With every great story, comes a great film. While not every moment can be captured in three hours of entertainment, the lessons at the core of each journey are usually the most memorable. We wanted to share some of the great lessons we learned from some of our favorite sports films.
The film: The 1996 film, Hoosiers is based on the true, “Cinderella” story of a small-town Indiana basketball team who made it all the way to their state finals in 1954. The movie focuses on a coach with a questionable past, as well as a former basketball star turned alcoholic. As they attempt to lead this small-town team to victory, the coaches must restore their reputations and teach their players how to work together.
The lesson: Faced with great odds, both the coaches and team must learn to be resilient and remain focused on their ultimate goal. From this journey, we learn the valuable lessons of teamwork, discipline and the long road to redemption.
The film: Coach Carter takes place in the 1990’s and revolves around a successful store manager who accepts a basketball coaching position at his former high school. He returns to find that the school’s current players display poor attitudes and a lack of respect for authority.
The lesson: The example that Coach Carter sets for his players is ultimately what creates unity. He is determined to show each member of his team that the future goes beyond the four walls of their high school gym. Another great lesson from the film is the importance of persistence and perseverance. Coach Carter believed in a better future for his team and fought to see it through.
The film: The 2006 film Glory Road portrayed the events leading up to the 1966 NCAA Men’s Division 1 Basketball Championship. Don Haskins, the head coach of Texas Western College at the time, coached the first team in NCAA history with an all-black starting lineup.
The lesson: Coach Don Haskins and his team faced innumerable odds as they attempted to progress amid the animosity they received from others. The lesson to be learned here is one of perseverance when faced with extreme adversity.
The film: Blue Chips tells the story of college basketball coach Pete Bell, who is under a great deal of pressure from a losing season. He knows he must attract star players, and quick. Bell eventually discovers that rival schools are secretly paying star players for their stellar performances on the court. With seemingly no other option, Pete gives in to his desperation and promises compensation to top recruits. After giving in to the players’ demands, Bell realizes that the ends don’t always justify the means.
The lesson: Coach Bell eventually admits his fault, confesses to his cheating and resigns as head coach. From this, we learn that doing the right thing is not always easy nor is it always the most popular choice.