Monday, March 3, 2008

Pistol Pete Maravich

A friend of mine this last Saturday, dropped off a book for me read: Pistol – The Life of Pete Maravich, by Mark Kriegel. As he handed me the book he said, “I know you don’t read much other than religion and philosophy, but you will love this book!”

Well, he was correct on both counts: I rarely read much that is not directly related to either religion or philosophy, and I loved the book he gave me to read.

The book is certainly well written; I could not put it down. I started it early Sunday evening, and finished it later that evening while in bed. It brought back some fond memories of my early basketball days, and especially the historic event that my father and I were able to witness firsthand: Pete’s NCCA record for the most foul shots completed and attempted in a single game: 30 of 31. This was during his senior year at LSU, and came during the game with the Oregon State Beavers at Gill Coliseum in Corvallis, Oregon—a night I will never forget.

But my interest in Pistol Pete started well before that night; it began when I was playing in a brand new summer basketball program in which some of our district’s high school players would each coach a team of 6th graders from one of the local grade schools (if I remember correctly, there were 8 teams). My team took second place, and I ended up being the leading scorer for our new summer league. I got a few comments from some of the parents watching the games that I was a “little Pistol Pete”. “Pistol Pete, who is that” I asked. Well Pete had just finished his freshman year at LSU, and was already becoming a legend. That young farm boy began to follow Pete’s extraordinary career after that summer, and was later shocked by his tragic death in the arms of the Christian psychologist, Dr. James Dobson…

Anyway, I thought I knew a fair amount the Pistol, that is, until I finished Kriegal’s book. This book is a must read for anyone with the slightest interest in the great sport of basketball, and a great preparation for the upcoming “March Madness”!!!

Grace and peace,


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