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Last Updated on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 254

The “Tigers” are phenomenally talented and determined baseball and basketball teams from East High School. The events occur after the tragic events of 1968 and 1969, when Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy are assassinated. Racial relations are strained and tensions are higher than ever before. Many cities are...

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The “Tigers” are phenomenally talented and determined baseball and basketball teams from East High School. The events occur after the tragic events of 1968 and 1969, when Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy are assassinated. Racial relations are strained and tensions are higher than ever before. Many cities are experiencing riots and demonstrations. But in Columbus, Ohio, the Tigers of East High School, a segregated school, win both the basketball and the baseball championships after defeating richer and bigger teams that were dominated by whites across the state. The textbooks, sports facilities, and other facilities at the East High School were inferior as compared to other schools. However, three men at East High School including Jack Gibbs, the principal, Paul Pennell, the white baseball coach, and Bob Hart, the white basketball coach use their leadership roles at the school to positively influence the students, the players, and their families. Gibbs continuously networked and roused support for the teams from the business owners, the parents, as well as the community leaders. Due to the high crime rate witnessed in the East Side, Gibbs ensured that the students were too busy with school activities to get involved in mischievous activities. Despite the poor training facilities, East High School goes ahead to with the basketball and baseball championships in Ohio State, and produce stars including Eddie Ratleff who played for the national basketball team that represented the United States in the 1972 Olympic Games. The story is that of an exceptionally illuminating social story and an inspirational sports story.

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