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7:00 PM

Remembering Coach John Wooden

Jeff Fellenzer, Partner, Skybox Sports & Entertainment, LLC; USC Professor of Sports, Business, Media (Moderator)
Andy Hill, Motivational Speaker and Author; UCLA Basketball Letterman, 3-Year NCAA Champion; Former President of CBS Productions
Kenny Booker, Realtor, Coldwell Banker, UCLA Basketball Letterman, 2-Year NCAA Champion

In partnership with the Ukleja Center for Ethical Leadership, home of the "John Wooden Ethics in Leadership Award," and two weeks after what would have been the legendary John Wooden's 100th birthday, the Notable Speaker Series presents: A panel discussion of the man honored last year as the greatest coach in sports history, the profound impact of his teachings, including his world-famous Pyramid of Success, his enduring legacy, and his influence on three people who knew him well.

Jeff Fellenzer will moderate the conversation with two of Coach Wooden's former players, Andy Hill and Long Beach Poly's Kenny Booker. Guests will be encouraged to share their own memories of the man they called "Coach" during a Q-and-A session following the panel discussion.  

John Wooden
Coach John Wooden

John Wooden was a fabulous player before becoming the most successful coach in college basketball history. He enjoyed an All-State career at Martinsville High School, and at Purdue University was called the "Indiana Rubber Man" for his suicidal dives on the court. An excellent play maker and aggressive defender, Wooden was a three-time Helms Athletic Foundation All-America and named College Player of the Year in 1932, the year he and fellow Hall of Famer Charles "Stretch" Murphy led Purdue to the national championship. Wooden, who cites Ward Lambert, his Purdue coach, as being his greatest coaching influence, enjoyed a brief but successful semi-pro career before turning his complete attention to coaching.

The John Wooden-coached UCLA teams scaled unprecedented heights that no future organization in any sport is likely to approach. Under the masterful guidance of Wooden, the Bruins set all-time records with four perfect 30-0 seasons, 88 consecutive victories, 38 straight NCAA tournament victories, 20 PAC 10 championships, and 10 national championships, including seven in a row.

Wooden first learned about basketball when he was eight years old in 1918, 27 years after the invention of basketball. With a pair of his mother's hose stuffed with rags as a ball, young John would shoot at a tomato basket his father had nailed to a wall in their barn. From this humble beginning, Wooden would later become a collegiate hero at Purdue University.

The 1932 College Player of the Year, Wooden studied the game intensely under Hall of Fame coach Ward "Piggy" Lambert. As a matter of course, John Wooden was always learning and looking for ways to become the best. After graduation, Wooden pursued a career in coaching. He spent two years at Dayton (KY) High School and nine years at South Bend (IN) Central High School, compiling a 218-42 record. Wooden then coached at Indiana State University, where he recorded a two-year 44-15 mark. Wooden's big break came in 1948, when he accepted the head coaching position at UCLA. Although he would not win his first national title until 15 years later, Wooden began laying the groundwork for what would become the dynasty of all dynasties. He believed in lengthy practices for conditioning and endless drills to perfect fundamental skills.

Considered one of the finest teachers the game has ever seen, Wooden's approach rested on the idea that basketball is a game of threes: forward, guard, center; shoot, drive, pass; ball, you, man; conditioning, skill, teamwork. The latter was taught by coach Lambert at Purdue and forms the three blocks at the core of Wooden's own Pyramid of Success. The Pyramid is a well-known by-product of the Wooden coaching era. The principles outlined in it form the basis of Wooden's outlook on life and explain much of his success on and off the court. His ability to instill these principles upon his players made Wooden a master of developing talent. His premier players included All-Americans Walt Hazzard, Gail Goodrich, Lew Alcindor, Lucius Allen, Mike Warren, Sidney Wicks, Curtis Rowe, Henry Bibby, Bill Walton, Keith Wilkes, Richard Washington and Dave Meyers.

