Photo courtesy the NY Daily News.
Last Friday, UCLA basketball coaching legend John Wooden passed away from natural causes at the age of 99. He won 10 national titles and single-handedly transformed UCLA into a basketball powerhouse. He is a two-time Hall of Famer, inducted in 1961 as a player and 1973 as a coach. Wooden served during World War II as a Navy lieutenant and was a devout Christian. His Pyramid of Success is as much a part of his legacy as his coaching resume. To commemorate his coaching excellence and passion for shaping mens' lives, here are some of his quotes:
"Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out."
"Never mistake activity for achievement."
"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are."
"Be prepared and be honest."
"You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one."
"You can't live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you."
"A coach is someone who can give correction without causing resentment."
"If you're not making mistakes, then you're not doing anything. I'm positive that a doer makes mistakes."
"Ability is a poor man's wealth."
"Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be."
"Don't measure yourself by what you have accomplished, but by what you should have accomplished with your ability."
"It's not so important who starts the game but who finishes it."
"Talent is God-given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. Be careful."
"Success is never final; failure is never fatal. It's courage that counts."
For his Pyramid of Success, see this LA Times graphic. And for a more complete look at Wooden's life, read Jeff Eisenberg's column at Rivals/Yahoo. The last two paragraphs will make you shed a tear.