Inspirational Basketball Quotes by John Robert Wooden (1910-2010)

John Robert Wooden

An American basketball player and coach, born in Indiana, is the first person to be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame as a player and coach. He received three straight All-America selections as a guard at Purdue University and was named as junior team captain. Wooden served as Navy lieutenant during World War II, and then became the coach for the basketball team.

His basketball teams won continuous Indiana Collegiate Conference titles and notched an impressive record over two seasons. Read more.

  • “Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man given. Be grateful. The conceit is self-given. Be careful.”


  • “Whatever you do in life, surround yourself with smart people who’ll argue with you.”


  • “Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.”


  • “It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”


  • “If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?”


  • “Today is the only day. Yesterday is gone.”


  • “Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.”


  • “Never mistake activity for achievement.”


  • “Success comes from knowing that you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.”


  • “Ability may get you to the top, but it takes a character to keep you there.”


We hope you enjoyed reading these inspirational basketball quotes and that truly motivated you. These are all great basketball quotes from some of the most successful and respected coaches and players.