Carson Medley, whose research focuses on transformational leadership and the identity, social, emotional, academic, and athletic development of student athletes, would love to come and speak at your elementary school, junior high school, high school, community college, college, or university about the lessons learned in his book Through the Red Door: The Eternal Season of Coach Clink and the Division II Chico State Wildcats.
Recent Amazon Testimonials
Loved, loved, loved this book. Carson Medley is a gifted writer who uses his craft, his language, and intimate knowledge to pull the reader into the challenges, angst, heartbreaks, and victories of his hometown college basketball team, the Chico State Wildcats. Throughout, Carson’s portrayal allowed me to feel as if I were there, on campus and at the games with the team, the coaches, and the fans through the weeks and months of their journey to success. The textural magic of the author’s words in describing the team, coaches, and trainers, as well as the fans, made this a book I could not put down. One of my favorite parts was getting to know Coach Clink. What a dedicated, inspiring and wonderful person. I wish more college sports programs had this giant of a man to choose, create, mentor and develop individuals and teams with his dedication, humanness, and love of the game. Through The Red Door is not just an insightful and thoughtful book about young men learning how to achieve team and individual successes, it is the story of how a culture and supportive framework gives the greatest gifts to its players both on and off the court, before and after graduation. Bravo.
As a college hoops fan, it’s been frustrating to watch the scandals that have smeared the reputations of D1 programs. Losing respect for a sport or team you love hurts. But this fresh look inside a successful D2 program was full of moments that I could relate to, and has renewed my faith in the game. The author includes so many great details — I love that Coach Clink drives a regular Chevy truck like the rest of us. The story of his journey would benefit anyone who is passionate about pursuing a particular dream job. Coach Clink has built a very respectable program over the years that carefully selects, and then transforms great high school basketball players into college student athletes who succeed both on the court and in the classroom. They are polite and have surprising qualities that show the recruiting efforts go further and deeper than just reviewing a players’ stats. The writer’s exclusive inside access makes you feel like you’re right there with them on campus, at practice, watching film, playing games, and experiencing the glorious wins and heartbreaking losses. It is a very visceral book! Through the sport they love, and through that Red Door, these guys are being groomed to be successful men after college — I loved the part about Coach Clink officiating the wedding of one of his former players. That says everything right there, doesn’t it? Such a fun read. Going to buy it for my son’s coach!
I have loved college basketball for decades, but it has been disheartening to see the scandals that have become headlines in some of my favorite D1 programs. Not all hope is lost, though. Carson Medley’s book, Through the Red Door, takes a look at a successful D2 program in the heart of Northern California, the Chico State Wildcats. He looks at the coaches, the players, even some of the boosters who support the program, and he gives that fly on the wall look that enthusiasts like me (dare I say junkies?) would love to have.
If you are a recruit, wondering what a year in the life of a D2 player is like, you will eat up Medley’s story. If you are the parent of a serious basketball player, you will benefit from this honest look at the demands, the struggles, the ups and the downs of the D2 scholarship athlete’s life. If you just love basketball, and want to root for a team with integrity, I highly recommend Through The Red Door. Coach Clink and his staff and players give you plenty to root for. Go Wildcats.
Great book, wonderfully written. It is a must read! Carson Medley captures the heart and soul of a college town basketball team’s journey to greatness. The book is such a tribute to the sport of basketball and even a greater tribute to the team and coach’s leadership, hard work and honor. This book also goes beyond basketball. It captures the essence of what it takes in this world to be successful. On finishing the book I am left with a deep respect and care for the athletes and coaches….and all those that supported the amazing team that worked so hard to walk through the red door. I am also thrilled to have read a book that weaves a championship team into what it takes to be truly successful and a good human being. This book will stay with me forever.
This book belongs on your bookshelf and will be right at home in the company of A Season on the Brink, Paper Lion, and Friday Night Lights. The Chico State Wildcats are about to become America’s favorite college basketball program.
— John Canzano, sports columnist at The Oregonian and two-time Associated Press Sports Editors national sports columnist of the year.
Through the Red Door should be required reading for every educator, every coach, every kid with a dream, and every parent with a dream for their kid.
— Coach Bob Williams, NCAA Division II National Championship, UC Santa Barbara head coach for 19 years.
If you yearn for the days of college basketball when it was local, intimate, pure, and the uniforms were without corporate logos on them, Through the Red Door is the book for you. There is not simply one shining moment here but hundreds of pages worth.
— Coach Steve Lavin, former UCLA and St. John’s head coach, Fox Sports analyst, Pac-12 Network
Carson Medley sat in the shadows for a year and followed us. Through the Red Door is his account of our basketball season and all of the euphoria and heartbreak that went into it.”
— Coach Greg Clink, Head Men’s Basketball Coach, Chico State Wildcats