In a highlight-filled career, Wooden's coaching genius was often challenged. One such classic game was played on Jan. 20, 1968. Wooden's number-one-ranked Bruins, led by Alcindor, lost 71-69 to second-ranked University of Houston, led by Hall of Famer Elvin Hayes. The first-ever televised collegiate game was a showcase for Wooden and college basketball. It was played before 52,693 raucous fans at the Houston Astrodome. Interestingly, on its way to the 1968 NCAA title, UCLA would avenge its loss to Houston in tournament action. John Wooden, a six-time Coach of the Year, dedicated his life to basketball. His perseverance and endurance was rewarded, as he is one of only two people enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach.

Jeff Fellenzer
Jeff Fellenzer
Partner, Skybox Sports & Entertainment, LLC; USC Professor of Sports, Business, Media (Moderator)

Jeff Fellenzer is an adjunct professor at USC's Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, where he teaches "Sports, Business and Media" each spring semester. The class typically attracts close to 200 students, and includes lively discussions with a variety of prominent sports newsmakers, such as: John Wooden, Jerry West, Al Michaels, Keyshawn Johnson, Ned Colletti, Jeanie Buss, Jamaal Wilkes and movie director Ron Shelton. Prior to his current teaching assignment, Fellenzer taught an upper-division writing course, “Sports Reporting,” at the Annenberg School.

Fellenzer is one of the founding partners of Skybox Sports & Entertainment, LLC, a full-service digital marketing company focused on brand building through social media, which launched in summer 2010.

Fellenzer was the creator and president of the Pete Newell Challenge, a college basketball doubleheader held annually in the Bay Area from 1997 to 2006 that honored the late and legendary Hall of Fame coach and teacher. The Pete Newell Challenge still holds the record for the largest crowd ever to see a college basketball game in the state of California. On Dec. 21, 2000, a sellout crowd of 19,804 at The Arena in Oakland watched No. 3-ranked Stanford defeat No. 1-ranked Duke, 84-83.

Three years ago, Fellenzer was selected to be a voter for the Heisman Trophy, one of only 43 people in California and 925 across the country who vote for college football’s most prestigious award.

Fellenzer hosted his own hourlong sports TV interview show, "One on One," for Charter Communications in Long Beach from 2004-07. Among his guests were Tommy Lasorda, Pete Carroll, Scott Boras, Dan Guerrero, Jim Lampley, Fred Claire and World War II hero and 1936 Olympian Louis Zamperini.

Holder of undergraduate and graduate degrees from the USC School of Journalism, Fellenzer is also faculty adviser for the USC Sports Business Assn. He is a frequent panelist and moderator for sports business conferences and forums, having hosted panels at USC, UCLA and UC Irvine. He has served as an adviser and mentor for hundreds of students interested in sports business and sports journalism careers.

Fellenzer is on the selection committee for the Allan Malamud Scholarship in sports journalism at USC, and serves as a judge for the Jim Murray Memorial Foundation   Scholars competition. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Long Beach Education Foundation, and is the director and founder of the Spirit of Sue Fund, which offers financial assistance for arts-related programs in the Long Beach Unified School District. He also volunteers for the Southern California Special Olympics.

Fellenzer worked as an editor and writer for the Los Angeles Times for almost nine years, before leaving to create the Pete Newell Challenge and launch Innovative Sports Management. He has written extensively on college and high school recruiting, both locally and nationally, and has been a regular sports talk-radio guest.

Fellenzer is a member of the Screen Actors Guild, having appeared in two sports-related films: “Blue Chips” (1993) and “Cobb” (1994). He attended Long Beach Wilson High School and Long Beach City College, and now lives in Pacific Palisades.

Andy Hill
Andy Hill
Motivational Speaker and Author; UCLA Basketball Letterman, 3-Year NCAA Champion; Former President of CBS Productions

Andy Hill is a motivational speaker and author whose unique success as president of two media companies, CBS Productions and Channel One Network, was based on lessons he learned from Coach John Wooden as a member of three N.C.A.A. basketball teams at UCLA.

