Alumnus reflects on ‘the way we were’ in new book

by the College of Education at Illinois  /   Mar 14, 2017

Alumnus Michael WoodsMichael Woods, Ed.M. ’68, Ed.D. ’79, spent nearly 50 years as a teacher and coach in public schools and as an Illinois faculty member. Basketball was a major part of his youth, which he reflects on in a new book he wrote called The Game: The Way We Were to the Way We Are.

The 77-year-old Woods was inspired to write The Game after discovering his grandchildren didn’t know much about their family’s history. For Woods, that history started in Fulton, Illinois, where hoops was huge.

“You couldn’t grow up in the Woods family in the 1950s without being inundated with basketball,” Woods told Jim Dey of The News-Gazette. “You ate and slept basketball. Basketball was every day.”

Woods was president of the Champaign district teachers union for 16 years and in the 1980s briefly served in an administrative post that oversaw school desegregation efforts.

Fully retired since 2012, he and his wife now travel the country in a 25-foot van, often visiting western states.

Read more about Woods’s reflections on roundball.

Photo by Rick Danzl of The News-Gazette.