The Run: Student Book Review

the runThe Run by Eric Crawford is about The University of Louisville basketball team’s run to the NCAA Basketball championship. Readers will discover the hearts and souls of ten of these players and the coach. The media did not think the Louisville team would make it all the way to the finals, but this great team made it happen. Due to the hardworking players, excellent coach, and the unique chapter setting makes this one of the best books I’ve read.

The hardworking players make this book very interesting. For example, the Louisville Basketball Team recorded 20 steals in a win over North Carolina A&T which broke the tournament record for single game steals. At that time, with Peyton Siva and Russ Smith, Louisville had one of the best backcourts in the NCAA. For example, Siva and Smith combined for 32 points, 12 assists, and 8 steals. Later in the tourney the heartbreaking injury happened against Duke. Kevin Ware was going up to block a three pointer and broke his leg and his bone came out. Luke Hancock was the only player with Kevin Ware saying a prayer to him. Because of that prayer Kevin Ware later said to his team and coach, “Just win the game!” At one point in the game Chane Behannan was taken out of the game by Pitino because he was so distraught about Ware’s injury. Montrezl Harell is known as “Doctor of the Dunk.” At one point Behannan was about to sub in for Harell who was hot, Behannan said to Coach Pitino “Leave the freshman out there.” Of course none of this would of happened without the excellent coaching of Rick Pitino.

I appreciate the author’s characterization of the coach. Rick Pitino is an excellent coach, some other coaches even say he’s one of the best of all time. For example, he went to the final four in 1987 with Providence and in 2012 he led them to the final four against Kentucky, but they lost. He is very dedicated to his players. For example, he has a horse whose name is Russdiculous, which is after Russ Smith and a horse named Siva, which is named after Peyton Siva. Coach Pitino has lead this team to winning the tournament by playing defense, you may have heard of this “Offense wins games, Defense wins Championships.” Coach K of the Duke Blue Devils said, “You don’t see it on a day-to-day basis because it’s not a zone press. They run multiple defenses.”Later, Seth Curry said, “They were throwing two bodies at me. I was trying not to force it. Louisville did a good job in the first half of just being conscious of where I was at all times. Credit Them.” Therefore, this says a lot about Pitino and his defense. Suddenly, their offense has been clicking. For example, they have won eight straight games by double digits over teams that were qualified for the NCAA Tournament. They beat Colorado State 82-56 and Colorado State shot 48 percent from the field. So obviously without the terrific coaching Louisville would not be able to win the tournament.

I appreciate the fact that the author took his time to make chapters about the players, games, styles of plays, and the coach. For example, readers may like how Eric Crawford makes a chapter about Russ Smith, Peyton Siva, the game against Duke, NCAA championship game and the art of the steal, chapters. Readers can learn more and more about ten players including Peyton Siva, Russ Smith, Gorgui Deing, Luke Hancock, Chane Behannan, Kevin Ware, Wayne Blackshear, Stephan Van Treese, Montrezl Harell, and Tim Henderson. Readers may like how well the author names his chapters and you will know what the chapters are about right away when you see it.

The hardworking players, excellent coaching, and the unique chapter setting makes this book an intriguing read and grabs the basketball player’s attention. If you like this book you may want to read other books by coach Rick Pitino. His books are called Unbreakable, and The One Day Contracts .

– Jacob Darrow, 6th Grade

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