BraveHearts: The Against-All Odds Rise of Gonzaga Basketball

BraveHearts: The Against-All Odds Rise of Gonzaga Basketball

By Bud Withers, Jay Bilas, John Stockton (Foreword)


Tucked away in the corner of country, Gonzaga University, a small Jesuit college in Spokane, Washington, was maybe best known as the alma mater of Bing Crosby. In other words, it really wasn’t known at all.

That all changed in 1998. That year, Gonzaga’s men’s Division 1 basketball team won their first game in the NCAA tournament. Then they won their next game. And their next one. Suddenly, the funny sounding school with little basketball heritage and a fraction of the resources of most big time college basketball programs, was one game away from the Final Four. It stunned the college basketball world and made the once unpronounceable Gonzaga a household name.

Most remarkable of all, however, is that Gonzaga has continued to stun the college basketball world, making deep runs into the NCAA tournament almost every year since then—and without compromising on the small-school values that still separate it from the basketball factories in terrorizes each March.

Little Big Man is the inspirational and touching story of Gonzaga’s rise from college basketball obscurity to near mythic status as everyone’s favorite underdog. Acclaimed college basketball writer Bud Withers has covered the Zags since it all begin. In dramatic, and at times poignant, fashion he reanimates the events of the last few years, adding flesh to the personalities and summoning the details, great and small, that make up this unforgettable story. Readers will meet players such as big time high school recruit Blake Stepp, who chose Gonzaga because of what it wasn’t, a big time school. They’ll meet Dan Dickau, who transferred from the big state school to become an All American and cover boy at Gonzaga. They’ll meet former coach Dan Monson, who instilled a fearless attitude among the players, and Mark Few, the current coach who parlayed that into even greater success. Finally, they’ll meet Father Tony Lehmann, the longtime chaplain who died in March of 2002. The inspirational leader of the basketball team, Lehmann touched the lives of untold numbers of Gonzaga players, past and present, and his life and influence courses through the story.

About the Author
Bud Withers is the college basketball writer for the Seattle Times. He’s covered college basketball for 31 years and was president of the US Basketball Writers Association for two years (where he succeeded John Feinstein). He’s won numerous writing awards from several different organizations, including the USBWA, Associated Press Sports Editors, and the Football Writers Association of America

Publisher: Triumph Books
224 pages
ISBN:  1572434996



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