Página inicialGruposDiscussãoMaisZeitgeist
Pesquise No Site
Este site usa cookies para fornecer nossos serviços, melhorar o desempenho, para análises e (se não estiver conectado) para publicidade. Ao usar o LibraryThing, você reconhece que leu e entendeu nossos Termos de Serviço e Política de Privacidade . Seu uso do site e dos serviços está sujeito a essas políticas e termos.
Hide this

Resultados do Google Livros

Clique em uma foto para ir ao Google Livros

Johnny U: The Life and Times of John Unitas…
Carregando...

Johnny U: The Life and Times of John Unitas (edição: 2006)

de Tom Callahan (Autor)

MembrosResenhasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
1394150,810 (4)3
In a time "when men played football for something less than a living and something more than money," John Unitas was the ultimate quarterback. Rejected by Notre Dame, discarded by the Pittsburgh Steelers, he started on a Pennsylvania sandlot making six dollars a game and ended as the most commanding presence in the National Football League, calling the critical plays and completing the crucial passes at the moment his sport came of age. Johnny U is the first authoritative biography of Unitas, based on hundreds of hours of interviews with teammates and opponents, coaches, family and friends. The depth of Tom Callahan's research allows him to present something more than a biography, something approaching an oral history of a bygone sporting era. It was a time when players were paid a pittance and superstars painted houses and tiled floors in the off-season--when ex-soldiers and marines like Gino Marchetti, Art Donovan, and "Big Daddy" Lipscomb fell in behind a special field general in Baltimore. Few took more punishment than Unitas. His refusal to leave the field, even when savagely bloodied by opposing linemen, won his teammates' respect. His insistence on taking the blame for others' mistakes inspired their love. His encyclopedic football mind, in which he'd filed every play the Colts had ever run, was a wonder. In the seminal championship game of 1958, when Unitas led the Colts over the Giants in the NFL's first sudden-death overtime, Sundays changed. John didn't. As one teammate said, "It was one of the best things about him."… (mais)
Membro:Gregg72340
Título:Johnny U: The Life and Times of John Unitas
Autores:Tom Callahan (Autor)
Informação:Crown (2006), 304 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca, FB/HK
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:Nenhum(a)

Detalhes da Obra

Johnny U: The Life and Times of John Unitas de Tom Callahan

Nenhum(a)
Carregando...

Registre-se no LibraryThing tpara descobrir se gostará deste livro.

Ainda não há conversas na Discussão sobre este livro.

» Veja também 3 menções

Exibindo 4 de 4
I love reading about football, football history, and great players of the past, so I very much enjoyed this biography of John Unitas (1933-2002), one of the best quarterbacks in professional football history.

First a little bit about Johnny U. Unitas grew up in a hard scrabble environment in Pittsburgh. His father died when he was five and his mother and older brother worked hard to keep the family intact. Unitas was a bit light for a football player but was the starting quarterback for his high school. His dream was to play for Notre Dame but he couldn't get in so he went on to play at the University of Louisville in the early 1950's. While the team didn't do very well, Unitas did and his jersey number (#16) is the only one retired by that school. In 1955 Unitas was drafted in the 9th round by the Pittsburgh Steelers of the NFL but was soon cut and ended up playing in a semi-pro league around Pittsburgh. Through the football grapevine the Baltimore Colts brought Unitas in for a tryout in 1956 and was signed to back up starter George Shaw. Shaw went down in the forth game and Unitas held on to the starting job, except when injured, from 1956-1972.

Unitas won 3 NFL championships in his career - the first which many consider to be the most pivotal professional football game ever played - the 1958 NFL Championship where the Baltimore Colts defeated the New York Giants 23-17 in the first overtime game in NFL history. The game was televised nationwide and many credit the game for drawing the public's attention to the National Football League and as the launching pad for today's lucrative television contracts and the sport's wide popularity. Some still refer to this game as the "Greatest Game Ever Played." Unitas was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1979 and is one of four quarterbacks on the NFL's 75th Anniversary All Time Team. (Note I am counting the 1958 and 1959 NFL Championships, which preceded the creation of the Super Bowl, and Super Bowl V as the Colts 3 NFL Championships. I am not counting the 1968 NFL Championship as the Colts lost to the New York Jets in Super Bowl III and Unitas was hurt that year and rarely played.)

Callahan says in his introduction that he sets out to write not just a biography of John Unitas but also to give the reader a sense of what it was like to be a professional football player in the 1950's and 1960's. As a biography of Unitas, Callahan is quite successful. We see Unitas not only through his own eyes, but through the eyes of the players, coaches, family, and friends who knew him. He really brings to life the personality, toughness, smarts, and perseverance that made Unitas the great quarterback and team leader he was throughout his career. The biography also includes interesting short vignettes on other great players on those Colts teams like Gino Marchetti, Eugene "Big Daddy" Lipscomb, Art Donovan, and Jim Parker, to name a few.