January 1991 to April 1996, Hill served as President of CBS Productions in charge of development and production for all CBS-owned entertainment programming.  Hill was responsible for some of the decade’s most successful primetime programming including TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL, DR. QUINN: MEDICINE WOMAN, WALKER TEXAS RANGER, CAROLINE IN THE CITY, DAVE’S WORLD, and RESCUE 911.

 In 1997, Hill was named President of Programming for the Channel One Network, producing award-winning news programming for 8 million American teens.

Left Channel One in July, 2000, to write “BE QUICK-BUT DON’T HURRY!: Finding Success in the Teachings of a Lifetime”.

Hill’s educational credentials include a Master’s Degree in Education and an B.A. Degree in Psychology, both from UCLA.

He was a member of three consecutive N.C.A.A. Championship basketball teams, under the guidance of Coach Wooden.

Hill has appeared on ABC's NIGHTLINE with Ted Koppel, PBS's NEWSHOUR with Jim Lehrer, CNBC’s POWER LUNCH with Bill Griffeth,  FOX SPORTS NET ROUNDTABLE with Bill MacDonald, ESPN's Bill Walton's Long Strange Trip, CBS' THE TEN GREATEST COACHES OF ALL TIME. Andy was also the subject of a feature on FOX SPORTS NET narrated by Todd Donoho and has recently appeared on HBO's REAL SPORTS with Bryant Gumbel.

Kenny Booker
Kenny Booker
Realtor, Coldwell Banker, UCLA Basketball Letterman, 2-Year NCAA Champion

Kenny Booker continues to make an impact in the community that launched his stellar basketball career, which has seen him win championships at every level. He has been recognized as a top salesman and successful real estate agent for Coldwell Banker Coastal Alliance in Long Beach, a position he's held since 1988. After helping Long Beach Poly High School win two CIF basketball championships, Kenny was an All-Metropolitan Conference selection at Long Beach City College, helping the Vikings win the conference championship in 1971. He was inducted into the LBCC Hall of Champions in 2006. His play at LBCC earned him a full scholarship to play basketball for John Wooden's UCLA Bruins. Kenny was a starting guard and defensive specialist on the 1970 and 1971 UCLA teams that won the fourth and fifth of seven consecutive NCAA championships under the Hall of Fame coach.

After being drafted by the Phoenix Suns in 1971, Kenny played professionally in Europe for two seasons before returning to the United States. He became a coach, leading Verbum Dei High School of Los Angeles to a CIF championship. Today, Kenny keeps busy with a dual interest in business and sports, focusing on two of the key core values of John Wooden's Pyramid of Success: Initiative and Industriousness. For the past 30-plus years, he has served as a high school basketball official in Southern California. His work earned him an invitation to officiate international contests in Japan. He also officiates high school volleyball matches. In 2009, Kenny received the Referee of the Year award, presented by the Orange County Sports Assn. In his spare time, Kenny enjoys occasional roles as a stand-in and extra in the film industry. He still lives in Long Beach.

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RSVP for the Oct 28th Event
“Remembering Coach John Wooden”

Location Details:
College of Business Administration
California State University, Long Beach
Room CBA 139A
1250 Bellflower Blvd., MS - 8501
Long Beach, California 90840-8306

Visitors to the campus must purchase a parking permit at a yellow kiosk for $5.00.

There is a yellow kiosk located in Lot 15 adjacent to the CBA building.

Please park in the multistory parking structure adjacent to the College of Business Administration building on Merriam Way. Campus Map.

NOTE: After purchasing your permit, you may park in the spaces marked "Employees Only" in Lot 15 after 6:00 p.m.

Questions? Contact Sweta Mohandos, Notable Speaker Series Coordinator, smohando@csulb.edu or Alexandra Jordan ajordan3@csulb.edu