I've always admired Mr. Benson and think that he has a strong writing
talent. But his inability to let go of his huge love of BYU sports long enough
to write an objective article has hampered his career forever. This is another
example. McGills story is inspirational and all Lee Benson can see is a guy who
blamed racism and everyone else for the things he suffered. I've not read
this book, but I've seen plenty of interviews with "Billy the Hill"
and he's always seemed genuinely proud of himself for pulling himself up
after reaching the bottom. This should be respected. As another poster wrote, if
this story happened south of the Point of the Mountain--there would have been
nothing but praise from Lee Benson. Objectivity, Mr. Benson. Learn it. Use it.
I watched the 60 point performance at BYU while a student there. It was an
amazing game. I tried to watch him play as much as I could and followed him
through his career. I'm sorry that his life turned out the way it did.
Haven't read the book, so I can't say whether I agree with Lee that
the purpose is to blame all of McGill's life's troubles on everything
but his ability to play defense. But I do think that judgment is unfit for
someone in his stance to make, regardless of if it is true or not. Is a past
filled with poverty, racism, domestic problems and falling victim to crime ever
an excuse for bad behavior? No. But people never exposed to it have no frame of
reference as to how it actually affects people's lives. That is my biggest
issue with many fellow LDS church members, especially those in Utah, is the
judgment of others' lives when the large part of their own
"success" is because of the vast opportunities provided for them from
birth, not necessarily from making the "right" choices, just from not
making the few wrong ones provided. Some people are seldom given right choices
In late April 1961 I was "introduced" to Billy the Hill by Jack Gardner
in my family's California living room. This introduction was via
Utah's Final Four highlight film where I witnessed several of Billy's
amazing performances. Not quite sure why Gardner was recruiting this short,
slow, white guy, but I chose to attend college in California.Sorry
to learn about his difficult life.
I remember watching Billy the Hill play when I was a kid. He was a great
college player who played for a class act coach. Too bad they don't have
replay games of him--it would still be fun to watch.
McGill is a legend!!Another reason college kids should get paid.
Glad he turned out OK. Wish Mr. McGill all the best. Go Cougars.
Billy McGill is still close to the Utah basketball program and is a great
supporter. He returns often to the "hill". The U needs to erect a
statue of McGill outside the entrance of the Huntsman Center.
Lee,If he had played for byu, you would of spun into a story about
overcoming adversity. Homer.