Win One for the Gipper: America's Football Hero

Overview

Like most boys growing up in Michigan in the early 1900s, George Gipp enjoyed playing sports. But even as a small boy, his athletic skills set him apart from the others. When he is awarded a baseball scholarship to the University of Notre Dame, his future seems set. An afternoon's horseplay with a football, however, brings George to the attention of assistant football coach Knute Rockne, and Notre Dame football is transformed forever. Setting records and winning fans' hearts, George seems unstoppable -- until ...
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Overview

Like most boys growing up in Michigan in the early 1900s, George Gipp enjoyed playing sports. But even as a small boy, his athletic skills set him apart from the others. When he is awarded a baseball scholarship to the University of Notre Dame, his future seems set. An afternoon's horseplay with a football, however, brings George to the attention of assistant football coach Knute Rockne, and Notre Dame football is transformed forever. Setting records and winning fans' hearts, George seems unstoppable -- until cruel fate intervenes. Now, for every young reader who has ever wondered about the phrase "Win one for the Gipper," comes the inspiring story of the legendary George Gipp.Kathy-jo Wargin has written such bestselling titles as The Legend of Sleeping Bear, The Legend of the Loon, and The Edmund Fitzgerald: Song of the Bell. She is a faculty member of the Bear River Writers Workshop, sponsored by the University of Michigan. She lives with her family in Petoskey, Michigan. Bruce Langton's unmistakable style and unique ability to capture not only sporting and wildlife scenes, but also contemporary landscapes has won him numerous awards including the 1998 Featured Artist for the Northern Wildlife Art Expo. Win One for the Gipper is Bruce's seventh book with Sleeping Bear Press. He lives with his family in Granger, Indiana.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
These well-suited collaborators present a crisp portrait of George Gipp, a gifted athlete from Michigan who landed a baseball scholarship to Notre Dame in 1916. Yet one day, as he kicked around a football with a friend, his talent caught the attention of renowned coach Knute Rockne, who convinced Gipp to join his team. Young football players and fans will most appreciate the author's recap of highlights of Gipp's stellar college football career, during which he repeatedly led his team to victory and became a national sensation. Wargin (The Legend of Sleeping Bear) also imparts a sense of Gipp's likable off-field persona (if he won money playing pool or cards with local folk, "he bought dinner for people who didn't have enough to eat"). Gipp's devotion to his team and fans drove him to play in one game even though he was feverish, resulting in a fatal case of pneumonia. The book's title comes into play in the story's poignant, unabashedly sentimental finale: eight years after Gipp's death, "at just the right moment," Rockne shares with his flagging Notre Dame team the now famous words that the football hero whispered on his deathbed. Those words inspire the team to come back and beat longstanding rival Army. Langton's (B Is for Buckeye) realistic, closely focused paintings do a better job of portraying the bond between Gipp and his coach than in depicting the action on the field. Nonetheless his portraits convincingly convey the hero's gumption and grit. Ages 6-12. (Oct.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
"Win one for the Gipper" is, without a doubt, one of the most memorable lines in sports history. While I am not the world's most knowledgeable or devoted sports fan, I found this to be a memorable book. It follows the extraordinary career of George Gipp, "America's football hero," from boyhood to his untimely death from pneumonia at the age of twenty-five. Like any good receiver, the text neatly dodges both oversimplification and information overload to arrive at a place of drama and poignancy. Its beautiful, luminous illustrations—reminiscent of early American painting—add both a sense of intimacy and history to the text. 2004, Sleeping Bear Press, Ages 6 to 10.
—Courtney Angermeier
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585362219
  • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
  • Publication date: 9/30/2004
  • Series: Sleeping Bear -- True Stories
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 1,398,222
  • Age range: 6 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.38 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2005

    Third Graders Loved the Gipper

    I have just finished reading this to a class of third graders, for the third time. They say they love the story, the action, and the descriptions. The colors in the illustrations really helped bring it all alive. This is the first time this year that the students have requested a book be reread twice. I recommend adding it to your library. I know I will be reading it year after year. Ms Wargin did her research and sorted out the information wonderfully well.

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