The Junction Boys
How 10 Days in Hell with Bear Bryant Forged a Champion Team
Publication Date: September 2000
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The legendary Paul "Bear" Bryant is recognized nationwide as one of the greatest coaches ever. So why did he always cite his 1-9 A&M team of 1954 as his favorite? This is the story of a remarkable team--and the beginning of the legend.
"The Junction Boys" tells the story of Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant's legendary training camp in the small town of Junction, Texas. In a move that many consider the salvation of the Texas A&M football program, Coach Bryant put 115 players through the most grueling practices ever imagined. Only a handful of players survived the entire 10 days, but they braved the intense heat of the Texas sun and the burning passion of their coach, and turned a floundering team into one of the nation's best. "The Junction Boys" is more than just a story of tough practices without water breaks. An extraordinary fellowship was forged from the mind-numbing pain. The thirty-five survivors bonded together like no other team in America. They profited from the Junction experience; the knowledge they took back with them to College Station, about themselves and what they were capable of, would be used for the rest of their lives.
In vivid and powerful images reminiscent of "Friday Night Lights," "Hoosiers," and "The Last Picture Show," these young men and their driven coach come to life. "The Junction Boys" contains all the hallmarks of a classic sports story, and it combines America's love of college football with an extraordinary story of perseverance and triumph.
Began his football coaching career with the University of Alabama as an assistant coach to the legendary Coach "Bear" Bryant.
“It’s the best sports book I’ve ever read.”
- Pat Summerall, Fox Sports
"I heard the story of the Junction Boys from gene Stallings when he was on my staff with the Cowboys. Those guys were some of the toughest to ever play the game. Jim Dent has really brough the story to life in a book any football fan would like to read."
- Tom Landry, former coach of the Dallas Cowboys
"...the best book on a sports topic I've read in years."
- Furman Bisher, The Atlanta Journal Constitution
- Sports Illustrated
"You'll want to laugh, you might even want to cry, but you'll know what legends are made of by the time you finish this book. They'll be talking about this book for a long time."
- Texas Aggie Magazine
"...highly readable...Dent manages to celebrate the myth and recreate the mystique of the Bear while not glossing over the consequences of the coach's uncompromising drive to win."
- The Birmingham News