Saturday, June 5, 2010

John Wooden

There are not many role models that come close to John Wooden.  He was not just a great basketball coach - he was a great leader and a great man.

I always admired his astonishing commitment to integrity.  It is missing so much in sports (though both Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus, my two great sports heroes, have it in abundance).

It is fascinating to see all the writing about Wooden upon his death.  The superlatives and the stories about his life are wonderful to read.  The most important thing I read, though, is something I knew about but had forgotten.  He always carried a piece of paper with him, with a creed, given to him by his father when he graduated from grammar school:

  • Be true to yourself.
  • Make each day your masterpiece.
  • Help others.
  • Drink deeply from good books, especially the Bible.
  • Make friendship a fine art.
  • Build a shelter against a rainy day.
  • Pray for guidance and give thanks for your blessings every day.

Words to live by, if you can.

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