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.
Story by Aaron Young, Courtesy of The Des Moines Register.