The Assist

The Assist

Hoops, Hope, and the Game of Their Lives

Book - 2008
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Baker & Taylor
Follows coach Jack O'Brien, who led Boston's Charlestown High School basketball team to victory in several state championships, and chronicles his relationship with two talented African-American basketball players.

Perseus Publishing
Hoop Dreams meets Common Ground in this riveting portrait of a driven basketball coach at an iconic high school, and of his players, each struggling to rise above the many forces pulling them down

Jack O'Brien, the impossibly demanding basketball coach at Charlestown High School in Boston, has led his team to five state championship titles in six years. Less talked about is O'Brien's other winning record: Nearly every one of the players who stuck with his program?poor kids growing up in high-crime neighborhoods and saddled with the lousy educational system available in urban America?managed to get to college. But O'Brien is no saint. Saints give without expecting anything in return. O'Brien needs his players and their problems as much as they need him.

Revolving around fascinating, complex characters, The Assist is a captivating narrative of a basketball team in pursuit of a championship that also drills down into the legacy of desegregation and explores issues of education, family, and race. O'Brien is a middle-aged white guy coaching an all-black team playing in an all-white neighborhood that three decades ago was at the center of the busing wars dividing cities across the country?a time and place indelibly described in J. Anthony Lukas's powerful book Common Ground. It's the inspiring story of a man who makes a difference, and of boys surmounting nearly impossible odds; it is also the story of the ones who don't make it, and why.

& Taylor

Offers a intriguing portrait of Jack O'Brien, the basketball coach at Boston's Charlestown High School, who has led his teams to a number of state championship titles, and the players who make up his teams, youngsters from high-crime, poverty-stricken neighborhoods who have managed to get to college despite the odds.

Publisher: New York : PublicAffairs, c2008
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781586484699
Characteristics: viii, 373 p., [8] p. of plates : col. ill. ; 25 cm


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