Columbus native and nationally acclaimed author Wil Haygood's latest book chronicles East High School's pursuit of basketball and baseball state championships in 1969.
The book entitiled 'Tigerland' focuses on the school's athletic and academic accomplishments in spite of high racial tensions prompted by the 1968 assassination of Martin Luther King Junior. Haygood spoke this week at a Wexner Center for the Arts forum, sharing when he first told his editor about the idea.
Paul Pennell was an assistant basketball coach and the head baseball coach at East High School at that time. Pennell credited the students, faculty and school leadership for overcoming the challenges.
Haygood refers to his book as literary justice for those kids. He think the story of East High School's triumph in dark times will inspire today's citizenry as well.