By Tom McQueeney, Special to The Island Connection
Several years in compilation, Around in Circles details the seemingly endless stories of a local NCAA basketball celebrity, Les Robinson.
If ever there was a Forrest Gump figure in the sport, this affable Sullivan’s Island resident would be the main character. The Les Robinson story weaves through the legends with whom he became acquainted as a teenager—Jerry West, Oscar Robertson, Wilt Chamberlain, Elgin Baylor, Bill Russell, and Jerry Lucas. There are others from James Worthy to Tom Gugliotta, and David Thompson to Christian Laettner.
There’s a great story on each player that joggles his incredible memory.
Robinson’s graduation to Tobacco Road basketball under Coaches Everett Case and Press Maravich brought him other celebrity associations to include Pistol Pete Maravich. His coaching career brought the rocking chair stories to a new level — Dean Smith, Jim Calhoun, Bobby Cremins, Mike Montgomery, Bobby Knight, Terry Holland, Jim Valvano, Al McGuire, Roy Williams, and Mike Krzyzewski.
In Robinson’s “other” career, he served as Athletic Director at East Tennessee State, North Carolina State, and The Citadel. His service on the NCAA Men’s Basketball Selection Committee engenders yet more entertaining stories. He also served on the NCAA Men’s Basketball NIT Selection Committee.
The width and breadth of his experiences include personal insights, endearing reflections, and the main ingredient of the book — his inimitable humor.
The book is available at The Citadel Gift Shop (immediately), Barnes and Noble and Amazon (by order), and anywhere you see Les Robinson!
Around in Circles is the eighth book written by local author W. Thomas McQueeney, a Citadel graduate who has known Les Robinson for nearly a half century.