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March 26, 2010

The Courage To Coach


College basketball's March Madness is underway. Sixty-five teams start but in the end only one will be the national champion. Nolan Richardson coached the Arkansas Razorbacks to several Final Fours and one NCAA national championship in 1994. But as successful as his career has been, Coach Richardson says he's faced racial discrimination at every step of the way. He talks with Dick Gordon about how he became one of the first black men to break through the white world of coaching in the Old South, and the price he's paid for speaking his mind.

  • Read the new book about Nolan Richardson



Buzz Ridl was the coach of his time. He took little Westminster College in Pennsylvania to the national title 50 years ago this year. There is an event this weekend at Westminster, where many of the players are gathering to remember Coach Buzz Ridl. The coach’s son, Jack, is now a poet. He remembers that national championship, and he remembers the agony of sitting behind the bench, watching his dad try to win. Jack has recently published an entire book of poems that were inspired by his memories of basketball, his father, and the fans. It's called Losing Season. This story originally aired on November 20, 2009.

  • Hear Jack read the poem My Brother A Star
  • Watch a clip of the 1960 championship game, courtesy of the NAIA
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