Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Bo Ryan gets behind basketball story that’s almost too good to be true

Brian Borland had no idea his mother, Carolyn, was a star from a bygone era, a basketball player who lit up gymnasiums in small-town Iowa with her shooting and passing, who set scoring records that stood for years.

Borland knew his father, Glenn, had been a team captain at the University of Wisconsin in the late 1950s, known for his signature left-handed hook shot. But his mom? There was no reason to suspect she had a competitive bone in her body.

“All of her friends in Madison, her bowling buddies, her bridge club buddies, they had no idea she ever played one second of sports,” Borland said.

In January 2006, he heard his parents talking about an upcoming 50-year reunion in Des Moines, where the 1956 Iowa girls state championship team would be honored.

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Fayette Leader: Maynard 8 Miles to Become a Movie

In 1956, Carolyn (Nicholson) Borland, along with her sister, Glenda, led Maynard to its first girls’ state basketball title.

Borland didn’t know it then, but she helped shape the future of Iowa high school girls’ basketball. Four years after her son, Brian Borland, told her story in his book “Maynard 8 Miles,” it was announced that she will be enshrined on the big screen when the book is made into a movie in the coming years.

“It is very exciting,” Brian Borland said during a phone interview. “It was something that I have been working on. When I wrote the book, I kind of had this vision that it could be a movie because it was such a compelling story.”

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Wisconsin State Journal – Basketball: Movie script next for Brian Borland’s book based on his parents, one a ‘humble superstar’

While securing a meeting with screenwriter and film producer Angelo Pizzo was a big deal, Brian Borland wasn’t sure where it would go from there.

As Borland took a seat in the living room of Pizzo’s home in Bloomington, Indiana, the Madison native couldn’t help but wonder if he’d be walking back out the door in five minutes.

In fact, his departure wouldn’t come for another six hours.

By the time Borland left, his labor of love — “Maynard 8 Miles,” a book he wrote about his parents — was one big step closer to becoming a movie. Pizzo, best known for writing the scripts for sports movies “Hoosiers” and “Rudy,” was so interested in Borland’s book that he agreed to make it his next endeavor.

“If you think about who you would want to write the screenplay to the movie,” Borland said, “he’s at the top of the list.”

Business cards for Borland’s book, which was published in 2013, promote it as a “Hoosiers” meets “A League of Their Own” story. After reading it and speaking with Borland, Pizzo saw the potential to write a movie script that was different from his previous projects.

“I loved Brian’s book and thought immediately that here was an opportunity to write a sports story from the female vantage point, something I’ve never done,” Pizzo said in a statement.

How Pizzo chooses to write the script remains to be seen. For Borland, a key moment in the project came in 2006 at his parents’ home, where he overheard them talking about going to Des Moines to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Maynard girls basketball team winning a state title in Iowa.

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KWWL – A movie is being made about this Iowa 6-on-6 girls’ basketball team

A movie about an Iowa high school state championship team, a tale of love and the impact of 6-on-6 girls’ basketball in the state during the 1950s is being made.

Angel Pizzo, the screenwriter for sports film classics like “Hoosiers” and “Rudy,” will write a screenplay about the Maynard High School girls’ basketball team winning a state title in 1956, eastern Iowa TV station KWWL reports. The school is now called West Central of Maynard.

The movie will be based on the 2013 book “Maynard 8 Miles” by Brian J. Borland.

“I loved Brian’s book and thought immediately that here was an opportunity to write a sports story from the female vantage point, something I’ve never done,” Pizzo said in a news release. “Very few people know how special girls’ basketball was in Iowa during the ’50s.”

The final state championship in six-player basketball was held in 1993, according to a previous Register story.

“Maynard 8 Miles” focuses on the basketball career and life of Maynard native Carolyn Nicholson, a leader on Maynard’s 1956 state title-winning team. Maynard defeated Garrison 62-51 in the championship, with Nicholson — a senior — scoring 25 points.

Borland is Nicholson’s son. Borland’s father, Glenn, played basketball at Oelwein High School (eight miles from Maynard) and went on to become a starter and captain of the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team.

“I always knew my dad played for the Badgers, but my mother was so modest that until I was in the 40s, I never knew she was a superstar and for awhile was the darling of an entire state,” Borland said in the release. “When I learned about that, I started researching it, and what a story I uncovered.”

Nicholson was inducted into the Iowa Girls’ High School Athletic Union girls’ basketball hall of fame in 1971, the Cedar Rapids Gazette reports. She finished her Iowa prep basketball career with 3,079 points.

