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Any Given Monday

by Don Yaeger James R Andrews

From tennis elbow to severe trauma, Dr. James Andrews has treated countless sports injuries during his unparalleled medical career. An orthopedic surgeon, well known for performing Tommy John surgeries, and a consultant to some of the fiercest teams in college and professional sports, Dr. Andrews is the father of modern sports medicine and one of the most influential figures in the world of athletics. In Any Given Monday, he distills his practical wisdom and professional advice to combat a growing epidemic of injury among sports' most vulnerable population: its young athletes. Every year more than 3.5 million children will require medical treatment for sports-related injuries, the majority of which are avoidable through proper training and awareness. Any Given Monday is Dr. Andrews's sport-by-sport guide to injury prevention and treatment, written specifically for the parents, grandparents, and coaches of young athletes. From identifying eating disorders to preventing career-ending ACL tears and concussions, Any Given Monday is a compendium of practical advice for every major sport, including football, gymnastics, judo, basketball, tennis, baseball, cheerleading, wrestling, and more. This invaluable guide reveals how young athletes can maximize their talent and maintain a lifetime of health both on the field and off.

Devoted: The Story of a Father's Love for His Son

by Don Yaeger Don Hoyt

The remarkable story of a father's devotion to his wheelchair-bound son and how their bond inspired millions of people worldwide. Born a spastic quadraplegic, Rick Hoyt was written off by numerous doctors. They advised his parents, Dick and Judy, to put their firstborn son in an institution. But Rick's parents refused. Determined to give their son every opportunity that "normal" kids had, they made sure to include Rick in everything they did, especially with their other two sons, Rob and Russ. But home was one thing, the world at large, another. Repeatedly rebuffed by school administrators who resisted their attempts to enroll Rick in school, Rick's mother worked tirelessly to help pass a landmark bill, Chapter 766, the first special-education reform law in the country. As a result, Rick and other physically disabled kids were able to attend public school in Massachusetts. But how would Rick communicate when he couldn't talk? To overcome this daunting obstacle, Dick and Judy worked with Dr. William Crochetiere, then chairman of the engineering department at Tufts University, and several enterprising graduate students, including Rick Foulds, to create the Tufts Interactive Communication device (TCI). In the Hoyt household, it became known as the "Hope machine," as it enabled Rick to create sentences by pressing his head against a metal bar. For the first time ever, Rick was able to communicate. Then one day Rick asked his dad to enter a charity race, but there was a twist. Rick wanted to run too. Dick had never run a race before, but more challenging still, he would have to push his son's wheelchair at the same time. But once again, the Hoyts were determined to overcome whatever obstacle was put in their way. Now, over one thousand races later, including numerous marathons and triathlons, Dick Hoyt continues to push Rick's wheelchair. Affectionately known worldwide as Team Hoyt, they are as devoted as ever, continuing to inspire millions and embodying their trademark motto of "Yes, you can. "

George Washington's Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved The American Revolution

by Brian Kilmeade Don Yaeger

"As a Long Islander endlessly fascinated by events that happened in a place I call home, I hope with this book to give the secret six the credit they didn't get in life. The Culper spies represent all the patriotic Americans who give so much for their country but, because of the nature of their work, will not or cannot take a bow or even talk about their missions. "--Brian Kilmeade When General George Washington beat a hasty retreat from New York City in August 1776, many thought the American Revolution might soon be over. Instead, Washington rallied--thanks in large part to a little-known, top-secret group called the Culper Spy Ring. Washington realized that he couldn't beat the British with military might, so he recruited a sophisticated and deeply secretive intelligence network to infiltrate New York. So carefully guarded were the members' identities that one spy's name was not uncovered until the twentieth century, and one remains unknown today. But by now, historians have discovered enough information about the ring's activities to piece together evidence that these six individuals turned the tide of the war. Drawing on extensive research, Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger have painted compelling portraits of George Washington's secret six: Robert Townsend, the reserved Quaker merchant and reporter who headed the Culper Ring, keeping his identity secret even from Washington; Austin Roe, the tavern keeper who risked his employment and his life in order to protect the mission; Caleb Brewster, the brash young longshoreman who loved baiting the British and agreed to ferry messages between Connecticut and New York; Abraham Woodhull, the curmudgeonly (and surprisingly nervous) Long Island bachelor with business and family excuses for traveling to Manhattan; James Rivington, the owner of a posh coffeehouse and print shop where high-ranking British officers gossiped about secret operations; Agent 355, a woman whose identity remains unknown but who seems to have used her wit and charm to coax officers to share vital secrets. In" George Washington's Secret Six," Townsend and his fellow spies finally receive their due, taking their place among the pantheon of heroes of the American Revolution.

