What an interesting and fascinating book this former NFL player has given to the world. Tom’s insight on his and his father’s life is such an inspiration to any reader. Tom’s father, Geno McManus, was a family man that enjoyed not only his family but also his football. Geno loved to coach and teach football and other sports too, but football was his love. Geno probably could have been an NFL player as Tom eventually became, but the war short-circuited Geno’s career. When WWII began Geno and many of his college friends joined the military to fight a different battle than the ones he loved on the football field of play.
Tom tells early in his book about the many times he got in trouble because he enjoyed everything, even the things he knew were wrong. Not the kind of trouble that was against the law (well, most of the time) but things that would irritate friends, neighbors, and schoolmates, but Tom, as his father had taught him, knew what to say and do to make things “right!” Geno’s family had gone through the great depression and knew from his life and his parent’s life how tough living could be to just exist. Geno was quite a boxer and golfer, and he enjoyed beating up on the best he could find. He wanted to go to college but the depression forced his parents into making him work because money was so scarce. Geno worked at menial jobs making very little in wages but every little bit helped. Eventually Geno worked in a bank and enjoyed his football and boxing on the weekends. Many a Monday he would report to work black and blue.
Eventually Geno decided he had to go to college and enrolled at Rutgers and played football and boxed, being among the best at both. But, when Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Japanese on December 7, 1941 Geno joined up not knowing if he would ever be able to go back to Rutgers. He was in his sophomore year when he left. He went through training and became a pilot of the ufabetบนมือถือ monster “boxcar” B-24 Bomber.
The book shifts to Tom at this point when he was finishing up his high school after very successful football years. His dad was his biggest critic knowing that Tom would get an earful even if he did everything correctly on the field. Tom Coughlin, the future coach of the new Jacksonville NFL Jaguars, was coaching at Boston College, the school Tom had chosen from his scholarship opportunities. Little did Tom know what a roll Tom Coughlin would play in his future!