March 8, 2021
Hoosier Hysteria Reading List

Looking to brush up on your Hoosier basketball history ahead of the NCAA tournament that will be hosted this month in Indianapolis? This reading list will help you tap into the Hoosier hysteria.

It’s no secret that Indiana loves basketballLooking to brush up on your Hoosier basketball history ahead of the NCAA tournament that will be hosted this month in IndianapolisTap into the Hoosier hysteria by checking out the following titles written by Indiana authors: 

Attucks!: Oscar Robertson and the Basketball Team That Awakened a City by Phillip Hoose 
Although it’s technically a book geared toward young adult readers, this book is suited for adults as well. Attucks! tells the true story of the all-Black Crispus Attucks High School basketball team that broke the color barrier in segregated 1950s Indiana.    

Butler’s Big Dance: The Team, the Tournament, and Basketball Fever by Susan Neville 
This book details the events surrounding the Butler Bulldogs’ 2010 Championship basketball game against Duke University. While the team did not ultimately win the tournament, this compelling account of their story showcases the small but mighty team in their quest for victory. 

Historic Hoosier Gyms: Discovering Bygone Basketball Landmarks by Kyle Neddenriep 
From Bedford to Versailles, Indiana is full of historic gyms and basketball stadiums. In this book, author Kyle Neddenriep made it his quest to document them all, so he grabbed his Indiana state atlas and hopped in his car to collect their stories.  

Hoosiers: The Fabulous Basketball Life of Indiana by Phillip Hoose 
This book, which is in its third edition, gives a broad overview of Indiana’s relationship with basketball. With profiles of famous Hoosier players and coaches as well as notable stories from communities throughout the state, this book is essential for anyone looking to understand our state’s sporting history. 

Indiana’s Sporting Life by Ray Boomhower 
While not exclusively focused on basketball, Ray Boomhower’s collection detailing Indiana’s sporting life exhibits the wide spectrum of stories about Hoosiers’ athletic pursuits. Drawing together articles from the Indiana Historical Society’s Traces magazine, the book features several basketball-focused stories.  

Larry Bird: An Indiana Legend by Indianapolis Star News 
All-time basketball great Larry Bird is one of our state’s athletic claims to fame. This book by the Indianapolis Star chronicles Bird’s long and varied career on the court—as rookie, MVP, coach and champion. 

The Greatest Basketball Story Ever Told by Greg L. Guffey 
It’s one of our state’s bestknown stories, made famous by the beloved Hoosiers film, but this account of the 1954 Milan Indians rise to victory tells the true story behind the screen, packed with action and detail about the team’s progress throughout the season.  

The Making of Hoosiers: How a Small Movie from the Heartland Became One of America’s Favorite Films by Gayle Johnson 
Now in its second edition, Gayle Johnson’s book tells the story behind the making of the renowned film Hoosiers. From casting to filming to production to premieres, this book is for any lover of the classic movie that is looking to take a behind-the-scenes look.  

The Milan Miracle: The Town that Hoosiers Left Behind by Bill Riley 
Firmly secure in our state’s mythology is the story of the 1954 Milan Indians, but what happened to the little town in the decades since their inspirational victory, made famous by Hoosiers? In this book, Bill Riley gets the know the community and the ways it has been shaped by the past.  

We Will Rise: A True Story of Tragedy and Resurrection in the American Heartland by Steve Beaven 
In this book, Evansville native Steve Beaven tells the story of the plane crash that killed the players and coach of the University of Evansville’s Purple Aces basketball team in the 1970s—at a time when the team was consistently winning Division II national championships. Both a tribute to the players and the town, this book considers how a community pulled together in the wake of heartache and tragedy. 

Posted In: Books, Miscellaneous

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