Book

Dream Like a Champion was published by University of Nebraska Press in September 2017. It is an exploration of Nebraska volleyball coach John Cook’s ever-evolving approach to leadership, training, recruiting and motivation. Cook won his fourth national title with the Cornhuskers and was inducted into the American Volleyball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in December of 2017.

The book is out now in hardcover and paperback and is also available for Kindle and NOOK.

An excerpt of the book is available here, and you can read more about the writing of it at UNP’s Behind the Book blog.


Great coaches and teachers relentlessly strive for learning and improvement – in their people, in their teams, and in themselves. John Cook’s story is permeated with that pursuit: what an innovator! If you crave the ‘better,’ you’d better read this book.

-KARCH KIRALY, head coach, U.S. women’s National Volleyball Team

John Cook has accomplished nearly everything a volleyball coach can achieve. He has done this not by focusing just on recruiting great players or the physical skills of his players. In Dream Like a Champion John reveals his relentless quest for better team chemistry, improving communication skills, proper goal setting, and attention to detail – which together result in peak performance.

-TOM OSBORNE, head coach, University of Nebraska football, 1973-97

The thing that strikes me the most about John Cook is the amount of thought and energy he gives to every possible detail in coaching. John’s reflection about his own coaching and the Nebraska program frequently leads to action, which is how both an individual and a program stay ahead in coaching and leadership.

-TERRY PETTIT, head coach, University of Nebraska women’s volleyball, 1977-99

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