John Wooden

In 1996 Coach Boren met Coach John Wooden at a clinic in California. Upon learning that Boren was a free throw shooting coach, Coach Wooden told the story about when he was playing semi-pro ball in the 1930’s for $50 per game, he was able to string together a long streak of free throws made. It took several games, but when he got to 100 without a miss, the owner of the team stopped the game, came out on the court, and gave Wooden a $100 dollar bill. Coach Wooden mentioned that at the time, he had never even seen a $100 dollar bill. Boren then asked Coach Wooden how much longer the streak lasted, and the answer was,” I’m not sure, I think I finally missed at about 137 or 138″. After substantial research, this appears to be the world record longest consecutive streak of made free throws by any basketball player, amateur or professional, in game conditions. Most people these days think of Coach Wooden as one of the most successful coaches of all time, but he was obviously a terrific player as well. The above story about the $100 for his first 100 made free throws is covered in his book Wooden on Leadership, which Coach Boren strongly recommends every basketball player read.

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