UK legend Jack Givens penning new book

Published 5:03 pm Tuesday, May 16, 2023

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Former Kentucky All-American Jack Givens, the 1978 Final Four Most Outstanding Player when UK won the national championship, became an integral part of the Kentucky basketball program last season when he took over as analyst for the UK Radio Network after the passing of Mike Pratt, another former UK All-American.

Many younger UK fans may not know a lot about Givens, but they will have a chance to learn more soon because a new book — “They Call Me Goose: My Life in Kentucky Basketball and Beyond — is now in the works. It is described as an “intimate and all-encompassing look at the life and career of the basketball legend.”

It will share his start on the basketball court at Lexington’s Douglass Park in the legendary Dirt Bowl league to being named Kentucky’s 1974 Mr. Basketball to signing with UK. Obviously, it will take a look at his 41-point performance against Duke in the 1978 national title game.

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“Givens shares personal and endearing stories from his childhood—how he was initially interested in baseball instead of basketball, the summers spent with his grandmother in Danville, Kentucky, and the teachers and coaches who guided and supported him along his journey,” the book release noted.

“He also speaks candidly about his experiences with poverty, ruinous financial debt, the blowback from sexual assault allegations, and how his faith and his family helped sustain him through hardships and challenges.”

Givens is writing the book in collaboration with Doug Brunk, who has written two other UK sports books — “Wildcat Memories: Inside Stories from Kentucky Basketball Greats” and “Forty Minutes to Glory: Inside the Kentucky Wildcats’ 1978 Championship Season.” Both were terrific reads and “Wildcat Memories” had stories with Wah Wah Jones, Dan Issel, Joe B. Hall, Kyle Macy, Tubby Smith, Patrick Patterson, Darius Miller and John Wall.

The scheduled sales date is March 5, 2024.