History seems fragile when Bud Withers ponders his five decades of writing about sports. A free throw here. A turnover there. Tyus Edney going coast to coast. Small moments could have changed reputations and much more if they had gone another way. Withers recalls some of those March Madness memories from his Hall of Fame career at three major newspapers in the Pacific Northwest. We discuss the old-school coaching styles of legends Ralph Miller and Dick Harter, the rise of Gonzaga basketball, and how Ken Griffey Jr. impacted Seattle’s love of baseball. Oh, and there’s also a rental car story because, well, . . . sportswriters.
Withers covered three Olympics, 20 Final Fours, and his numerous journalism awards include being named sportswriter of the year in Oregon and Washington six times. He was honored by Associated Press Sports Editors for a 1989 story detailing Princeton's epic near-upset of Georgetown in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Bud primarily wrote about college sports, served as past president of the U.S. Basketball Writers Association (1992-93) and was inducted into that organization’s Hall of Fame in 2010. He began his career at the Eugene Register-Guard in 1970 and left 17 years later to write for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. After 12 years there, he moved in 1999 to the Seattle Times, where he was a fixture until his retirement in April 2015.
Bud has remained busy with the keyboard. His fifth and latest sports book is about Harter’s controversial tenure in Eugene called “Mad Hoops: The dizzying, floor-burning ride of the Kamikaze Kids of Oregon.” He has also authored:
· “Glory Hounds: How a Small Northwest School Reshaped College Basketball”
· “Bravehearts: The Against-All Odds Rise of Gonzaga Basketball”
· “Ralph Miller – Spanning the Game”
· “Stadium Stories: Washington State Cougars – Great moments in football team’s history”
You can follow him on Twitter: @bud_withers