Glory Road : My Story of the 1966 NCAA Basketball Championship and How One Team Triumphed Against the Odds and Changed America Fore
Overview - Timed to the release of Jerry Bruckheimer's movie, the moving autobiography of Hall of Fame basketball coach Don Haskins and his storied team of players, the Texas Western Miners In 1966, college basketball was almost completely segregated. Read more...
More About Glory Road by Don Haskins; Dan Wetzel
Timed to the release of Jerry Bruckheimer's movie, the moving autobiography of Hall of Fame basketball coach Don Haskins and his storied team of players, the Texas Western Miners
In 1966, college basketball was almost completely segregated. In the championship game for the NCAA title that year, Don Haskins, coach of the then little-known Texas Western College, did something that had never been done before in the history of college basketball. He started five black players, and in the now legendary game, unseated the nationally top-ranked University of Kentucky. Broadcast on television throughout the country, the Miners victory became the impetus for the desegregation of all college teams in the South during the next few years.
Now, for the first time, Hall of Fame coach Don Haskins tell his story. Beginning as a small-town high school basketball coach, Haskins was known for his tough coaching methods and larger-than-life personality. As a child growing up during the Dust Bowl in Oklahoma, he developed a strong set of values and discipline that he would instill in his players throughout his coaching career. With recollections from his former players, including those of the 1966 team, along with Haskins's own Seven Principles for Success, Glory Road
is the inspiring story of a living legend and one of the most respected coaches of all time.
With a foreword by basketball legend Bobby Knight, and coinciding with the release of the film Glory Road
, the story of Don Haskins and his championship team is sure to become a classic for sports fans and historians.
A whole new game
Don Haskins only coached in one Final Four, but it was arguably the most important such appearance in history. Haskins led the Texas Western Miners in 1966 when the team started an all-African-American lineup against an all-white Kentucky team in the final. The result has been called the Brown v. Board of Education of college basketball. Texas Western (which changed its name to the University of Texas at El Paso the following summer) won the national title, and segregated teams were instantly on their way out.
That game was the subject of a recent movie that shares the title of Haskins' autobiography, Glory Road. Haskins, a no-frills personality if there ever was one, tells the overdue story about how a team from El Paso came out of virtually nowhere to change the game forever. Haskins loved to coach, and he liked to win. He did both with boys' and girls' prep teams, and won several hundred games once he took over at Texas Western.
Haskins has a simple yet eloquent explanation as to why his team had five black starters: "I just started my best players." Isn't that what coaching is all about? It didn't occur to him to do anything else. It's nice to get his memories on paper in this entertaining memoir, written with Dan Wetzel.
Budd Bailey works in the sports department of the Buffalo News.