Callahan is mostly successful at giving the reader an idea of what it was like to be a player in the 1950's and 1960's, although the way he does so is one of the biggest drawbacks of the biography. The structure and writing is sometimes rather disjointed and not well structured. There are too many asides, long parenthetical comments, or chapters that drift looking backward in time, or in the future, and then coming back to the main point, which was a little frustrating for this reader. While I do not expect a completely linear book - I felt the author could have done a better job of being a bit more seamless in the storytelling.

This drawback aside Callahan does provide one crucial insight - that the players of that era, unlike today, really were part of the community (at least the Colts' players were). Since players made much less money back then a lot of them worked in the off season. Thus they lived, and often worked, in the communities where they played football. Further, they often lived in modest homes among everyday citizens, not tucked away in mansions or high income neighborhoods. As a result, the community became very attached to the organization and the players, and often vice versa. The depiction of the long, historical, close relationship between the Colts and the city of Baltimore really brought home what an awful event losing the team was to the city.

Finally, I have to mention that probably the best chapter was the one dedicated to the 1958 Championship Game. It's told from the perspective of the Colts, not the Giants, and is a game that demonstrated Unitas' leadership in pulling out a victory.

Overall, despite the jumpiness of some of the chapters, I found the biography a worthwhile and interesting reading experience and would recommend it to those who want to know a bit more about Johnny U and his Baltimore Colts.

[Reviewer Note: Author Tom Callahan is a journalist and sportswriter. He has worked at both Time magazine as a senor writer and the Washington Post as a sports columnist.] ( )
  DougBaker | Jul 24, 2019 |
I loved Johnny U growing up as did most kids in the 1960s. The author filled the book with information about Johnny growing up and then playing in the NFL. The author interviewed people who knew Johnny from his playing days. All interesting, but there was nothing in the book that captivated me or made me utter, "Wow!" when I read it. The biggest reason for a lack of Wow power in the book was Johnny Unitas was a pretty conventional fellow. He did not get in trouble and just kept his nose to the football grindstone which made some for some pretty boring reading. One thumb up. ( )
  branjohb | Aug 15, 2015 |
I enjoy reading biographies, and I also enjoy reading about sports. So, this seemed like perfect book for me. And it was, but for reasons unrelated to football. The reason this is so, is John Unitas.
Author Callahan states that this book is as much about a team, and a time as much as it is a biography about Unitas. He's right. And that team was more than just a collection of individuals, but a team in a sense we don't see much anymore. There were few grandstanders and plenty of players willing to do what was good for the team. It's also the tale of a man, who was at the center of it all.
coverThe story tells of a boy, who grew up poor, but didn't let that daunt him. Hard work, belief in himself, a bit of luck and he succeeded in being one of the greatest quarterbacks in the history of the NFL. He became an icon of not only a team, but an era. The 1950's and 1960's. An era that brought much change and moved the NFL to the dominant sports league we know today. Unitas was a part of, and left behind that change. That was as much a part of the man he was as anything else.
There is a good bit of football action talked about, but an equal amount of space and time is left to focus on his teammates, how they felt about him and who they were as well. It really is a book as much about a team, its time as well as a book about Johnny U.
While no saint, Unitas was a stand up guy. Loved and respected by many who knew him, which is a testament to his skills as not only a quarterback and a leader on the field, but to the man he was the rest of the time. He was a compelling man, and this makes for a compelling story. Which is wonderfully told by Callahan as he covers a lot of ground in a page turning fashion. Hardly a definitive biography, but certainly an entertaining one and one worthy of your time. Whether you are a football fan or not. ( )
  yingko | Feb 15, 2008 |
Every kid has (or ought to have) heroes. For me, Johnny Unitas was one of the first. Unitas first achieved fame as the quarterback for the NFL's Baltimore Colts when I was too young to know football was, helping lead the Colts to the 1958 NFL championship in a game that is still called "The Greatest Game Ever Played." But by the time I was old enough to know what football was, there was no doubt who my favorite player was. Unitas ranked right up there with the astronauts.

That's why I picked up Johnny U: The Life and Times of John Unitas with such anticipation when I saw it. It was about time, I thought, that someone write a Unitas biography. Yet the book, written by award-winning sportswriter Tom Callahan, epitomizes sports biographies and, more important, what I dislike about sports biographies. Perhaps not surprisingly, they tend to be far too heavy on the sports and far too light on the biography.

The book clearly has potential, given the significant number of interviews Callahan conducted (although his recurring reference to himself as "the sportswriter," such as in "Shula told the sportswriter," goes beyond annoying). But in the end the book is far more about the times than the life of Johnny U. Callahan revisits the 1958 championship game play by play, with a more detailed recounting of some of the more significant plays that led to the sudden death victory. He introduces us to plenty of the stars during the time the Colts were amongst the NFL elite. While they talk about Unitas, we learn as much about them and their backgrounds as we do Unitas. And while it's kind of fun to read about Raymond Berry and Gino Marchetti and the tale of John Mackey is sad, what we learn about Unitas tends to be his skills, his attitude, his reserve and his toughness on the football field.