Greatness: The 16 Characteristics of True Champions

by Don Yaeger

GREATNESS is a motivational book whose target audience is found in business and self-help. It is a life book, aimed at inspiring others to achieve their personal and professional best. Opening with an in-depth discussion of the nature of Greatness--what it is, what it is not, and why it is worth pursing--each subsequent chapter of the book consists of a detailed story illustrating one aspect of Greatness with examples from the sports greats that Don has interviewed over the years. This will be followed by a discussion and other related examples. There are also practical tips and plans for assisting the reader in implementing new habits, routines, practices, and philosophies of Greatness into his or her daily life. As each characteristic is outlined, the reader is challenged to look for areas in his or her professional and personal lives that can be improved by embracing these lessons. As Don often says during his speeches, "Though these characteristics are culled from some of the greatest winners in sports, not a single one requires you to be able to touch your toes! These iconic figures in sports have provided a classroom for us to learn about their pursuit of Greatness. You don't have to be good at sports - heck, you don't even have to like sports - to benefit from their lessons." It is the strong belief of those who Don has talked to over the years that greatness is available to all of us. Not in the same way or on the same field, mind you. But we all have the capacity to achieve greatness if we'll give the same dedication to these characteristics as do the winners presented and interviewed in GREATNESS.

I Beat The Odds: From Homelessness, To The Blind Side And Beyond

by Don Yaeger Michael Oher

The football star made famous in the hit film The Blind Sidereflects on how far he has come from the circumstances of his youth. Michael Oher is the young man at the center of the true story depicted in The Blind Sidemovie (and book) that swept up awards and accolades. Though the odds were heavily stacked against him, Michael had a burning desire deep within his soul to break out of the Memphis inner-city ghetto and into a world of opportunity. While many people are now familiar with Oher's amazing journey, this is the first time he shares his account of his story in his own words, revealing his thoughts and feelings with details that only he knows, and offering his point of view on how anyone can achieve a better life. Looking back on how he went from being a homeless child in Memphis to playing in the NFL, Michael talks about the goals he had for himself in order to break out of the cycle of poverty, addiction, and hopelessness that trapped his family for so long. He recounts poignant stories growing up in the projects and running from child services and foster care over and over again in search of some familiarity. Eventually he grasped onto football as his ticket out of the madness and worked hard to make his dream into a reality. But Oher also knew he would not be successful alone. With his adoptive family, the Touhys, and other influential people in mind, he describes the absolute necessity of seeking out positive role models and good friends who share the same values to achieve one's dreams. Sharing untold stories of heartache, determination, courage, and love, I Beat the Odds is an incredibly rousing tale of one young man's quest to achieve the American dream.

It's Not About the Truth: The Untold Story of the Duke Lacrosse Case and the Lives It Shattered

by Don Yaeger Mike Pressler

Mike Pressler walked into the bottom-floor meeting room of the Murray Building and, as he had done hundreds of times over a sixteen-year career at Duke University, prepared to address his men's lacrosse team. Forty-six players sat in theater-style chairs, all eyes riveted forward. It was 4:35 P.M. on Wednesday, April 5, 2006. The program's darkest hour had arrived in an unexpected and explosive announcement. Pressler, a three-time ACC Coach of the Year, informed his team that its season was canceled and he had "resigned," effective immediately. While his words reverberated off the walls, hysteria erupted. Players cried, confused over a course of events that had spun wildly out of control. What began as an off-campus team party with two hired strippers had accelerated into a rape investigation -- one that exposed prosecutorial misconduct, shoddy police work, an administration's rush to judgment, and the media's disregard for the facts -- dividing both a prestigious university and the city of Durham. Wiping away tears, Pressler demonstrated the steely resolve that helped him win more than two hundred games. For the next thirty minutes, Pressler put his personal situation aside and encouraged his players to stick together. He also made a bold promise: "One day, we will get a chance to tell the world the truth. One day." This is that day. Pressler, who has not done an interview since the saga began, has handed his private diary from those three weeks to New York Times bestselling author Don Yaeger, exposing vivid details, including the day Pressler was fired, when the coach asked Athletic Director Joe Alleva why the school "wasn't willing to wait for the truth" to come out. "It's not about the truth anymore," Alleva said to the coach in a signature moment that said it all. In addition to Pressler, Yaeger interviewed more than seventy-five key figures intimately involved in the case. The result is a tale that defies logic. "It is tough to be one of fifty people who believed a story when fifty million people believed something else," Pressler said. "This wasn't about the truth to many of the others involved. My story is all about the truth."

