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Adult Book Lists: Stories From the Field: Football Nonfiction

[Printable book list]

Bill Moushey / 364.1530917 MOUSHEY
Game Over: Jerry Sandusky, Penn State, and the Culture of Silence
In a place called Happy Valley, one of the worst scandals in U.S. sports history rocked the nation and Division I college sports. On November 6, 2011, Jerry Sandusky, a former coach under Penn State football legend Joe Paterno, was arrested following allegations of child sexual abuse. In this book, two journal-ists investigate claims of a cover-up within the Penn State hierarchy.

Josh Luchs / 338.47796 LUCHS
Illegal Procedure: a Sports Agent Comes Clean on the Dirty Business of College Football
After fifteen years as a sports agent making illegal deals with college athletes, exchanging no-interest loans with players for a spot on their pro contracts, Josh Luchs cleaned up his act and became a whistle-blower. Luchs tells his story and reveals how agents win players, the profit colleges make from their unpaid players, and the truth behind full-ride scholar-ships.

Joe Nick Patoski / 796.33262 PATOSKI 
Texas High School Football: More Than Game
This book explores how football connects indi-viduals and creates communities throughout Texas — from small rural schools to large, 5A suburban campuses. The book includes a fo-cus on all parts of the sport, from legendary players and coaches to marching bands and mascots, which helps to illustrate the history of the sport.

Jim Dent / 796.33263 DENT
The Kids Got It Right: How the Texas All-Stars Kicked Down Racial Walls
Take a journey back to 1965 during a point in histo-ry where black and white players were segregated in Texas. Following a devastating defeat, Texas Coach Bobby Layne appealed to Texas Governor Connally to resolve a scheduling conflict to free up all-star players and to also allow for the recruit-ment of black players. This story follows the friend-ship of two of the players who led their team in a showdown at Hershey Stadium in Pennsylvania.

Samuel G. Freedman / 796.332 FREEDMAN
Breaking the Line: the Season in Black College Football That Transformed the Sport and Changed the Course of Civil Rights
This is the story of four leaders and their team-mates who stormed the 1967 football season in an effort to win the black college championship. Freedman also highlights how the efforts of these teams helped influence the segregated Southern colleges to integrate their teams.

Chris Carter / 796.332 CARTER
Going Deep: How Wide Receivers Became the Most Compelling Figures in Pro Sports
Former NFL player Cris Carter and ESPN journalist Jeffri Chadiha retrace the emergence of the wide receiver and illustrate how it became the most complex and compelling position in professional sports. The book covers every one from Michael Irvin to Keyshawn Johnson to Terrell Owens, and reveals stories readers have never heard.

George Plimpton / 796.332092 PLIMPTON
Paper Lion: Confessions of a Last-String Quarterback
Best known for his “participatory journalism”, Plimpton took an active role in the topics he covered. In Paper Lion, Plimpton trains with the Detroit Lions during their camp and practices with the team, recounting the shenanigans, pressures, and the rites of passage on and off the field.

Derrick Coleman / 796.332092 COLEMAN
No Excuses: Growing Up Deaf and Achieving My Super Bowl Dreams
Coleman shares his journey as the first deaf athlete to play offense in the NFL. Never one to take “no” for an answer, Coleman, with the support of his family, pushed toward his NFL dreams. Every challenge he encountered along the way only helped to strengthen his character.

Nate Jackson / 796.332092 JACKSON
Slow Getting Up: a Story of NFL Survival From the Bottom of the Pile
Jackson tells the story of his journey from a Division III school to alternating between the practice squad and the active roster on the Denver Broncos. His experience tells the story of the hundreds of players whose lives are very different from that of their superstar colleagues.

Jeanne Marie Laskas / 617.51044 LASKAS
In 2002, Dr. Bennet Omalu made a discovery that would shock the NFL. After dissecting the brain of retired center for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Mike Webster, Dr. Omalu discovered signs of what he later termed “chronic traumatic encephalopathy” (CTE). This discovery set in motion a heated debate between the NFL and Dr. Omalu’s re-search that would change the public’s view of American football and the health of its players.

Jackson Michael / 796.33264 MICHAEL
The Game Before the Money: Voice of the Men Who Built the NFL
This book features personal accounts from players from the 1930s through the 1970s that trace professional football’s journey from its earliest day through the first two decades of the Super Bowl. Discover the backstories to classic games before the era of multi-million dollar contracts.

Mark Edmundson / 796.332092 EDMUNSO
Why Football Matters: My Education in the Game
Edmundson revisits the football-playing days of his youth. He started off a shy and unsure high school player before growing into a more inept and tougher athlete. Through the eyes of adult-hood, Edmundson takes a look back at his youth and explores the affect playing football had on his life and development.

Daniel Rodriguez / 956.7044 RODRIGUE
Rise: a Soldier, a Dream, and a Promise Kept
At nineteen, Daniel Rodriguez enlisted in the army and was deployed to Iraq and, later, Afghanistan. He was awarded a Purple Heart and the Bronze Star for his bravery, but suffered from PTSD after his return home. But he didn’t give up and made good on his promise to his friend that, once he made it out of the war, he’d play college football. This is his story.

Lars Anderson / 551.55309761 ANDERSON
The Storm and the Tide: Tragedy, Hope, and Triumph in Tuscaloosa
Following a powerful tornado that devastated Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Nick Saban, the University of Alabama football coach, and his football team went out into the community to aide in the recovery. “Let’s play for Tuscaloosa” became the rallying cry and the Crimson Tide football team began to compete for a cause much greater than a national championship.

Bryan Mealer / 796.33262 MEALER
Muck City: Winning and Losing a Football's Forgotten Town
The Florida town of Belle Glade is plagued by poverty, drugs, and violent crime. Follow the journey of three residents as they fight to achieve something positive. Mario Rowley, the quarterback for Glades Central High School, works to achieve his dream of a championship victory; Jessie Hester, the town’s first NFL star, returns home hopeful; and Jonteria Williams must prevail against great odds to achieve her dream of becoming a doctor.

Daniel J. Flynn / 796.332 FLYNN
The War on Football: Saving America's Game
In this book, Flynn argues against the criticism that football has received: debilitating and untreated concussions that lead to elevated suicide rates and earlier death rates among players, as well as disproportionate rates of heart disease — the list goes on. Flynn argues these statistics are based on “lawyers clamoring for billion-dollar settlements in scam litigation” and that the sport is actually safer than skateboarding, bicycling, or skiing.

John U. Bacon / 796.33263 BACON
Fourth and Long: the Fight for the Soul of College Football
In his book, Bacon ruminates on his experience embedded in four college football programs: Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan, and Northwestern. He sees everything from a team’s angry face-off with their athletic director to a defensive lineman acing his master’s exams in theoretical math. He also finds what was missed in the media following the aftermath of Penn State’s Jerry Sandusky scandal. Overall, Bacon works to honor the history and legacy of college football.

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