The Norman Transcript

Features

May 18, 2014

Author Edgar Frost suggests coach Port Robertson helped propel OU’s football program to prominence

(Continued)

NORMAN —

Frost details several ways the coach went out of his way help athletes retain their eligibility, reinforcing that his impact went well beyond coaching the freshman football team.

It is obvious to the reader that Frost’s robust original research gave him the confidence to write with a strong voice. He richly describes Robertson’s total support for his wrestlers and the program he brought back from obscurity (no scholarships) at OU that won national championships in 1952, 1953 and 1957.

The coach’s success on the mat, a career .750 winning percentage, is still the best for any OU wrestling coach, who only coached after his tenure. Robertson’s devotion to coaching the Sooner freshman football team is another important subject the book brings to life.

Frost may have helped raise the level of writing about that Wilkinson era by sharing Robertson’s former student-athlete’s worshipful oral histories in a style that may soon be judged as literature.

On his way to turning this oral history into prose, Frost rivals Studs Terkel’s style in the 1974 book “Working,” that same style that later won the Chicago writer the 1985 Pulitzer Prize in General Nonfiction. Frost’s book is comparable to Terkel’s work in this new author’s portrayal of the different facets of Robertson’s devotion to his alma mater and its student-athletes.

For most OU fans, this vivid depiction of first-hand accounts from this era will probably be a great read. For the reader who has direct knowledge or a background in the way history has portrayed OU’s early success, this is literature.

This writer also sees literary similarities in one passage that resemble Earnest Hemingway’s style. Although Hemingway didn’t write nonfiction in book form, what passes between the ambulances drivers in “A Farewell to Arms” might be nonfiction.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Features
  • Board welcomes new member

    In its June meeting, the members of the Mary Abbott Children’s House board of directors elected Barbara Henderson to serve the remaining term of Anne Ederington, who resigned from the board in May due to moving from Norman. Henderson and ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Pancake breakfast set

    The Police Explorer youth organization will host an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast from 7 to 11 a.m. Saturday at the Norman Masonic Lodge, 1700 N. Porter Ave. All-you-can-eat pancakes, sausage, milk, orange juice and coffee costs $5. ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Center will be more than a building

    Many volunteers who assist veterans and surviving spouses have driven more than an hour to be at the Goldsby Community Center by 7 a.m. each Thursday. The volunteer of the week is from Harrah and has made that drive for the last three ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Senior organizations that appeal to conservatives

    Dear Savvy Senior, Can you recommend any advocacy organizations for seniors other than AARP? I cut up my AARP card a few years back when they supported Obamacare and am now looking for another organization that better represents me....

    July 29, 2014

  • Seniors adjust to different sleep patterns

    According to the National Institutes of Health, older adults need seven to nine hours of sleep each night. However, sleep patterns change with age; this is often evident in the nursing home population. Frequent causes of interrupted sleep ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Ceremony marks opening of community center

    A July 23 ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the addition of another feature to the Chickasaw Nation Carter service campus in Ardmore....

    July 27, 2014

  • Chickasaw Cultural Center a terrific place to visit

    SULPHUR — The Chickasaw Cultural Center is a magnificent tribute to a proud people and their storied heritage. Located an easy hour’s drive south from Norman, it’s among the finest travel destinations in Oklahoma. Set on 109 scenic acres, ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Prisoner re-entry planning for offenders with mental illness

    People leaving incarceration face a variety of challenges even without a diagnosis of mental illness. But for those who face mental health issues, re-entry into society can be troublesome. That is the topic in the first of the 2014 Fall ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Exhibit takes families on food expedition

    If your palate enjoys culinary diversity or if you’re interested in introducing new flavors to your family, join the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History in tasting international delights and create your own treat during Family ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Resident makes art in new home

    There’s an old saying about a picture being “worth a thousand words,” which took on a literal meaning recently....

    July 27, 2014