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Inside Rupp’s Little Black Book

rupps book


Oscar Combs has been feeling froggy on Twitter today, teasing the Wildcat faithful after Tweeting out the above picture with the caption, “This little personal 1960 date book of Coach Rupp contains a wealth of fun stuff & great recruiting info.” While Oscar claims he ran across this rare gem in a box of junk dropped off in his office, I’m sure he had to show a few fisticuffs to land the most intriguing thing to cross my path in a long time. A name that I’ve uttered millions of times is one that I know very little about in a personal context, relying on a few video clips and stats to formulate a picture of the myth in my mind. Although Oscar isn’t giving us a full book report from this 53 year old notebook, the few things he did share are pretty cool.


A. Telephone numbers were weird; I’m not sure what New York sportscaster Lindsey Nelson’s strange code of CI-76548-EXT. 3623 really is. I’ don’t know exactly how to punch that in my iPhone, but if any person born before 1970 could inform me I’d appreciate it.

B. Like the current fearless leader of Big Blue Nation, Coach Rupp was a master of eating meat. 3.5 pounds of summer sausage probably didn’t last long, especially when he had to save room for the US Choice Sirloin from Horn’s Meats in Chicago. If the Illuminati connection between Rupp and Cal hadn’t been proved yet, this meat connection is empirical proof.

C. Rupp not only used this book to write down telephone numbers and make meat grocery lists, he also used it while at work. The little black book traveled with him while recruiting, proclaiming Muncie Central’s Ron Bonham as the best player in Indiana in 1960. Bonham went on to play for the Cincinnati Bearcats before spending five years in the NBA, proving that Mr. Rupp was right all along.


The stuff inside this book would likely blow any fan’s mind. I can’t wait to see what else is inside.

Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

15 Comments for Inside Rupp’s Little Black Book

  1. Nick
    4:33 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    CI-76548 would be 247-6458. And I was born in 1982.

  2. Martha
    4:36 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Call me at Klondike5-5555

  3. mahatma
    4:49 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    The first two digits were always referred to as a word that started with those two letters. Like Martha said, ‘Klondike’5-5555 would be 555-5555. There was a pop song way back in the olden days (1940) called ‘Pennsylvania’6-5000, the actual phone number of the Hotel Pennsylvania in Manhattan.

  4. UK fan
    4:51 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Sometimes I’d rather the “cuteness” not be bludgeoned into my head. It makes it not cute at all.

  5. duh
    5:02 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    I think the book also said the uofl tard fans suck hard.

  6. jvice
    5:21 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Glad to see all the knowledge of the old telephone system here. Makes me all nostalgic, even though I don’t think they’ve used that system in my lifetime.

  7. Paul
    5:27 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Bonham favored a base-line jumper from deep in the corner. Would clean up on threes today. Maybe 6-4, he was a rugged rebounder and defender. Paul from Dayton

  8. Teachable Mo'
    5:30 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Telephone numbers haven’t been the same since they did away with the alphabetic prefix. And they sure haven’t been as memorable.

  9. Materd
    5:54 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    I doubt there is much mention of Loserville in Rupp’s book. They didn’t exist then and they don’t exist now. Suck it card trolls!!

  10. Back to Back
    6:19 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Rupp had front butt and it was gross.

  11. Drone Stryker
    6:36 pm August 4, 2013 Permalink

    Brookings………burger, fries, chilli…….

  12. TomSr
    7:59 am August 5, 2013 Permalink

    Born in 50. Phone number is legit. For example, St Matthews area in Louisville used to be (Twin Brook) TW#-####. Today the surviving exchange is 89#-####. The Highlands used to be HI#-####. Today the surviving exchange is 45#-#### (I guess they didn’t want to repeat the first digit?). And no, we didn’t crank the phone and ask Millie to connect us. But we did use a rotary dial, -no push button dial.

  13. TomSr
    8:04 am August 5, 2013 Permalink

    Also, no area codes. To make a long distance call you had to go through an operator.

  14. RuppManager
    10:02 am August 5, 2013 Permalink

    I was his last student manager.You never wanted to be in the dreaded black book.Joe B. would tell him recruiting tidbits ..into the black book..Coach Rupp a creature of habit..never changed.

  15. bluesman
    11:55 am August 5, 2013 Permalink

    If Cotton Nash had finished his H.S. days in Indiana he would have been the best player in 1960 imo, Nash could play C,F,G,was bigger stronger than Bonham.Buster Briley from Madison IN. was very good also.