Play Their Hearts Out
A Coach, His Star Recruit, and the Youth Basketball Machine
Narrated by Emily Rose Speer / 15 hours 8 minutes
Eight years of unfettered access and a keen sense of a story's deepest truths allow Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist George Dohrmann to take readers inside the machine that produces America's basketball stars. Drawing on eight years of reporting and telling the very specific tale of one talented young recruit, his coach, and his teammates, Dohrmann immerses listeners in the world of grassroots basketball, where men hunt for future NBA stars and young boys and their parents navigate a tumultuous course in pursuit of basketball glory.
At the book's heart are the personal stories of two compelling figures: Joe Keller, an ambitious coach with a master plan to find and promote "the next LeBron," and Demetrius Walker, a fatherless latchkey kid who falls under Keller's sway and struggles to live up to unrealistic expectations. In Play Their Hearts Out, Dohrmann presents a thoroughly compelling narrative, exposing the gritty reality beneath so many dreams of fame and glory.