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Posted September 9, 2008
Don't be fooled by the media blitz behind this book and the companion book by Sally Jenkins ('The Real All Americans'). It is filled with serious errors and is the product of poor, second hand, research. The 'Long Knives' metaphor around which this book is built is just plain false. Jenkins picked that up from Babe Weyand's first book. He, in turn picked it up from none other than the less than believable 1940-50's sportscaster Bill Stern who included it in a 1948 ghost written book for juvenile readers without single authoritative source behind it. In a lengthy series of correspondence and ghost written articles Warner never mentions the Long Knives pep talk once. Nor do authoritative and contemporaneous (with Warner) football historians such as Allison Danzig and Tim Cohane. As to the double wing, Warner's correspondence, newspaper articles and interviews reveal that the Warner was using the single wing in 1906 and the double wing in 1910. Even Army in this game used the single wing as were many other teams in the Country. The Indians didn't consider Army very important. The 'Big Four' (Harvard, Penn, Princeton and Yale) were far more important to Carlisle and Warner than Army. As to Ike. He was a bit player on a terrible 'D' who was knocked out of the game when, comic book like, he and his teammate Charley Benedict collided headon in a missed attempt to 'high low' Thorpe in the 3d quarter. If the 'Long Knives' metaphor can be distilled into one game it is the 1905 game between Carlisle and the Cadets at West Point - seven years closer to Wounded Knee - and a game far more important on the national stage than the 1912 game. It took a special act of the War Department to be played at all. Jenkins doesn't even mention it. The Indians won that game too. Want more? See my 'There Were No Oysters - The Truth About the 1912 Army vs. Carlisle Game' which I wrote earlier this year in response to Jenkins' and Lars Anderson's companion book about the 1912 game.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 21, 2008
The book examines the plight, reputation, and confusion of identity for the American Indians following the massacre at Wounded Knee. The examination is made through the story of Jim Thorpe, Pop Warner and football at the Carlisle Indian school. The story culminates with a football showdown with the Army team and one of their most famous cadets, Dwight Eisenhower. Especially interesting is the story of college football in its eary days, its brutality, and how rule changes saved the game from being bannedWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.