Hard Work: A Life On and Off the Court

Hard Work: A Life On and Off the Court

by Tim Crothers, Roy Williams
     
 

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Now in paperback, updated with an afterword and new photos.

One of the most respected and successful basketball coaches in the nation, Coach Roy Williams has traveled an unlikely path. In Hard Work¸ he tells the story of his life, from his turbulent childhood through a coaching career with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. With his newSee more details below

Overview

Now in paperback, updated with an afterword and new photos.

One of the most respected and successful basketball coaches in the nation, Coach Roy Williams has traveled an unlikely path. In Hard Work¸ he tells the story of his life, from his turbulent childhood through a coaching career with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. With his new afterword, Williams takes us past the two NCAA championship titles to the subsequent 2010 season, its shake-up losses, the unexpected departure of key players, and on to a new season of coaching some of the most dazzling young players in the country—and a surprising ACC championship.

Williams recounts his rough early years; his long tenure as head coach at the University of Kansas; how he recruits, teaches, and motivates his players; how he’s shepherded teams through some of the most nail-biting games at both Kansas and UNC; and how he suffered through one of the roughest seasons of his tenure and came out on the other side to be awarded 2011 ACC Coach of the Year.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Williams, the men's basketball coach at the University of Kansas (1988–2003) and at the University of North Carolina (2003–present), describes his personal and professional path to a Hall of Fame coaching career and two national championships. Ignored by his abusive, drunken father and raised primarily by a cash-strapped, saintly single mother, Williams paid for his college education at UNC by officiating intramural sports. When Dean Smith, that school's legendary basketball coach, offered Williams a low-paying job on his coaching staff, Williams accepted and sold calendars and delivered videotapes to TV stations to feed his family. As a head coach, Williams's dedication extends to landing recruits and running organized, thorough practices. And he's done all this while maintaining a cohesive family life. (He's married to his college sweetheart.) Well-intentioned and upbeat, the book treads the familiar ground of glossy, inspirational sports biographies. Williams recalls passionate speeches, great players (i.e., Michael Jordan, James Worthy) and various anecdotes from the coaching life, but never delivers consistent insight on the workings of a successful coach at two legendary sports programs. However, the book is redeemed by Williams's genial (and borderline hokey) tone and the forthright revelations of his tumultuous childhood and early days coaching in high school and college. 16-page photo insert. (Nov.)
Kirkus Reviews
A Hall of Fame college-basketball coach chronicles his rise from poor son of an alcoholic father to winner of two national championships at his alma mater, the University of North Carolina. It's difficult to take seriously a man who habitually eschews curse words in favor of epithets like "dadgum," so it's fortunate that Williams has built up serious credibility during his distinguished career as the head coach at UNC and the University of Kansas. Williams' aw-shucks demeanor masks the inner fury of an intense competitor, a man so driven to win that he invents new competitions just to give himself another chance at victory. A near-perfect embodiment of the American Dream, he endured a hardscrabble youth dominated by a violent father-who ultimately abandoned the family-before climbing down out of a family tree filled with far more scoundrels than scholars. The scrappy Williams overcame those inherent disadvantages and carved out a niche for himself as a junior-varsity player at UNC, foregoing varsity scholarships at smaller schools, before giving up his playing career to focus on coaching. While on-court emotion and intensity account for much of his success, these attributes sometimes overpower the narrative. Williams' unrelenting desire to convey his earnest belief in hard work and love for his family, friends and players (Tyler Hansbrough in particular) is as cloying as it is compelling-he opens by recalling bouts of insomnia prior to the 2009 season brought about because he so desperately wanted Hansbrough to win a championship in his senior season. Still, the legions of Carolina fans will relish stories-including the recruitment of Michael Jordan-from Williams' days as an assistantunder legendary coach Dean Smith; college-basketball fans will admire his tenaciousness; and Kansas fans may finally forgive ol' Roy for leaving (well, maybe not). Williams coaches far better than he writes, but he does spin a good yarn. First printing of 150,000

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781616201289
Publisher:
Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
Publication date:
10/11/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
467,570
File size:
6 MB

What People are saying about this

Buzz Bissinger
“Roy Williams’ story is honest, sincere, self-effacing, insightful and engaging . . . It also provides a stirring road map on how to live life, not simply on the basketball court but off of it.” —Buzz Bissinger, author of Shooting Stars, with LeBron James, and Friday Night Lights

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