Fiction and March Madness do mix!

In honor of todays’ March Madness tip-off,  I’m going to throw out a couple of basketball titles I’ve recently read.

I first saw this book, Don’t put me in, Coach : my incredible NCAA journey from the end of the bench to the end of the benchas a giveaway on Goodreads. The title and the cover really made me laugh and I wanted to get my hands on a copy and read it.

I was totally ignorant about the author and his days as a benchwarmer at Ohio State. Apparently he had quite a following on his blog, Club Trillion during his playing days and through that blog he got this book deal.

Mark Titus was a pretty decent high school basketball player but when he didn’t land a basketball scholarship to play at his dream school Harvard, he decided to join his fellow talented AAU teammates at Ohio State. He was lucky enough to become a walk on with not much playing time, but a loyal fan base.

Being a woman of a certain age, I didn’t really like all his frat boy humor although I could appreciate some of it. I did enjoy reading about Big Ten basketball through the eyes of a player living the dream, especially since he doesn’t take himself too seriously. It’s worth reading if you like college basketball in general and Ohio State basketball in particular.

The second book, The Whore of Akron, was personal for me, and the author as well! As I’ve mentioned before I’m a huge Cleveland sports fan so there was no doubt I was going to read this one!

Scott Raab is also a long-suffering Cleveland sports fan, and his book is written with the feeling and heart that can only come from someone who has lived through the heartbreak of being so tantalizing close to winning numerous championships, only to continuously come up just a little bit short.

Raab’s dissection of LeBron James as both villain and savior is very well done, and made me remember how I loved and hated the guy during his career in Cleveland. There is no doubt that James has a talent that is  superhero like, but he is also really still a kid, that grew up poor with very little guidance.

Was it unfair to hope that this local kid would come to Cleveland and give us our fairy tale ending? Maybe, but it just seemed like finally, the stars were aligning and us long-suffering fans would finally have a championship!

If you want to read about Cleveland fans and their suffering, here is a terrific article that will make all other great sports cities realize they have it pretty darn good ~~

Now let’s just hope I win all my brackets today!


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