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Google Doodle 15.01.2021 : Celebrating Dr James Naismith Canadian-American Physical Educator


Published on Jan 22, 2021

Google Doodle 15.01.2021 : Celebrating Dr James Naismith Canadian-American Physical Educator

 

Google Doodle 15.01.2021 Celebrating Dr James Naismith : James Naismith (November 6, 1861 – November 28, 1939) was a Canadian-American physical educator, physician, Christian chaplain, sports coach, and innovator.

In 1891, he left Canada for Springfield, Massachusetts and invented the game of basketball. He wrote the original basketball rule book and founded the University of Kansas basketball program. Naismith lived to see basketball adopted as an Olympic demonstration sport in 1904 and as an official event at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, as well as the birth of the National Invitation Tournament (1938) and the NCAA Tournament




Google Doodle 15.01.2021 Celebrating Dr James Naismith

Google Doodle

Born and raised on a farm near Almonte, Ontario, Naismith studied and taught physical education at Montreal’s McGill University before moving to the United States, where in late 1891, he designed the game of basketball while he was teaching at the International YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Seven years after inventing basketball, Naismith received his medical degree in Denver in 1898. He then arrived at the University of Kansas, later becoming the Kansas Jayhawks' athletic director and coach.

While a coach at Kansas, Naismith coached Phog Allen, who later became the coach at Kansas for 39 seasons, beginning a lengthy and prestigious coaching tree. Allen then went on to coach legends including Adolph Rupp and Dean Smith, among others, who themselves coached many notable players and future coaches. Despite having coached his final season in 1907, Naismith remains the only coach in Kansas men's basketball history with a losing record.

Springfield College: Invention of Basketball

At the Springfield YMCA, Naismith struggled with a rowdy class that was confined to indoor games throughout the harsh New England winter, thus was perpetually short-tempered. Under orders from Dr. Luther Gulick, head of physical education there, Naismith was given 14 days to create an indoor game that would provide an "athletic distraction"; Gulick demanded that it would not take up much room, could help its track athletes to keep in shape and explicitly emphasized to "make it fair for all players and not too rough".

In his attempt to think up a new game, Naismith was guided by three main thoughts. Firstly, he analyzed the most popular games of those times (rugby, lacrosse, soccer, football, hockey, and baseball); Naismith noticed the hazards of a ball and concluded that the big, soft soccer ball was safest. Secondly, he saw that most physical contact occurred while running with the ball, dribbling or hitting it, so he decided that passing was the only legal option.

Finally, Naismith further reduced body contact by making the goal unguardable, namely placing it high above the player's heads. To score goals, he forced the players to throw a soft, lobbing shot that had proven effective in his old favorite game duck on a rock. Naismith christened this new game "Basket Ball" and put his thoughts together in 13 basic rules.

The first game of "Basket Ball" was played in December 1891. In a handwritten report, Naismith described the circumstances of the inaugural match; in contrast to modern basketball, the players played nine versus nine, handled a soccer ball, not a basketball, and instead of shooting at two hoops, the goals were a pair of peach baskets: "When Mr. Stubbins brot [sic] up the peach baskets to the gym I secured them on the inside of the railing of the gallery.

This was about 10 feet from the floor, one at each end of the gymnasium. I then put the 13 rules on the bulletin board just behind the instructor's platform, secured a soccer ball, and awaited the arrival of the class ... The class did not show much enthusiasm, but followed my lead ... I then explained what they had to do to make goals, tossed the ball up between the two center men and tried to keep them somewhat near the rules. Most of the fouls were called for running with the ball, though tackling the man with the ball was not uncommon

Head-Coaching Record

In 1898, Naismith became the first basketball coach of University of Kansas also known as the first basketball coach in the world. He compiled a record of 55–60 and is ironically the only losing coach in Kansas history. Naismith is at the beginning of a massive and prestigious coaching tree, as he coached Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame coach Phog Allen, who himself coached Hall of Fame coaches Dean Smith, Adolph Rupp, and Ralph Miller who all coached future coaches as well.

Season
Team
Wins
Losses
Win %
1898–99 Kansas 7 4 .636
1899–1900 Kansas 3 4 .429
1900–01 Kansas 4 8 .333
1901–02 Kansas 5 7 .417
1902–03 Kansas 7 8 .467
1903–04 Kansas 5 8 .385
1904–05 Kansas 5 6 .455
1905–06 Kansas 12 7 .632
1906–07 Kansas 7 8 .467
Total Kansas 55 60 .478

Naismith invented the game of basketball and wrote the original 13 rules of this sport; for comparison, the NBA rule book features 66 pages. The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts, is named in his honor, and he was an inaugural inductee in 1959. The National Collegiate Athletic Association rewards its best players and coaches annually with the Naismith Awards, among them the Naismith College Player of the Year, the Naismith College Coach of the Year, and the Naismith Prep Player of the Year. After the Olympic introduction to men's basketball in 1936, women's basketball became an Olympic event in Montreal during the 1976 Summer Olympics.


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