Outside of Business Books for a Day – My Vote for the Best


With the flurry of collegiate bowl games and the onset of professional football playoffs, my attention today turns away from business to sports.

Sports has long been a popular arena for writers, including from those who cover the various events, as well as those who coach and play it.  Sports has also been an increasingly popular source for business analogies – “you hit a home run,’ “that presentation was a hole-in-one,” “it was a slam-dunk in there today,” and so forth.

If you were to ask me what my all-time favorite sports book is, it would not take very long to get you an answer.   My choice is Instant Replay:  The  Green Bay Diary of Jerry Kramer (Doubleday, 1968).  In that book, the former offensive guard for the Packers revealed in-depth and behind-the-scenes information about life with legendary coach Vince Lombardi.  Of interest to Dallas Cowboys fans is the revelation that he believed he may have been offsides on the famous goal-line plunge by quarterback Bart Starr that gave the Packers a last-minute victory in the famed 1967 Ice Bowl.  How we have wished that they could have been pushed back five yards!

The book was republished in 2006, and that edition is still available on Amazon.com.   But, for me, I read the book as a teenager, and I remember many parts of it vividly.

One other note about this book:  like many works that athletes authored, this one was “as told to,” and the target was Dick Schapp.   He was one of the great sports writers and interviewers of modern times.  Even the unpredictable and volatile basketball coaching legend Bobby Knight admired him.  Sports fans throughout the the world miss him. 

That’s my vote.  What about you?

2 thoughts on “Outside of Business Books for a Day – My Vote for the Best

  1. kjkrayer Post author

    Great! These are good ones also.

    Another one that really changed my perspective was called MEN AT WORK by George Will. It showed that baseball managers, coaches, and players are not the “boys of summer,” but that they examine complex variables and build skills every day – spending far more time doing so than the above-average business manager or executive. It was quite a book!

  2. Doug Caldwell

    My favorite story from the book is being on-time. Kramer relates getting on the team bus 20 minutes before schedule departure and found he was the last one on. Later asking a veteran about the schedule, he was told there was being on-time or being on Vince Lombardi time


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