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When the legend is too good, print the legend

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by HejiraHenry, Apr 24, 2009.

  1. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    Two pre-draft stories I have read this week – one from Fort Worth and one from Akron – breathlessly repeat the story that Michael Oher of Ole Miss saidhe has not read the book about him, "The Blind Side" by Michael Lewis.

    Except ... Oher told the AP two weeks ago that he has, since the NFL Combine, read the book.
  2. Faithless

    Faithless Member

    Don't we all wish a smokin' hot, loving woman like Leigh Anne Tuohy will take us into her home?

    That's Leigh Anne on the front right.

    <img src=http://media.rd.com/rd/images/rdc/mag0611/big-man-on-campus-03-af.jpg>
  3. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    What, in a nutshell, IS the story? We have it on sort of as background noise as we read, dick around oN SJ, eat dinner, etc. The Queen was asking and I couldn't answer.
  4. EagleMorph

    EagleMorph Member

    Oher was essentially homeless as a 14-15 year old in Memphis. His mom was a crackhead, he didn't have much of an extended family. He had just a few belongings and stayed the night at various friends' houses. He wasn't officially in school - the Memphis school system is in shambles and eventually lost track of him - and certainly wasn't playing football.

    Friend of his gets pushed to Briarcrest Christian School, and friend's dad decides to take Oher along. After various bits of red tape, Oher gets accepted into the school. Tuohy family already helps out other impoverished kids at the school with tuition, meals, clothes, and books and agrees to help out Oher and his friend. Oher essentially moves in with his friend, making the long trek to the school.

    Slowly pulls his grades up, but it's still inconsistent and he's still beyond poor. Tuohy's agree to let him move in and start to take care of him. Oher is classified with a learning disability but eventually begins to make progress on his grades. He plays hoops - which he played regularly before - and steps onto the football field for the first time in high school as a junior.

    He's not great as a pass blocker, but the high school coach - Hugh Freeze - decides to just run the ball behind him and Oher gains lots of attention as a college recruit.

    Eventually ends up at Ole Miss. Some controversy because it's the Tuohy's alma mater and Freeze ends up on Ed Orgeron's staff, but Oher's eligibility is never questioned, and really, his other options didn't make much sense. He didn't like Alabama, North Carolina State didn't feel comfortable, and Orgeron won the one-on-one recruiting battle against Tennessee.

    Still inconsistent until Orgeron gets fired and new staff comes in. Probably a steal at #23.

    Michael Lewis (Moneyball) wrote a book called "The Blind Side" about Oher and the evolution of the left tackle in the NFL. It's a tremendous read, although Oher says his lack of education was trumped up a bit by Lewis.
  5. Twoback

    Twoback Active Member

    Moddy: Read the book. It's fantastic. Definitely worth your time.
  6. TigerVols

    TigerVols Well-Known Member

  7. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    I got the sense the reason the he-didn't-read-the-book thing took on so much traction was, and I'm guessing here, that some reporters at the combine just assumed that maybe he COULDN'T read the book. Which is another matter.

    He rolled a high teens score on the Wonderlic, if I recall correctly.
  8. RickStain

    RickStain Well-Known Member

    Not that I disagree, but prepare for a slobbering love-fest on this family like you wouldn't believe. Lewis is great, but he tends to fall in love with his subjects a little.
  9. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    I thought the book was great, found the evolution of the left tackle stuff to be as interesting as the Oher story. But I was a little disappointed to read at the end of the book that Lewis and Tuohy were childhood friends. Would have been better if it was laid out earlier on.
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