Rest in Peace, John Wooden

Word has spread quickly through Dodger Stadium that John Wooden has passed away. The entire Dodger organization extends our sincere thoughts to his family and friends, which include several members of the team…Vin Scully, Joe Torre and so many others.

My understanding is that Vin will mention Coach Wooden’s passing at the top of the fourth inning on the broadcast and there are few who can do so with such class. For those who were fortunate enough to meet him, it is surely something they’ll never forget.

Many of our then-young prospects, including tonight’s starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw, Blake DeWitt and Ramon Troncoso had the good fortunate to meet Coach Wooden during a private dinner one night during our Winter Development program on Jan. 11, 2008.

He will be missed by so many but his teachings and wise words of wisdom will carry forward for generations. There are so many great quotes, but here’s a personal favorite:

“It’s amazing how much you can accomplish when no one cares who gets the credit.”

Rest in peace, John Wooden.



    In his beautiful tenor voice, Vin paid tribute to Coach Wooden in his unique way. Who else would so eloquently quote Shakespeare to describe the life of one who touched and influenced so many?

  2. perumike

    Very nice post Josh, and right on spot. I listened to about a 20 minute bio on Bill Handel’s show this morning, and it gave me an even greater respect for John Wooden as a man and husband. This world has lost a great one!

  3. enchantedbeaver

    One of the truely class acts that spanned the generations with his wisdom and inspiration. May God bless you as much as you blessed mankind Coach Wooden.

  4. enchantedbeaver

    Hey Wally! I woke up and there was a ballgame going on!!

    BTW, why can’t any of our pitchers hit?

  5. enchantedbeaver

    These guys couldn’t score if they were in a women’s prison with a fistful of pardons.

  6. enchantedbeaver

    Keep in mind this guy’s 0-7 and they can’t hit him either. Doesn’t bode well when we’re going to be facing the Cards, Sox and Yankees.

  7. jhallwally

    I hear you Beav!!! We’ve got a tough stretch coming up and the offense is going to have to get it going. In his defense, they’ve only scored 15 runs in his 7 defeats.

  8. nedajerk

    That record is misleading because he had some good game and could’ve easy won 3 to 4 games if the Braves could’ve score for him.

  9. nedajerk

    In 10 games that he has pitch 1 game when he gave up 5 runs and 2 games when he gave up 4 runs and the other 7 3 runs or less. He has pitch very well in his last 3 games but no run support for him.

  10. enchantedbeaver

    The fact remains though, he ain’t no Lincecum, Jimenez or Halliday.

    Of course the fact also remains that beyond Kemp and Andre, we ain’t got no hitters either.

  11. enchantedbeaver

    Kersh walked them Shad, but Kuo gave up a double to a light hitting SS with two out. Gotta put that on Kuo.

  12. dodgereric

    Hello everyone.

    I was researching John Wooden quotes to send to the LA Times letters section (which is now no doubt too late to be printed) when I came across this one that you ought to send to Torre, Josh:

    “I’d rather have a lot of talent and a little experience than a lot of experience and a little talent.”

  13. jhallwally

    Kersch was gassed in the 6th. Probably shouldn’t have pitched in the 7th. Oh well, Kuo against right handed batters was .167. Not exactly a bad gamble!!! Most of the time it works. They just hit a duece to match the duece on base with the River Card!!! It happens!!!

  14. nedajerk

    Escobar is a good hitter don’t let the low ba fool you and there no excuse for Kershaw to walk Glaus.

  15. perumike

    Glad to see us win a one run game. Against Atlanta we will probably see lots of games like this. Same against the Yanks.

  16. jhallwally

    Sweet!!! Nice win!!! Has anyone noticed that the Brox bobble-head looks more like Ichiro than Johnny?!!!!

  17. oldbrooklynfan

    Was Scully on the loud speaker or something?
    It would’ve been embarassing if Jon would’ve blown it.

  18. nellyjune

    Wally – LMAO!!!! Now that you say that…… Andre’s really doesn’t look like him either, but Jonathon’s even looks less like him.

