First and Long: A Black School, a White School and Their Season of Dreams

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9781932542035: First and Long: A Black School, a White School and Their Season of Dreams

Tells the story of two Wisconsin high schools--suburban and predominantly white Shorewood and Milwaukee's Catholic and predominantly black Messmer--and their decision to field a joint football team in 2001.

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About the Author:

Greg Borowski is a city hall reporter for the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel who attended Messmer High School and followed the team during that unique season.

From Booklist:

Two high schools, one suburban and predominantly white, the other Catholic and predominantly black, joined forces to field a football team in 2001. This unique partnership occurred in "hyper-segregated" Milwaukee, where one mile and a world of difference separate the two schools. At suburban Shorewood High School, "football was an afterthought"; Messmer High School didn't even have a team. Seeking additional player talent, the Shorewood coach came up with the idea to partner with Messmer in what would become "the only city-suburban pairing in the nation." This immensely readable account tracks the first difficult season of the "Messwood" team, which struggled mightily to win a game (they didn't), maintain racial harmony, and keep their fiery coach under control. More than a recitation of game statistics and foibles, this engagingly written account infuses personality into the players, staff, and students. Those who love high-school football will find themselves rooting for this diverse group of kids who never gave up, even though they got pounded every week by bigger, better, and more experienced teams. Sue-Ellen Beauregard
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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