The name Mark Titus might not ring a bell to anybody but an avid Ohio State fan, but it should. Titus was a four year walk-on for the Ohio State Buckeyes men’s basketball team, and decided to chronicle his time in Columbus while riding the pine pony for four straight years.
Don’t Put Me In, Coach tells the story of Titus’s “Incredible journey from the end of the bench to the end of the bench” in true comedic fashion. The humor in Titus’s writing meshes with the rolling-on-the-floor-hysterical stories he tells as he relives his time as a Buckeye.
As your read the book, Titus takes you on a journey beginning with him meeting Greg Oden, Mike Conley and his other AAU teammates through his career at Ohio State and ends with his emotional senior day.
From the endless ripping of “The State Up North” (The University of Michigan) to his countless stories of trying to (and successfully) getting under teammate Evan “The Villain” Turner’s skin, Titus shows the ins-and-outs of a major Ohio State program from the end of the bench. From “the best seat in the house” Titus chronicles his life and interactions he had with teammates and coaches while wearing the scarlet and grey.
Titus shares his emotions in the book, talking about how much it meant to play with longtime friends Conley and Oden in a National Championship, not to mention the support he received three years later from the Ohio State student body on his senior night.
The best part of the book, shockingly, might not even be one of the chapters. Believe it or not, I laughed the hardest at some of the captions to the pictures section of the book. Titus went as far as describing himself as “an enormous vagina” in the eyes of his father on his senior night. You won’t see that in any other book, that’s for sure!
On a serious note, Titus showed what it’s like to be a jokester-slash-benchwarmer on a major Division I team. He provides good basketball insight on some big games, while making a mockery of the entire thing at the same time.
I could go off and quote passages, and tell you the specific jokes, but that would spoil a truly interesting and hilarious read. So instead, I’m going to say go pick up a copy. Whether you love or hate Ohio State, you’re guaranteed to love Don’t Put Me In, Coach (If you’re into funny books about sports that poke fun at now-popular sports figures and their Nerf guns).