son, Jackie, Jr.

I Never Had It Made endures as an inspiring story of a man whose heroism extended well beyond the playing field.

The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game
The Blind Side
Evolution of a Game
Paperback      ISBN: 0393330478

When we first meet him, Michael Oher is one of thirteen children by a mother addicted to crack; he does not know his real name, his father, his birthday, or how to read or write. He takes up football, and school, after a rich, white, Evangelical family plucks him from the streets. Then two great forces alter Oher: the family's love and the evolution of professional football itself into a game where the quarterback must be protected at any cost. Our protagonist becomes the priceless package of size, speed, and agility necessary to guard the quarterback's greatest vulnerability, his blind side.

No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks
No Shortcuts to the Top
Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks
Hardcover      ISBN: 0767924703

For 18 years, Viesturs pursued climbing's holy grail: to stand atop the world's fourteen 8,000-meter peaks, without the aid of bottled oxygen. However, No Shortcuts to the Top is as much about the man who would become the first American to achieve that goal as it is about his stunning quest.

America's Coach: Life Lessons & Wisdom for Gold Medal Success: A Biographical Journey of the Late Hockey Icon Herb Brooks
America's Coach
Life Lessons & Wisdom for Gold Medal Success: A Biographical Journey of the Late Hockey Icon Herb Brooks
Paperback      ISBN: 0963487191

Get the official, authorized biography of the late hockey icon Herb Brooks, the legendary coach of the 1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Miracle on Ice. This book chronicles his rise to the National Hockey League and delves into the secrets of his success.

Sandy Koufax: A Lefty's Legacy
Sandy Koufax
A Lefty's Legacy
1st Edition    Hardcover      ISBN: 0060195339

"The incomparable and mysterious Sandy Koufax is revealed.... This is an absorbing book, beautifully written." --Wall Street Journal

"Leavy has hit it out of the park...A lot more than a biography. It's a consideration of how we create our heroes, and how this hero's self perception distinguishes him from nearly every other great athlete in living memory... a remarkably rich portrait." -- Time

The instant New York Times bestseller about the baseball legend and famously reclusive Dodgers' pitcher Sandy Koufax, from award-winning former Washington Post sportswriter Jane Leavy. Sandy Koufax reveals, for the first time, what drove the three-time Cy Young award winner to the pinnacle of baseball and then--just as quickly--into self-imposed exile.

Kent Hrbek's Tales from the Minnesota Twins Dugout
Kent Hrbek's Tales from the Minnesota Twins Dugout
Hardcover      ISBN: 1596702524

In his Minnesota Twins career, Kent Hrbek hit 293 home runs and helped his team to two World Series titles. But fans remember the hulking first baseman for much more than his solid play. Hrbek is a Twin Cities lifer, starring at Kennedy High School in nearby Bloomington, Minnesota before signing with the Twins. In fourteen major-league seasons, the only uniform Hrbek wore was the Twins. And since his retirement in 1994, Hrbek has remained visible in the Twin cities, whether assisting charity functions or hosting his locally broadcast outdoors show. In Kent Hrbeks Tales from the Twins Dugout, the fan favorite looks back at his playing career in Minnesota. Many stories revolve around the championship seasons of 1987 and 1991. Hrbek also shares his memories of the late Kirby Puckett, the star of those championship teams. He tells of his close friendshipand the sudden end of that relationshipwith third baseman Gary Gaetti. Kent Hrbeks Tales from the Twins Dugout is a humorous, insightful, and at times heartbreaking story of one of the most memorable eras in team history, from one of Minnesotas very own.

A Sense of Where You Are: Bill Bradley at Princeton
A Sense of Where You Are
Bill Bradley at Princeton
Paperback      ISBN: 0374526893

When John McPhee met Bill Bradley, both were at the beginning of their careers. A Sense of Where You Are, McPhee's first book, is about Bradley when he was the best basketball player Princeton had ever seen. McPhee delineates for the reader the training and techniques that made Bradley the extraordinary athlete he was, and this part of the book is a blueprint of superlative basketball. But athletic prowess alone would not explain Bradley's magnetism, which is in the quality of the man himself--his self-discipline, his rationality, and his sense of responsibility. Here is a portrait of Bradley as he was in college, before his time with the New York Knicks and his election to the U.S. Senate--a story that suggests the abundant beginnings of his professional careers in sport and politics.

King of the World: Muhammed Ali and the Rise of an American Hero
King of the World
Muhammed Ali and the Rise of an American Hero
Paperback      ISBN: 0375702296
The bestselling biography of Muhammad Ali--with an Introduction by Salman Rushdie

On the night in 1964 that Muhammad Ali (then known as Cassius Clay) stepped into the ring with Sonny Liston, he was widely regarded as an irritating freak who danced and talked way too much. Six rounds later Ali was not only the new world heavyweight boxing champion: He was "a new kind of black man" who would shortly transform America's racial politics, its popular culture, and its notions of heroism.

No one has captured Ali--and the era that he exhilarated and sometimes infuriated--with greater vibrancy, drama, and astuteness than David Remnick, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Lenin's Tomb (and editor of The New Yorker). In charting Ali's rise from the gyms of Louisville, Kentucky, to his epochal fights against Liston and Floyd Patterson, Remnick creates a canvas of unparalleled richness. He gives us empathetic portraits of wisecracking sportswriters and bone-breaking mobsters; of the baleful Liston and the haunted Patterson; of an audacious Norman Mailer and an enigmatic Malcolm X. Most of all, King of the World does justice to the speed, grace, courage, humor, and ebullience of one of the greatest athletes and irresistibly dynamic personalities of our time.