The Legendary John Wooden (1910 – 2010)

With the passing of John Wooden last week several tributes have emerged.  It’s amazing what he was able to accomplish through his career and the character with which he was able to accomplish it.

I think Wooden’s life is a reminder to us all that how we go about our lives is as important as what we do.  Growing up around the game of basketball and with a father who coached most of my life, I see the immense impact Wooden had on the game but particularly on his players.

Some of my favorite Wooden quotes:

Adversity is the state in which man mostly easily becomes acquainted with himself, being especially free of admirers then.

Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.

Be prepared and be honest.

Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.

Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.

If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?

It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.

Material possessions, winning scores, and great reputations are meaningless in the eyes of the Lord, because He knows what we really are and that is all that matters.

If your accomplishments are wrapped up in building up other people, you will have a legacy that lasts.  I try and reserve the word hero for only those who truly deserve it.  John Wooden deserves it.

There is some great tribute videos on ESPN here.

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