For example, while we meet his mother, brothers and sisters early on and get a fair recounting of Unitas' childhood and college years, the first Mrs. Unitas is mentioned early on and disappears entirely until virtually the end of the book. In fact, it isn't until the final two chapters that we really meet any of the family Unitas started as an adult. Even then, it is almost exclusively his family with his second wife. From his beginning in the NFL until some some of his post-career business failures, we don't really learn much about Unitas other than what he did on the practice field and in the stadiums and, as noted, how his teammates viewed him. Granted, we learn why Unitas wore the black hightops that, along with his crewcut, set him off from virtually all other football players in the 1960s and 1970s. We learn the respect he earned from teammates and opponents for his fairness, toughness, and determination. We learn that when Unitas won a Corvette for being the most valuable player in the 1958 championhip game, he traded it in for a station wagon. This is all consistent with what his fans probably already knew or, if they didn't, could have picked up in one of the sports magazines of the era.

This might be all well and good if a glimpse of how football changed during the Johnny Unitas years is your primary focus. But if you're interested in learning about the man himself, it doesn't cut it. Admittedly, I may be asking too much from a biography that is, after all, about a sports figure. But I wanted to learn not only about Johnny Unitas the football player but the man outside the stadium lights. What did he do in the off-season? What things outside football did he enjoy? How did he and his family cope or attempt to cope with his fame given Baltimore's adoration of its Colts? How did the failure of his first marriage and whatever caused it affect his playing or vice versa? I'm not looking for dirt or gossip. I simply want to know about his life outside the spotlight. None of this information is really here. As a result, the book tends to make Unitas one dimensional, that he was a football player and little or nothing else.

In fairness to Callahan, he admits in the preface that the book isn't just about Unitas. Although Johnny U begins and ends with the title subject, Callhan writes that the book "is as much about a certain time as a single player. It is less about a specific place in the country than a place where the whole country used to be." As such, the book is more a biography of the Baltimore Colts and professional football in general during the Unitas years. And in that respect Callahan succeeds in educating us about how the NFL was different then and the internal dynamics of the Colts. He also does a fine job of exploring various social issues that existed at the time, such as the color line in pro football.

In the end, as a sports biography, the book could make almost any starting lineup. Drop the modifier "sports," though, and Johnny U underperforms.

Originally posted at http://prairieprogressive.com/2006/12/30/book-review-johnny-u-2006/
1 vote PrairieProgressive | Sep 24, 2007 |
Exibindo 4 de 4
sem resenhas | adicionar uma resenha
Você deve entrar para editar os dados de Conhecimento Comum.
Para mais ajuda veja a página de ajuda do Conhecimento Compartilhado.
Título canônico
Título original
Títulos alternativos
Data da publicação original
Pessoas/Personagens
Informação do Conhecimento Comum em inglês. Edite para a localizar na sua língua.
Lugares importantes
Eventos importantes
Filmes relacionados
Premiações
Epígrafe
Dedicatória
Primeiras palavras
Citações
Últimas palavras
Aviso de desambiguação
Editores da Publicação
Autores Resenhistas (normalmente na contracapa do livro)
Idioma original
CDD/MDS canônico

Referências a esta obra em recursos externos.

Wikipédia em inglês (2)

In a time "when men played football for something less than a living and something more than money," John Unitas was the ultimate quarterback. Rejected by Notre Dame, discarded by the Pittsburgh Steelers, he started on a Pennsylvania sandlot making six dollars a game and ended as the most commanding presence in the National Football League, calling the critical plays and completing the crucial passes at the moment his sport came of age. Johnny U is the first authoritative biography of Unitas, based on hundreds of hours of interviews with teammates and opponents, coaches, family and friends. The depth of Tom Callahan's research allows him to present something more than a biography, something approaching an oral history of a bygone sporting era. It was a time when players were paid a pittance and superstars painted houses and tiled floors in the off-season--when ex-soldiers and marines like Gino Marchetti, Art Donovan, and "Big Daddy" Lipscomb fell in behind a special field general in Baltimore. Few took more punishment than Unitas. His refusal to leave the field, even when savagely bloodied by opposing linemen, won his teammates' respect. His insistence on taking the blame for others' mistakes inspired their love. His encyclopedic football mind, in which he'd filed every play the Colts had ever run, was a wonder. In the seminal championship game of 1958, when Unitas led the Colts over the Giants in the NFL's first sudden-death overtime, Sundays changed. John didn't. As one teammate said, "It was one of the best things about him."

Não foram encontradas descrições de bibliotecas.

Descrição do livro
Resumo em haiku

Links rápidos

Capas populares

Avaliação

Média: (4)
0.5
1
1.5
2 1
2.5 1
3 3
3.5 2
4 6
4.5 3
5 6

É você?

Torne-se um autor do LibraryThing.

 

Sobre | Contato | LibraryThing.com | Privacidade/Termos | Ajuda/Perguntas Frequentes | Blog | Loja | APIs | TinyCat | Bibliotecas Históricas | Os primeiros revisores | Conhecimento Comum | 157,692,383 livros! | Barra superior: Sempre visível