  19. dodgereric

    There are going to be many tributes to Coach Wooden in the next few days. Here is the end of one of them:

    “There will be all kinds of personal remembrances from one end of the country to the other, some as simple and as powerful as something written in one of his books and what it has meant to someone.

    But maybe it’s really Nellie, Nellie’s memory and his love for his wife more than anything that explains Wooden’s legacy, or John Bob, as his wife of 53 years called him.

    Wooden lived what he preached, as sound a road map as anyone might want to follow, and while obviously in no hurry to die, he did so at peace with the prospect of even happier days ahead with the woman he loved.

    A few years back, moved by such devotion, one of his former players, Swen Nater, put it in a poem, “Yonder,” which Wooden recited from memory near the end of Scully & Wooden.

    Once I was afraid of dying.

    Terrified of ever-lying.

    Petrified of leaving family, home and friends.

    Thoughts of absence from my dear ones,

    Drew a melancholy tear once.

    And a lonely, dreadful fear of when life ends.

    But those days are long behind me;

    Fear of leaving does not bind me.

    And departure does not host a single care.

    Peace does comfort as I ponder,

    A reunion in the Yonder,

    With my dearest who is waiting for me there.”

    The entire article, written by TJ Simers:,0,5117485.column

  20. nellyjune

    LOL WALLY!!!! I think it’s the not being able to say anything worse than “shut up” during a school day πŸ™‚

  21. enchantedbeaver

    Great poem. I vaguely remember the name Swen Nater. A lot can and should be learned from Wooden and put to use in one’s own life, especially in these trying times we find ourselves in now.

  22. nellyjune

    Well, I don’t think “they” want the Cleaver Family talking to each other. Everytime I am on here with the other three, I get the submission errors. It’s almost an automatic thing at times.

  23. dodgereric

    Swen Nater was the back-up center to Bill Walton. If I remember correctly, he might have been the only back-up center to have never started a college game but was a first-round draft choice in the NBA.

    I’m going to have a part to play in an Eagle Scout Court of Honor Sunday and have taken some of Wooden’s quotes for a part of my speech. Although I don’t believe he was ever a Scout, these quotes are very appropriate.

    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.

    Consider the rights of others before your own feelings, and the feelings of others before your own rights.

    Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.

    If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?

    The main ingredient of stardom is the rest of the team.

    You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.

    Material possessions, winning scores, and great reputations are meaningless in the eyes of the Lord, because He knows what we really are and that is all that matters.

  24. nellyjune

    Dodgereric/Ward Dear – those would be perfect!!

    I have been submission-errored all night. It’s why I gave up posting during the game, and it’s happening again.

  25. nedajerk

    I was watching the ch 11 news again and of course it was a rerun of the 10 pm news and they have this guy also name Jim Joyce and this guy was getting a lot of phone calls that he had to change his number.

  26. nedajerk

    I was watching the ch 11 news again and of course it was a rerun of the 10 pm news and they have this guy also name Jim Joyce and this guy was getting a lot of phone calls that he had to change his number.


    John Wooden may be gone physically but his legacy will live on forever. I had the good fortune of being a student at UCLA during the string of championships and attending games at Pauley and watching the opposing teams mostly just wilt under the pressure. We would have to get to the games early but we were able to watch the JV teams as freshman could not play varsity at the time. The Bruin freshman teams had enough talent to beat a lot of varsity teams but it was a much different time. Today the teams are much better and it would be difficult for anyone to match what Coach Wooden and the Bruins did back then.

    But the great thing about Coach is the relationship he had with his players and his emphasis on life learning that went beyond the game of basketball. Look at the quotes from former players and you see the love and respect they had for him as a teacher and mentor. They seldom mention what happened on the court. Yes, for most of us the championships come to mind when we think of the Wooden era at UCLA. The reality is he was so much more than basketball. Yes, he will be missed but we can all learn something from him now and in the future.