Nicholson died in 2009. Borland’s father passed away in 2016.

Bo Ryan, former head coach of Wisconsin, will co-produce the film with Borland. Ryan said he read the book in one sitting, KWWL reports.

“I couldn’t put it down,” Ryan said in the release. “I can’t wait for the movie.”

The film is planned to be produced in 2018, with a premiere likely happening in Iowa.

More information about the book and movie can be found at maynard8miles.com.

The Gazette – Heavy hitters involved in potential “Maynard 8 Miles” movie

It’s a sports story. It’s a love story. And it appears to be going to film.

Angelo Pizzo, the screenwriter for movies such as “Hoosiers” and “Rudy,” has signed on to write a movie script based on “Maynard 8 Miles,” a book written by Brian Borland about Iowa six-player girls’ basketball in the 1950s.

The book is based on the career of Borland’s mother, Carolyn Nicholson Borland, a six-on-six forward who led Maynard High School to the state championship in 1956.

“When I met with (Pizzo), I thought maybe he would spend five minutes with me,” said Borland, who lives in Verona, Wis. “But we really connected, and our first meeting lasted six hours.”

Now 53, Borland didn’t know his mother played basketball until he was in his 40s.

“Everybody knew who my dad (Glenn Borland) was, but mom never talked about her (high school) career,” Borland said.

Glenn Borland played basketball at Oelwein High School — 8 miles away from Maynard — and graduated there in 1954 before becoming a starter and captain for the Wisconsin Badgers.

 

 

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Radio Iowa – Book on 1956 Maynard state basketball champions could become a movie

A book that highlights the story of a championship Iowa girls six-on-six high school basketball team could become a Hollywood movie.

Brian Borland self-published the book, “Maynard 8 Miles,” in 2014 — just a few years after learning his mother was the star of Maynard’s 1956 title-winning team.

“I didn’t even find out about this until 2006 when there was the 50th year reunion of the Maynard team,” Borland said. “I overheard my mom and dad talking in the living room about, ‘hey, do you want to go to Des Moines? They’re celebrating the 50 year reunion of Maynard winning the state championship.’”

Borland’s mother, Carolyn Nicholson, scored 25 points as Maynard defeated Garrison 62-51 in the championship game. “I started doing research…and then, the story just got better and better,” Borland said. “This is unbelievable.”

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Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier: ‘Rudy’ writer to pen Iowa girls basketball movie

The man who wrote the screen plays for “Rudy” and “Hoosiers” is picking up the pen again to write an Iowa-based sports story.

Angelo Pizzo will write a movie based on the book “Maynard 8 Miles.” Brian J. Borland wrote the book, which tells the story of how the Maynard girls’ basketball team overcame all odds to win the state basketball championship in 1956.

The book’s author plans to produce the project next year. He’ll be joined by former University of Wisconsin-Madison head men’s basketball coach Bo Ryan in the project. Ryan has a keen interest in girls basketball.

The movie will likely premiere in Iowa.

WXOW – Rudy, Hoosiers, writer to create screenplay on Iowa girls’ basketball team

Screenwriter Angelo Pizzo had great success with the 1986 basketball movie, Hoosiers.

Then, another success with the 1993 movie, Rudy, the underdog story of Notre Dame football walk on, Dan Ruettiger.

That almost didn’t happen, as Ruettiger said he had to talk Pizzo into writing the screenplay for Rudy, after Pizzo reportedly said he would never do another sports story.

Now, PIzzo is embarking on yet another sports story, and an Iowa farm family and an Iowa girls high school basketball team will be the stars.

Angelo Pizzo will write a screenplay about the 1956 season, which saw the Maynard High School girls win the State Championship, led by Carolyn Nicholson.

The movie will be based on the 2013 book, Maynard 8 Miles, by Brian J. Borland, which highlights an Iowa farm family and the immense impact of 6 on 6 girls basketball in Iowa in the 1950’s.

In a press release, Angelo Pizzo said, “I loved Brian’s book and thought immediately that here was an opportunity to write a sports story from the female vantage point, something I’ve never done.”

Pizzo added, “Very few people know how special girls’ basketball was in Iowa during the ’50s. This book captures that uniqueness in a heartfelt and triumphant way.”

Borland’s book features the remarkable basketball career of Maynard native Carolyn Nicholson Borland, one of four sisters raised on a farm who overcame all odds to win the state girls’ basketball championship in 1956.  In those days, there was just one class for the entire state in Iowa High School Girls Basketball.

