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Even though it's written for high school kids who don't like reading - kids like Jim Thorpe - it will ...
Reviewed in the United States on March 25, 2018
A book for fans of Seabiscuit. Even though it's written for high school kids who don't like reading - kids like Jim Thorpe - it will tell you more about the origins of modern football (e.g. the forward pass, the single wing, the motion back) in the late 1800's and early 1900's than any book you are likely to read. It's as much about coach Pop Warner as about the great Jim Thorpe, both of whom were wandering, battered souls much like the restless, hurt souls of the great Jockey (Red Pollard) and the great trainer (Tom Smith) in Seabiscuit.
It's also a book about the horrors inflicted by whites on Native Americans in schools like the Carlisle Indian School - schools designed to "civilize" Indians by taking the Indian out of them and leaving with "employable" skills that proved useless when graduates found that employers wouldn't hire Indians, skilled or otherwise. Mainly, it's a book about how uprooted Native American students at the Carlisle school, coached by a man who motivated his players to use the game of football to even score of what whites had inflicted on their people, were able over the course of many arduous seasons to finally and decisively demonstrate their superior teamwork, endurance and athletic prowess to the condescending football elites of their time: Yale, Harvard, Princeton and Penn. Handsomely produced, beautifully illustrated, fully researched with exhaustive notes and bibliography, this book is rarity in modern day publishing. Has anyone purchased the movie rights for it?