There are some Arkansas mentions in this feature, but mainly it was a chance to talk with a basketball Hall of Famer and someone I watched for many years.
Great interview, Clay. I’m too young to remember him as a Bruin but I remember him as a Laker. Won an NBA title there in '72 on the team that set the then-record of 69 regular season wins, since broken by the Bulls and then the Warriors.
We didn’t get into the NBA Stuff. That would have been another couple hours. I focused on NCAA and UCLA and his recruitment. Wooden fascinates me. Nolan and I talked a bit about Wooden not long ago.
Great article, Clay. Gail Goodrich was a great player…a lefty who could shoot and score. He was one of my college heroes when I played junior high and high school ball. I wanted to be like Gail Goodrich and score 30 points a game, but I was a lefty point guard and had to be content with 20 points and 10 assists. One of a point guard’s jobs is to keep your team mates happy and get them enough shots to satisfy them. You know it and they know it.
I remember many times playing by myself at home and pretending I was Gail Goodrich, the smooth lefty from UCLA. I usually got 30 or 40 when I was him.
I loved this story. Hands down one of my favorites in recent times from you Clay.
Wooden fascinates me as well.
You need to tell Sylvia that her school could have had an all-time great UCLA player but failed to see what John Wooden saw. The recruitment of Gail Goodrich was as important to jump starting the Bruins as anything.
You don’t see many guys named Gale. When you do, look out. They’re usually among the best to ever play their sport. Great article Clay!
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