  28. crzblue2

    You were so lucky Ibirken! but we all are so lucky to be able to learn from coach.
    I went to see Ely today at the At&T store. I had to get up early after last night’s game but it was worth it. Well, I got a call at 5am from work and had to fire up the work laptop so afterwards I just headed that way. What a pleasure it was to meet him! He was honored to sign my scorebook! Imagine that! I love Ely!

  29. sparkleplenty_1

    With Philly beating up on the Madres, we have a chance to take over first place tonight – I’m sure excited!! GO DODGERS!!!!

  30. northstateblues


    don’t tell anyone…

    but we’re tied for first at this moment.

    Must be nervous for the Pads right now…

  31. bklyntrolleyblogger

    To All of Los Angeles, May your GIANT among righteous men, rest eternally in peace and with his wife, which is always where he wanted to be. John Wooden’s stature and character cast shadows upon men, even here 3000 miles away in Brooklyn. To L.A. sympathies. To John Wooden…rest well.
    (this was my comments I left on CRZBlue’s page.)
    mike BTB

  32. kpookiemon

    lbirken, I was a student at UCLA, too, during the Walton years. I remember at tip-off the house lights would dim, leaving only the court lights. A few minutes later the opposing coach would call time out, house lights would brighten, and the scoreboard would show something like 22-2. I can NEVER remember Wooden ever being agitated during a game. He would say that if the players hadn’t learned it in practice, there was no use shouting during the game. Oh, and Ned, if he had an issue with a player, he would keep it in-house.

    eric, love that quote!

  33. nellyjune

    Dodgereric – how did the Eagle Scout Ceremony go with your John Wooden quotes? I am sure they were very well received.

  34. truebluewill

    Good outing by Bills! A couple of bad breaks on two of those hits in this inning. Let’s go Troncoso.

  35. trublu4ever

    We should have scored more than 2 runs off todays pitcher. And, yes, Jhall…..UNACCEPTABLE!!!!!!

  36. dodge1612

    why not put in your best reliever when you need him? oh I know torre wait till the ninth inning when you dont have a lead… now thats a strategy… geeze, a monkey could do better

  37. crzblue2

    Hey Jhall! Should have brought my flask! Did even felt like singing take me out to the bullpen. Cute pic on the board of Andre as a kid with a cowboy red hat

  38. truebluewill

    Boy, didn’t see that one coming. Feels like we’ve been run over! Did anyone get the number of that truck?

  39. nellyjune

    Stop this ride!!!! I want to get off!!!! ……………..and to think the ice cream was so close to being ours tonight – CRAP!!!! ………………….and as jhall says…………..TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE!!!!

  40. nellyjune

    Not that I am totally giving up. The Dodgers have done the impossible before, but it’s definitely an uphill climb at the moment.

  41. trublu4ever

    I’m really hoping Haeger goes back on the DL after this game…ailment…inability to pitch!!!!!!

  42. jhallwally

    Hi’Ya Nelly!!! LOL!!! I fear we’re going to have a lot of these moments coming up with Padilla, Haegar, and Sherrill coming back!!! Pathetic!!!!

  43. nellyjune

    I heard rumors today that Haeger was going to take Ely’s place. That would be just criminal. I don’t care about options when it comes to pitchers. The best pitchers need to be here and be here now. Maybe after tonight, that rumor is now a mute point.

  44. nellyjune

    Hi Jhall!!! This game certainly turned from very good to very, very bad and very quickly I might add. Billz was doing a great job too.


    A lot of bad at bats for the boys tonight. By the way, where did you hear that rumor? It would seem odd the Dodgers would send Ely on a promo appearance today with a start tomorrow if they intended to send him down.

  46. jhallwally

    Haegar taking Ely’s spot is pure insanity!!! Hard to believe!!! I guess money issues outweigh performance.

  47. nellyjune

    That is all it was lbirken was a rumor at the time, and I haven’t looked for anything to substantiate it. So, I am assuming it is just that………………..a rumor.

  48. jhallwally

    I think Ely has cemented his spot in the rotation. That is just my opinion and seeing as Padilla will be coming back and we’re paying him more, he will get a longer leash!!!

