The Rise and Fall of Jim Thorpe
By Bill Crawford
(Wiley, Hardcover, 9780471557326, 288pp.)
Publication Date: October 2004
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"All American is riveting and grand-that rare pairing of exquisite writing and unassailable research. Crawford delivers you to an age when iconic titans like Jim Thorpe and Pop Warner marched across the planet, and he is the perfect guide to their enormous triumphs and tragedies. This is epic American history at its page-turning finest."
-Bill Minutaglio, author of City on Fire and First Son: George W. Bush and the Bush Family Dynasty
He was the greatest football running back of his era, leading his Carlisle Indian Industrial School team to victory over all the great college powerhouses. King Gustav of Sweden called him "the greatest athlete in the world" after he won gold medals for the decathlon and pentathlon at the 1912 Olympic Games. Yet Jim Thorpe was also at the center of the greatest sports scandal of the twentieth century-a scandal that took away his Olympic medals and banned him forever from intercollegiate sports.
Now, in this revealing new biography, Bill Crawford captures Jim Thorpe's remarkable rise and fall. From his youth on Oklahoma's Sac and Fox Indian reservation to his astounding feats on the gridiron, from his Olympic triumphs to his complex relationship with coach "Pop" Warner, who mentored, exploited, and ultimately betrayed him, All American brings you up close and personal with the greatest athlete of the twentieth century.
Bill Crawford is a journalist and media producer who has written for Texas Monthly, the Austin Chronicle, and other publications. He is the coauthor of Stevie Ray Vaughan: Caught in the Crossfire and the author or coauthor of several other books.