He was born in 1937 in West Virginia, a small child with a slight frame, an average athlete and a poor student. He overcame this apparent mediocrity through a burning desire to prove himself.
It’s hard to picture Lou Holtz as the shy child he claims to have been, but Mr. Holtz attributes his famous wit to his birth order. The oldest child had the responsibility he said, the youngest the attention. Stuck in the middle, he had to be funny to get attention.
After graduating from high school the skinny young man played linebacker for two seasons at Kent State before suffering a career ending injury and adjusting his sights to coaching. Lou Holtz tends to describe himself in unflattering terms. He once said, “I’m five feet ten inches tall, weigh 152 pounds, speak with a lisp, and appear to be afflicted with a combination of beriberi and scurvy. I wasn’t a great athlete. I’m not very impressive, I’m not very smart, and I’m not very intelligent.”
That’s okay, Lou. The record books say you’re still one of the most successful college football coaches of all time, with a gift for turning losing teams into winners.
Lou Holtz is the only coach to lead four different programs to top-20 finishes and six different programs to bowl games. He had eight top ten finishes and one undefeated national championship with the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Today he works as a college football analyst and enjoys traveling as a world-renown speaker, popular for the motivational techniques and trademark humor he dispenses in equal doses.
In today’s southern quote we hear the wit of the coaching legend who has twice been named the best motivational speaker in the country. Lou Holtz once said, “The man who complains about the way the ball bounces is likely the one who dropped it.” – Lou Holtz