John Wooden biography

John Wooden

Coach, Basketball Coach

1910 – 2010

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Who was John Wooden?

John Robert Wooden was an American basketball player and coach. Nicknamed the "Wizard of Westwood", he won ten NCAA national championships in a 12-year period—seven in a row—as head coach at UCLA, an unprecedented feat. Within this period, his teams won a record 88 consecutive games. He was named national coach of the year six times.

As a player, Wooden was the first to be named basketball All-American three times, and he won a Helms Athletic Foundation National Championship at Purdue in 1932, seven years before the birth of the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship. Wooden was named a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame as a player and as a coach, the first person ever enshrined in both categories. Only Lenny Wilkens and Bill Sharman have since had the same honor.

One of the most revered coaches in the history of sports, Wooden was beloved by his former players, among them Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Bill Walton. Wooden was renowned for his short, simple inspirational messages to his players, including his "Pyramid of Success". These often were directed at how to be a success in life as well as in basketball.

Famous Quotes:

  • Success comes from knowing that you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.
  • It isn't what you do, but how you do it.
  • Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there.
  • Young people need models, not critics...
  • Although I wanted my players to work to win, I tried to convince them they had always won when they had done their best.
  • Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.
  • You can't live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.
  • I always tried to make clear that basketball is not the ultimate. It is of small importance in comparison to the total life we live. There is only one kind of life that truly wins, and that is the one that places faith in the hands of the Savior. Until that is done, we are on an aimless course that runs in circles and goes nowhere.
  • There are many things that are essential to arriving at true peace of mind, and one of the most important is faith, which cannot be acquired without prayer.
  • Nothing will work unless you do.

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"John Wooden." Biographies.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 25 Nov. 2020. <https://www.biographies.net/people/en/john_wooden>.


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Born
Oct 14, 1910
Hall
Also known as
  • John R Wooden
Ethnicity
  • Caucasian race
Nationality
  • United States of America
Profession
Education
  • Indiana State University
  • Martinsville High School
  • Purdue University
Employment
  • University of California, Los Angeles
    (1948 - 1975)
Lived in
  • Indiana
Died
Jun 4, 2010
Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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