From the legendary Oklahoma coach, a deeply reflective and incredibly candid memoir that explores the overwhelming pressures and extraordinary joys of leading one of our most storied football institutions
As a son of a high school football coach in Youngstown, Ohio, Bob Stoops's life was shaped by the gridiron from day one. At home, his father, who literally gave his life to the sport after dying on the sidelines during a game, would shut off the kitchen lights and watch film projected on to the family's refrigerator over home-cooked meals. But despite the preparation, Stoops, an undersized and under-recruited player, didn't have much hope for football stardom. That all changed however after a lucky break and a lot of hard work. He fought his way on to the starting line up at the University of Iowa where he would go on to win a Rose Bowl as a ferocious defensive back.In Stoops's journey from player to struggling graduate assistant to legendary head coach, it becomes clear that his dedication to football is about far more than the sport itself. Big Game Bob, as he is known by adorning Sooners, made a name for himself not only by rebuilding the OU football program and leading the team to multiple conference championships but also by adhering to a strong set of principles at a time when corruption was rampant across the NCAA. From his first win as an assistant at Kansas State, breaking a thirty-one game losing streak, to standing with his players in protest of a racist incident on OU's campus, Stoops emerges as an upstanding, dedicated, and inspirational leader. His tireless though unsustainable work ethic-which was always clear to his players, colleagues, and family-became evident to the legion of Sooner fans when Stoops decided to step down as head coach, seemingly at his prime, in 2017 in order to leave the team in the best position for success. Now a household name in Big 12 country, Stoops's story promises to become one of the most engaging and eye-opening football memoirs to emerge in generations.
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