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Discussion Guide: Glory Road


Movie Synopsis

This is the exciting and inspirational true story of the team that changed college basketball -- and the nation -- forever! Josh Lucas stars as future Hall of Fame coach Don Haskins of tiny Texas Western University, who bucks convention by simply starting the best players he can find: history's first all African-American lineup. In a turbulent time of social and political change, their unlikely success sends shock waves through the sport that follow the underdog Miners all the way to an epic showdown with all-white, #1 ranked Kentucky for the National Championship! 

Glory Road movie poster


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Discussion Questions

  1. What is Coach Haskins biggest challenge in coaching in general and what makes his job uniquely difficult at Texas Western? How does he overcome these challenges?
  2. Does Coach Haskins only care about winning or is it something bigger? Is this important?
  3. When Coach Haskins allows players to “play their way” why is the team more effective?
  4. When Coach compliments his players, like Bobby Joe Hill, on their efforts, how does this help?
  5. Does Coach Rupp of Kentucky respect the Mighty Miners before the final game? Does this impact Kentucky’s performance?
  6. Black players and white players alike are threatened throughout the film. Does this force the team apart or cause them to embrace a united front? Is this important?
  7. Each player on the team clearly plays a specific role as an individual, but how do they combine their efforts to succeed as a team?
  8. Overall, Coach Haskins yells at his players but is also very caring at times. Would you consider him a ‘positive’ coach or one who relies only on negative criticism? Is this important?

What Parents Need To Know

Parents need to know that this film includes harsh language and imagery emerging from U.S. racism during the 1960s. Characters argue about terms used (spoken and written, in letters and graffiti) include the n-word, "Negro," "colored," and "honky." The Confederate flag appears in multiple shots during the final game. Characters' arguments over race and their on-court competitions lead to shoving and fighting. Some of the game footage shows minor rough play. Players sneak off to drink at a bar and appear at practice the next day hung over. Some white fans at games on the road throw trash at the integrated team as they enter and leave the court. One black player is beaten by a few white thugs, leaving him bloodied and bruised.

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Our partner, Positive Coaching Alliance, provides a collection of movie discussion guides, which aim to help you make the most out of movie viewing with your team or child. Movies provide many of "teachable moments" parents can share with their young athletes helping them be successful, contributing members of society.

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