by Brandon B.
March Madness historically has been known as one of the most exciting sporting events of the calendar year. Before you fill out your bracket for the men’s and women’s NCAA basketball tournaments, consider brushing up on your basketball bona fides with the Library. Sixty-eight teams earn spots in the men’s tournament and 32 teams for the women every year. All teams compete in the three-week basketball tournament in their respective regions, vying to make it through to the Sweet Sixteen and Final Four on their way to the Championship game.
Read some terrific accounts celebrating the joy of the game from HCLS’ collection. Former NBA player and ESPN analyst Jalen Rose wrote Got to Give the People What They Want to explain his experiences as a student-athlete at the University of Michigan. Rose was a part of the first college basketball team to start five freshmen in a season.
Kwame Alexander’s Newbery Award-winning The Crossover is a great book for teens who have a passion for sports and poetry. The Crossover is available in a number of accessible formats for teens. The original novel is available as a print book, an audiobook on CD, an e-book and an e-audiobook from Libby/OverDrive, and as an e-book from CloudLibrary. The 2019 graphic novel version, which was a nominee for the Black-Eyed Susan Award, is available in print and as an e-book from Libby/OverDrive.
University of Tennessee coach Pat Summitt’s book Sum it Up: 1,098 Victories, a Couple of Irrelevant Losses, and a Life in Perspective (also available as an e-audiobook from Libby/OverDrive) chronicles her life journey and legendary career, which resulted in eight national championships. In her memoir, Pat Summitt also shares her battles with Alzheimer’s disease and cancer.
You can also watch some of the great basketball films to get in the spirit. The classic film Hoosiers, starring Gene Hackman, showcases a team that battles adversity and triumphs just like all the colleges in the NCAA tournament. Love and Basketball stars Sanaa Lathan and Omar Epps and tells the story of two childhood friends who share their love for each other through their basketball journey.
Just like a great novel or film, the end or destination is not the best part but the journey. When the champion is crowned at the NCAA tournament this year, hard work, determination and adversity, are important characteristics that will help them succeed. It’s time for the tip-off; enjoy the games!
Brandon is a Customer Service Specialist at HCLS Central Branch who loves reading, football, and taking nice long walks around his neighborhood.