A SEASON ON THE
Sample: ''The problem is you aren't hurt enough.
You're sitting here satisfied because you played a good game.
All I want to do is go into a room somewhere and cry. I could
just cry. Boys, there's no such thing as a moral victory. The
game was there to win and we lost. If you just followed the
rules, we would have won. Instead, those cheating
The setting: Bloomington, a college town in the great
state of Indiana.
The protagonists: A wonderful, weird, combustible
college basketball coach called Bobby Knight. One of his
Indiana University teams. And the author.
Why it is brilliant: Warts and all, I believe is the
expression. By the mid-1980s, this style of book - where an
author followed a sports team for a season - was nothing new,
particularly in the United States. But Feinstein got lucky
with unfettered access to the extraordinary Knight, a walking
quote machine and a fascinating case study. He swears (lots),
yells, throws his weight around and acts pretty terribly, but
he also displays his phenomenal coaching gifts. Feinstein
sees, and writes, it all.
Don't just take my word for it: ''Perhaps the best
basketball book ever written.'' - Dayton Daily News.
The aftermath: Knight never spoke to Feinstein again.
But Feinstein didn't care, as he started churning out the
best-sellers. Brian Dennehy starred as Knight in a 2002
television movie of the book. Knight got the boot from
Indiana after manhandling one too many players, and is now a