George Toley Autobiography Is Published
The book chronicles the life of the legendary USC men's tennis coach.
"The Golden Age of College Tennis: A USC Coach's Unique Contributions to the Game"--the autobiography of legendary Trojan men's coach George Toley--has been published.
Written with longtime sportswriter Joe Jares, the book chronicles the impressive career of the late Toley, who led USC to 10 NCAA team championships during his career.
The 208-page softcover book, which includes photos of Toley throughout his career, was published by The Americas Group. The cover price is $15.95. It is available by contacting the publisher directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 654 N. Sepulveda Blvd. #1, Los Angeles, CA 90049.
Beginning with his playing career, which included his days as a nationally-ranked player at USC in the early 1940s, the book segues to his days as a teaching pro at the Beverly Hills Tennis Club and as the head pro at the Los Angeles Tennis Club.
Toley then details his 27 coaching seasons (1954-80) at USC, where he developed such players as Stan Smith, Bob Lutz, Dennis Ralston and Alex Olmedo. In all, 9 of his players won the NCAA singles crown and 12 Trojan duos captured the NCAA doubles title. His teams won 82% of their dual matches (430-92-4). A number of his pupils went on to win Grand Slam events and several were ranked No. 1 in the world.
The book next delves into Toley's efforts to grow the sport in Mexico, where he was known as the "Father of Mexican Tennis." He coached Mexico in the Davis Cup, recruited some of the nation's finest players for his Trojan teams (including the late Rafael Osuna and Raul Ramirez) and held an annual summer youth tennis camp in Ensenada.
Toley also brings readers along as he recounts memories of some of tennis' hallowed grounds, including Wimbledon and Forest Hills, and some of its greatest players, such as Bill Tilden, Jack Kramer, Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King.
Following each of the book's 10 chapters, Toley provides some tennis-playing tips that shed light on his coaching knowledge and style.
Toley, a member of the Collegiate Tennis and USC Athletic Halls of Fame, died on March 1, 2008, at age 91. He read the book's final manuscript prior to his passing.
Jares, who also has authored 7 other books, is a 1959 USC graduate who was a sportswriter for a number of media outlets, including Sports Illustrated, the Los Angeles Times and the Los Angeles Daily News. He also taught sportswriting at USC.
Jares' 1975 Sports Illustrated feature on Toley led to a long friendship with the coach, resulting in the collaboration on this book.
**Click below to view excerpts from "The Golden Age of College Tennis" selected by Joe Jares.**
By Stan Drobac
By Joe Jares