I Came as a Shadow

By John Thompson, Jesse Washington,

Book cover of I Came as a Shadow: An Autobiography

Book description

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK

The long-awaited autobiography from Georgetown University’s legendary coach, whose life on and off the basketball court throws America’s unresolved struggle with racial justice into sharp relief

John Thompson was never just a basketball coach and I Came As a Shadow is categorically not just…

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2 authors picked I Came as a Shadow as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

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John Thompson made his mark on basketball as a college coach, not from his two years as Bill Russell’s back-up with the Celtics. But I’ve got a personal interest here: I was a student sportswriter at Georgetown from Coach Thompson’s second year as coach, and as a junior and senior got to attend his weekly press conferences with the student press. I’ve often said I learned more about life from those meetings in Coach’s office than I did from any other class at Georgetown.

I feel the same about…

John Thompson's inspiring and honest account of his life as told to Jesse Washington. The legendary coach grew up in poverty in segregated Washington, DC in the 1950s, and parlayed basketball first into a ticket out of DC to Providence College on a basketball scholarship and then back to DC, as a guidance counselor, then a fill-in high school basketball coach who became a city legend, and then as Georgetown's first Black head basketball coach, when he was hired in 1972. 

Thompson built the Hoyas into a formidable squad by the late 1970s and then, with the arrival of Patrick…

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