Never Die Easy

by Don Yaeger Walter Payton

"Never die easy. Why run out of bounds and die easy? Make that linebacker pay. It carries into all facets of your life. It's okay to lose, to die, but don't die without trying, without giving it your best." His legacy is towering. Walter Payton--the man they called Sweetness, for the way he ran--remains the most prolific running back in the history of the National Football League, the star of the Chicago Bears' only Super Bowl Championship, eleven times voted the most popular sports figure in Chicago's history. Off the field, he was a devoted father whose charitable foundation benefited tens of thousands of children each year, and who--faced with terminal liver disease--refused to use his celebrity to gain a preferential position for organ donation. Walter Payton was not just a football hero; he was America's hero. Never Die Easy is Walter Payton's autobiography, told from the heart. Growing up poor in Mississippi, he took up football to get girls' attention, and went on to become a Black College All-American at tiny Jackson State (during which time he was also a finalist in a Soul Train dance contest). Drafted by the Bears in 1975, he predicted that he would last only five years but went on to play thirteen extraordinary seasons, a career earning him regular acknowledgment as one of the greatest players in the history of professional football. And when his playing days were over, he approached business and charity endeavors with the same determination and success he had brought to the football field, always putting first his devotion to friends and family. His ultimate battle with illness truly proved him the champion he always had been and prompted a staggering outpouring of love and support from hundreds of thousands of friends and admirers. Written with veteran journalist and author Don Yaeger in the last weeks of Walter Payton's life, Never Die Easy presents Walter's singular voice--warm, plainspoken, funny, self-aware--along with the voices of the friends, family, teammates, and business associates who knew him best at all stages of his life, including his wife, Connie, and their children, Brittney and Jarrett; his teammate and friend Matt Suhey; former Bears head coach Mike Ditka; and many, many others. Walter made Don Yaeger promise that his book would be "inspirational and leave people with some kind of lesson . . . and make sure you spell all the words right." Never Die Easy keeps all those promises.

Never Give Up on Your Dream: My Journey

by Don Yaeger Warren Moon

Inducted in 2006, Warren Moon is the only African-American quarterback in the NFL Hall of Fame. His path to success was neither easy nor assured. As a seven-year-old growing up in Los Angeles, he lost his father to alcoholism and helped his single mom raise six sisters. Playing football as a kid, coaches questioned whether, because he was black, he had the smarts to play quarterback. Repeatedly asked to switch to another position, Moon refused, knowing that he had both the ability and the intelligence. In college, he played at the University of Washington, beating the Michigan Wolverines in the Rose Bowl. Undrafted by the NFL, he went to Canada and played for the Edmonton Eskimos, leading his team to five consecutive championships. In 1984, he signed with the Houston Oilers and played for the Oilers, Seattle Seahawks, Minnesota Vikings, and Kansas City Chiefs over his 17-year career. This is the triumphant story of how Warren Moon overcame all obstacles to become one of the Top 5 quarterbacks of all time.

Pros and Cons: The Criminals Who Play in the NFL

by Don Yaeger Jeff Benedict

Discloses the names of the convicted criminals in the NFL, the stunning severity of their crimes, & why they're still playing.

Running for My Life: My Journey in the Game of Football and Beyond

by Warrick Dunn Don Yaeger

Warrick Dunn was only eighteen when his mother, a Baton Rouge police officer, was shot and killed. Yet somehow he managed to enroll at Florida State University and help his team to a national championship during his freshman year--while also caring for his five brothers and sisters. Despite his modest size, Dunn went on to a storied NFL career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Atlanta Falcons, becoming one of only twenty-three running backs in NFL history to exceed the 10,000-yard career rushing mark. Off the field, he created the Warrick Dunn Foundation and its Homes for the Holidays program, helping single parents achieve first-time home ownership. But in his drive to help others, the one person Dunn neglected was himself, as the pain of his mother's loss led to a spiraling depression that went untreated for years. Running for My Life details Dunn's struggle to confront his past and face the grief that consumed him for far too long. Thought-provoking and uplifting, it is the story of an exceptional athlete's secret torment and inspiring courage.

Sole Influence: Basketball, Corporate Greed, and the Corruption of America's Youth

by Don Yaeger Dan Wetzel

Explosive and controversial, this exposé uncovers the exploitation of college, high school, and even junior high basketball players by the billion-dollar athletic shoe companies competing for national endorsements.

