Breaking Through: John B. McLendon, Basketball Legend and Civil Rights Pioneer

Overview

John B. McLendon was the last living protégé of basketball's inventor, Dr. James Naismith, and one of the "top ten basketball coaches of the century" in Billy Packer's opinion. McLendon's amazing records in college and pro basketball earned him a spot in the Basketball Hall of Fame (the first black coach to be inducted), and his coaching philosophy has had a huge influence on basketball coaches. Breaking Through is also a powerful and inspirational story about segregation and a champion's struggle for equality in...

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Breaking Through: John B. McLendon, Basketball Legend and Civil Rights Pioneer

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Overview

John B. McLendon was the last living protégé of basketball's inventor, Dr. James Naismith, and one of the "top ten basketball coaches of the century" in Billy Packer's opinion. McLendon's amazing records in college and pro basketball earned him a spot in the Basketball Hall of Fame (the first black coach to be inducted), and his coaching philosophy has had a huge influence on basketball coaches. Breaking Through is also a powerful and inspirational story about segregation and a champion's struggle for equality in 1940s and 50s America. Black Magic, ESPN's Peabody Award–winning documentary about players and coaches who attended historically black colleges and universities, covers many of the events in McLendon's life that Katz writes about in his book.

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What People Are Saying

Marty Blake
"A must read for everyone who loves the history of basketball. John McLendon did for the court game what Jackie Robinson did for baseball, only Coach John's efforts as a civil rights pioneer cover seven decades."--(Marty Blake, NBA director of scouting.)
Earl Lloyd
"Coach Mac was ahead of his time as a coach, and he was an outstanding human being. Breaking Through will teach readers something about adversity and how to prevail, about what it means to earn respect at the highest level."--(Earl Lloyd, NBA Hall of Famer and first African-American to play in the NBA)
Joe A. Buckhalter
"This book is an essential read for all people interested in sports, particularly the basketball devotee."--(Joe A. Buckhalter, Jr., former NBA player and Harlem Globetrotter)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557289513
  • Publisher: University of Arkansas Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2010
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 1,461,346
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.70 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Milton S. Katz is professor of American studies, School of Liberal Arts, Kansas City Art Institute. He is the author ofBan the Bomb and over two dozen book chapters, articles, and essays on peace and social justice movements in contemporary American history. He met John McLendon in 1980 and became close friends with him after spending untold hours interviewing him and researching his life

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Table of Contents


Foreword   Billy Packer     ix
Foreword   Ian Naismith     xiii
Preface     xv
Acknowledgments     xix
Introduction     xxi
A Kansas Childhood and the Love of the Game, 1915-33     1
The University of Kansas and Dr. James Naismith, 1933-36     11
Establishing a Tradition of Excellence: North Carolina College, 1937-52     25
A Pioneer for Integration: The National Basketball Association and the National Athletic Steering Committee, 1950-53     59
Groundbreaking Championship Years at Tennessee A&I State University, 1954-59     75
Blazing New Trails: The Cleveland Pipers, 1959-62     111
Back to the College Game: Kentucky State College and Cleveland State University, 1963-69     149
The First Black Coach in the American Basketball Association: The Denver Rockets, 1969     169
National and International Ambassador of Basketball for Converse, Inc., 1969-89     181
Return to Cleveland State University: Professor, Advisor, Historian, and "Just a Man," 1989-99     199
Appendix     221
Notes     225
Bibliography     243
Index     250
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