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Glory Road Analysis - Movie Case Study

Autor:   •  December 6, 2015  •  Book/Movie Report  •  1,782 Words (8 Pages)  •  1,242 Views

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COST 3606

MOVIE CASE STUDY

GLORY ROAD

SUBMITTED BY: Levi Demour-Iozzo

        The movie Glory Road is based on the true story of the 1965 Texas Western Minors men’s basketball team. Don Haskins, who is the main character in the movie, coached the team, and led them to the national championship game where they beat the number one ranked team, Kentucky, who was an all white team. This game was and still is considered one of the greatest upsets in sports history, and one of the most important games as well, as Don Haskins started five black players, and only played the seven black players. The reason this game, as well as the entire season, was so significant was because during this time, racism was still a huge problem in the United States, but especially in the south where Texas Western was located. Don Haskins recruited seven black players to the team, which was by far the most in the NCAA at the time, as only a few teams had just one black player on the team. The team experienced a lot of racism throughout their season, from other players on the floor making racial remarks, referees being bias towards white teams, people in restaurants staring and causing fights, and even their hotel rooms getting trashed when they were on the road. The more success the team had, the more prominent the racism was.

Disney used this event to create a sports movie, with a much more important theme and message behind the story. Sport in this film is used to represent unity, and coming together. In the movie, basketball is a chance for the black players to prove all of the racist people wrong, and show they that they can play at a high level. The sport allows them to isolate themselves from all of the negativity, and do something they love for a purpose. The team is lead by head coach Don Haskins, who to me is the main character in the movie. He is the leader of the movement, and represents the heart of the team. Before coaching at Texas Western, he was a women’s high school coach. When he came to Texas Western, no one believed in him either, and just expected him to put a mediocre team on the floor for the season. When he began recruiting black players, people really looked down on him, as people were extremely racist at the time, and believed that black people could not play basketball. In one of the scenes in the movie, one of Coach Haskins’ assistant states “You talk like negros are going to be the future of basketball. Ha! Imagine that.” The irony in this statement emphasizes the hate and disbelief that people in the south had for black people back in 1965. When the players found out he used to coach high school girls, even they did not believe that he was going to help them win. He was an extremely tough coach, but was the only one who really believed in his players, and saw the talent that they had. Through all the hate and racism, coach Haskins always had something positive to say to motivate his players and help make them believe in themselves, even when they thought they were defeated by racism. Coach Haskins was the glue to the team that brought together the white and black players, and made them see that it did not matter what colour their teammates were, but if they played like a team they could win. Bobby Joe Hill, who was the leading scorer on the team, was a player who never really got a chance to show how good he was due to lack of playing time because of his skin colour. When coach Haskins recruited him, he almost did not even bother coming to play because he believed he would do the same thing, make him sit the bench. Coming to Texas Western to play basketball was his second chance to really do what he loved, as it was for all the black players on the team. The difference between Bobby Joe and the rest of the player is that he brought his own unique style of play to the game that at first, coach Haskins did not allow. When the team first started to play, coach only allowed them to play his way, which was fundamental basketball. No stylish moves, no dunking, no flashy passes, just simple effective moves. When this was not working well, Bobby Joe persisted to coach Haskins that they play their own way rather than his way, and when they did, they began their historic winning streak. This represented power for the black players because they finally got to do something their own way rather than always following what they are told to do. This is where again, the sport of basketball really represents a second chance for the black players, and power for them to uplift themselves and achieve their own goals.

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