Starting and Closing: Perseverance, Faith and One More Year

by Don Yaeger John Smoltz

I wasn't afraid to fail. It's really as simple as that. As a seven-year-old kid pitching a ball against a brick wall, John Smoltz decided to be a professional baseball player when he grew up. And from that simple decision until his last season on the mound in the major leagues, it was his faith, work ethic, and love for the game--even more than God-given talent--that propelled him through challenges that would have ruined other athletes. Starting and Closing chronicles John Smoltz's final season in a major league uniform, capping a legendary career that included fourteen years as part of one of the most dominant starting rotations in baseball, a Cy Young Award, and a World Series title-all while battling and overcoming "career-ending" injuries. At age forty-one, Smoltz was making yet another unlikely comeback from his fifth surgery. Recounting the story of a season that tested his perseverance and deepened his faith, Smoltz flashes back to watershed moments in the skeptic-defying journey from being one of the best starting pitchers of all time, to closer, to starter again. One of the most intelligent, talented, and passionate players in the game, Smoltz delivers insights into modern major league baseball, its place in popular culture, and the value of competition. He writes with unflinching honesty about becoming a true Christian and finding in his beliefs the peace and strength to stay focused-through postseason triumphs and defeats, upheavals in his personal life, and the sting of being sent to the bullpen. What emerges is an inspirational story of spiritual growth and family values, from a man who believed not just in himself but in God's plan for him--and one more year.

Tarnished Heisman: Did Reggie Bush Turn His Final College Season into a Six-figure Job?

by Don Yaeger

"In order that there will be no misunderstanding regarding the eligibility of a candidate, the recipient of the award must be a bona fide student of an accredited university. The recipient must be in compliance with the bylaws defining an NCAA student." -- From the ballot for the Heisman Trophy December 10, 2005: Amid a roaring ovation and media crush, with his family standing proudly by his side, Reginald Alfred Bush is named the year's Heisman Trophy winner. With his honest demeanor, effervescent smile and, of course, stunning talent displayed on the fields of the University of Southern California, Reggie Bush is, on that celebratory night, the portrait of a great American sportsman, and the pinnacle of everything the NCAA espouses in its athletes. What America didn't know about the acclaimed college star was that, in direct violation of NCAA policies, Bush and his family had allegedly taken hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and gifts long before he ever laid his hands on the Heisman. The rumors first surfaced one week before the 2006 NFL draft: allegations of improper benefits that transformed Bush's final year at USC into a financial windfall. The resulting scandal from such charges could mark one of the darkest chapters in college football history. Now, drawn together for the first time in Tarnished Heisman, the facts are laid bare. Don Yaeger, a former Sports Illustrated investigative reporter who documented the Duke University lacrosse case in the shattering New York Times bestseller It's Not About the Truth, reveals the heated controversy behind Bush's high-flying rise before turning pro for the New Orleans Saints, going back to his first taste of fame, when Bush landed in the pages of Sports Illustrated and all eyes were watching to see what was next for the USC sophomore. What few eyes saw, however, were the ties between Bush and two San Diego men, cofounders of a fledgling sports agency, who claim to have paid Bush and his family in cash and gifts to ensure his endorsement -- benefits including a vintage car, lavish trips, and an upscale home where Bush's family lived rent-free. Don Yaeger exposes the NCAA-prohibited activity in which Bush allegedly engaged, and also shows how USC and its coaching staff appeared to have turned a blind eye to the increasingly luxurious lifestyle of their star athlete and his family. With the explosive information revealed in Tarnished Heisman, Bush stands to be ruled ineligible -- a decision that could cost his alma mater the 2004 national championship title, force the forfeit of every game Bush played in after losing his eligibility, and potentially strip Reggie Bush of the shining prize of his college career: the Heisman Trophy.

Turning of The Tide: How One Game Changed The South

by Don Yaeger Sam Cunningham John Papadakis

The first integrated football game in Alabama was played on Crimson soil in September 1970, and the two teams that met represented two distinct faces of college football: legendary Alabama coach Bear Bryant's Tide was the all-white national powerhouse in the SEC; and the USC Trojans, coached by John McKay, featured an all-black starting backfield that reflected the social changes that were sweeping the nation. Bestselling author Don Yaeger, teamed with USC fullback Sam Cunningham and defensive captain John Papadakis, tells for the first time the complete story of what transpired during this historic game.

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