But They Can't Beat Us: Oscar Robertson and the Crispus Attacks Tigers

But They Can't Beat Us: Oscar Robertson and the Crispus Attacks Tigers

4.5 2
by Randy Roberts
     
 

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The 1986 film Hoosiers, based on the true story of tiny Milan High School's 1954 state basketball championship, trafficked in familiar indiana images — a backboard and a hoop erected on a pole between a house and a field and a solitary boy arching a basketball against a backdrop of corn, soybeans, and the monotony of the rural Midwest. But in the 1950s another

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Overview

The 1986 film Hoosiers, based on the true story of tiny Milan High School's 1954 state basketball championship, trafficked in familiar indiana images — a backboard and a hoop erected on a pole between a house and a field and a solitary boy arching a basketball against a backdrop of corn, soybeans, and the monotony of the rural Midwest. But in the 1950s another Hoosiers myth was taking shape, one in which urban, poor, black kids came together at Indianapolis's Crispus Attucks High School and overcame greater obstacles and achieved even more than Milan. Led by a talented group of players that included Oscar Robertson and coached by the young and talented Ray Crowe, the Crispus Attucks Tigers won the state championship the next two years in a row, 1955 and 1956. In the first of those years it became the first all-black school to win a championship, and in the second it became the first undefeated state champion. Attucks also was the first Indianapolis team to win the state tournament, a result that brought about mixed emotions among many in the state capital. According to award-winning sports historian Randy Roberts, Attucks "helped define and enshrine the Hoosiers myth by being its negation". An inspiring story that brings together joy, race, and achievement during a critical time in America, the chronicle of Crispus Attucks justifies the Indiana belief that basketball is just about the most important thing there is.

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Editorial Reviews

Cincinnati Enquirer
The author details...instances of racism without flinching and without indulging in guilt-ridden sentimentality to the detriment of his story, which is a memorable one.
Indianapolis Star
Although reflection on the madness of the times is painful, the revival of Attucks' glory years is extremely enjoyable. Also commendable is Roberts' brief history of Indianapolis' black community and the forces that led to the creation of the school.
SLAM! Sports
It can't be beaten. The message that basketball is just about the most important thing there is in Indiana comes across clearly."
StreetZebra Magazine
Through hard work and talent, the Tigers' were able to forge one of the great stories in prep sports history. For fans of high school sports, and particularly Indiana basketball, But They Can't Beat Us is a must read.
Tampa Tribune
...a timely black history lesson...The story of Oscar Robertson alone is a worthy read...serves as a reminder that black schools are nothing to fear or be ashamed of. Many achieved against the odds, which is a recurrent theme in black history.
Terre Terre Haute
Grabs the reader from the prologue on. Roberts suggests that the greatest stories grow `Out of the gloomy past'. The story of Oscar Robertson and his Attucks Tigers is one of those tales. Even if you're broke, you should still buy this book."
Tribune-Star

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781571672575
Publisher:
Sports Publishing LLC
Publication date:
10/01/1999
Pages:
219
Product dimensions:
6.39(w) x 9.34(h) x 0.92(d)

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