At the top of Coach Wooden’s Pyramid of Success is what he referred to as Competitive Greatness. He defined Competitive Greatness as “A real love for the hard battle, knowing it offers the opportunity to be at your best when your best is required.”
He stated, “Competitive Greatness is not defined by victory nor denied by defeat. It exists in the effort that precedes those two ‘impostors’ as well as their accomplices: fame, fortune, and power…”
Coach Wooden believed that Competitive Greatness is described in the poem written by sportswriter Grantland Rice, “The Great Competitor”:
Beyond the winning and the goal,
beyond the glory and the fame,
he feels the flame within his soul,
born of the spirit of the game.
And where the barriers my wait,
Built up by the opposing Gods,
He finds a thrill in bucking fate
And riding down the endless odds.
Where others wither in the fire
Or fall below some raw mishap,
Where others lag behind or tire
And break beneath the handicap.
He finds a new and deeper thrill
To take him on the uphill spin,
Because the test is greater still,
And something he can revel in.
Live, Work and Relate Well!