That 1956 Maynard state championship team was coached by Mel Kupferschmid, whom would later live in the Waterloo-Cedar Falls area for many years.

From Maynard, Mel went on to become the first coach in Iowa to win state championships in 6 on 6 and later, in 5 on 5 girls basketball.

Kupferschmid, whom died in 2013, won three state titles as an Iowa girls high school basketball head coach.

His Maynard teams won state championships in 1956 and 1958.  (Maynard finished as runner up in 1957)  His 1959 team won 58 straight games, but lost in the 1959 title game.

Kupferschmid would later coach at Waterloo Columbus High School, also winning a state championship for the Sailors.

Maynard 8 Miles author, Brian Borland, had a special, personal interest in writing Maynard 8 Miles.

Borland says, “The book tells of Carolyn’s exceptional talent and scoring records, how she led her Maynard High team to overcome huge obstacles and win a state championship, and how she changed the game of six-on-six forever,” Borland said. “It’s also a love story. I always knew my dad played for the Badgers, but my mother was so modest that until I was in the 40s, I never knew she was a superstar and for awhile was the darling of an entire state. When I learned about that, I started researching it, and what a story I uncovered.”

The story also includes the career of Carolyn’s husband, Glenn Borland, who played basketball at Oelwein High, eight miles from Maynard. After graduation, he went on to be a starter and captain of the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team.

Former Wisconsin Head Coach, Bo Ryan, will co-produce the movie with Brian Borland.

Ryan, who retired in 2015 shortly after leading his Wisconsin team to two consecutive Final Four appearances in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, has a keen interest in girls’ basketball, even conducting seminars and basketball camps for girls in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

“The story is better than ‘Hoosiers’,” Ryan said. “It’s a tremendous human-interest story featuring great life lessons told through exciting basketball action. I read the book in one sitting. I couldn’t put it down. I can’t wait for the movie.”

Borland and Ryan plan to produce the project in 2018, with it likely premiering in Iowa.

More information about the book and the project can be found at Maynard8miles.com.

Maynard 8 Miles by Brian J. Borland is available on Amazon.com

KCRG – Movie about Iowa girls’ basketball to be made

MADISON, Wis. (KCRG-TV9) – Angelo Pizzo, the screenwriter for the Indiana basketball movie “Hoosiers” and Notre Dame Football movie “Rudy,” has agreed to write a movie script based on the book “Maynard 8 Miles”. The book, by Brian J. Borland, is about Iowa girls’ basketball in the 1950s.

The book follows the basketball career of Carolyn Borland and her sisters winning the state girls’ basketball championship 1956 against all odds.

The book’s author and the former Badgers Head Coach Bo Ryan will co-produce the movie in 2018, likely premiering in Iowa.

More information about the book and the movie can be found at  Maynard8miles.com.

Wisconsin State Journal – Doug Moe: Life, love and basketball

The real story here is that there was almost no story. Glenn and Carolyn Borland were of an era that did not encourage boasting. Even their kids didn’t know the half of it.
“They just didn’t talk about it,” Brian Borland was saying last week.

On a January day in 2006, Brian was visiting his parents at their home in Madison and overheard them discussing an invitation to return to Iowa, where they had grown up in small towns eight miles apart.

The invite had to do with a reunion of Carolyn’s 1956 high school girls basketball team. Carolyn’s school was in Maynard, population 458.

She asked Brian if he wanted to go with them to the reunion, which would be in Des Moines, site of the high school state tournament.

Brian went to the reunion. What he saw there, what he learned about his mother, astonished him. It set Brian on a course to learn more, which he did, about his parents, and about the phenomenon that was high school girls basketball in the state of Iowa.

At some point, Brian decided it was a story that needed to be preserved. He’s written a book, “Maynard 8 Miles,” just published, that counts among its early admirers Jim Doyle, the former Wisconsin governor. Doyle played basketball for a school team coached by Glenn Borland, and he knew Carolyn, too.

“This is the story they were too modest to tell,” Doyle writes in a foreword to “Maynard 8 Miles.”

It’s a love story and a basketball story, but it begins at a summer softball game. Glenn was 18 and about to head to the University of Wisconsin on a basketball scholarship. Carolyn Nicholson was 16 and getting ready for her senior year of high school. As star athletes, each had heard of the other — Glenn lived eight miles from Maynard, in Oelwein — but they weren’t introduced until the softball game that summer. Before long, they were dating, and married in 1957, when Carolyn joined Glenn in Madison.

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