  49. jhallwally

    Padilla and Haegar dueling it out for the 5 spot. Wow, kids, send in those cereal box tops now to win tickets to those games!!!

  50. kpookiemon

    Crummy game…still can’t stop pondering Coach. Wonder if Frank and Jamie ever read his books, especially the character parts.

  51. nellyjune

    Jhall – So, in all likelihood Padilla should take Monesterios’ spot, but then were does he go………………somebody from the bullpen would have to go……………….another phantom DL injury?

  52. nellyjune

    Jhall – So, in all likelihood Padilla should take Monesterios’ spot, but then were does he go………………somebody from the bullpen would have to go……………….another phantom DL injury?

  53. nellyjune

    Well, tomorrow is a Sunday/day game. Who gets the day off tomorrow Joe? …………..against Hudson of all pitchers too.

  54. jhallwally

    Well unfortunately, in a 162 game punch bowl, you will find an occaisional t*rd!!!! Kemp has been pathetic for about a month now!!! And Manny is toast!!! Geez!!!

  55. crzblue2

    Good Sunday ITD!
    Ely on the mound today! Did I tell you all that I LOVE ELY!
    Wonderful column by T.J. Simers about coach. He hit it out of the park. And there are also letters about John Wooden. Eric, you should have sent yours! Just finished crying reading the Simers column and the letters. Plaschke’s column yesterday was also good. I was reading the sport section while I waited for Ely at the AT&T store.
    have a nice day everyone. Got to get ready for the game now. I need more hours in a day!

  56. dodgereric

    Good morning, ITD!!

    Junie, the Eagle Court of Honor is today. I’ll let you know if they booed me or not.

    Emma, I did send one.,0,5067084,full.story

    I don’t think they’ll send out Monestarios when Padilla and/or Sherrill are ready to come back. I’m pretty sure that if he’s not on the ML roster all season, he goes back to the Phillies doesn’t he? I’m hoping against hope for a little common sense for a change and that we’ll see the last of Haeger the Horrible first, then Justin (the HBP King) Miller.

    And if Ely goes back to keep Haeger or even Monestarios, it will be proof positive that winning comes second now for this once very proud organization. I’m still trying to figure out why we got rid of a 4-tool kid and insist on running out a 1-tool geezer who can’t even figure out how to use that 1 tool anymore.

    Sell the team McCourt. And get outta town.

    In that order.

    We deserve so much better than you.

    We are not alone.

  57. kpookiemon

    I think John Wooden’s passing leaves a huge hole in our hearts because so few people, let alone sports figures…or sports owners, possess a shred of Wooden’s selflessness or wisdom.

  58. enchantedbeaver

    The wheels on the bus go round and round
    Round and round
    Round and round
    The wheels on the bus go round and round
    AND THEN THEY F**KING COME OFF THE BUS (in my best Sam Kinison voice.)

    Hey Ned, here’s a tip from your uncle Enchanted – Haeger’s “cured” and he still sucks. GET RID OF HIM. Manny sucks and obviously doesn’t want to be in L.A. GET RID OF HIM. Here’s another tip – best find yourself a 2Bman that actually can hit like a major league 2Bman, you know 15-25 HR a year. If he can’t, he better damn well field like Hudson or he’s worthless. GET RID OF HIM. Joe’s an idiot. GET RID

  59. kpookiemon

    The team seems stagnant, flailing for an identity. The Dodgers PVL triumvirate, Manny-Furcal-Blake, seems to be constantly dinged and in search of a batting stroke once each returns. That leaves the 5-headed kid MartinLoneyKempEthierDeWitt to carry the weight. Ethier is obviously the only member remotely representing a consistent threat….hence, the team better be built on pitching. Ummmmmmmmmmmmm…no. So, live by the PVL, die by the PVL. Joe knows he’s in it for the short haul so this roster reflects his blueprint. And while this methodology might best benefit his legacy, it does nothing for the franchise or it’s future. Frank? Are you even awake?

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