A soon-to-be released book about John Thompson depicts the Georgetown basketball coach as a demanding, controversial leader who commands great loyalty from friends, associates and players while creating his share of critics among coaching rivals, the media and at least one former player.

The book, "Big Man on Campus," was written by Leonard Shapiro, television sports columnist and former sports editor of The Washington Post.

Shapiro, who covered Thompson when he was coaching high school basketball at St. Anthony's in Washington before taking over at Georgetown in 1972, did not receive cooperation or interviews from Thompson in preparing the book. Thompson is writing his own book with Ralph Wiley, a Sports Illustrated special contributor.

Some of the topics Shapiro writes about include Thompson's ability to generate significant revenue for himself and the university; the esteem in which he is held by many former players, in contrast to onetime star Craig Shelton's disappointment with the way he believes he has been treated by Thompson since leaving school; and Thompson's well-publicized feuds with some coaches, including Lefty Driesell (patched up) and his own high school mentor, Bob Dwyer.

Shapiro reports that Georgetown generates $1.5 million annually in ticket sales from its basketball program and millions of dollars in income from television. And Thompson, who last June rejected a $6 million package from the Denver Nuggets to become general manager, is the beneficiary of a generous share of the school's basketball earnings.

According to the book, Thompson earns more than $300,000 annually in salary and $200,000 as a representative of the Nike sporting goods company. In addition, he owns a home given him by Georgetown alumni worth about $350,000, and earns substantial money from speeches (his normal fee is $20,000), a summer basketball camp held annually at Georgetown and other endorsements.

The book reports that in 1982, when CBS and Turner Broadcasting were bidding to get the Hoyas and Patrick Ewing to move a date to play Virginia and Ralph Sampson, Turner's company offered $700,000 to each school compared with CBS's $635,000.

Russ Potts, the promoter of the game, "arranged to sweeten the deal for the Georgetown coach by having a soft-drink company pay him $50,000 to do a few clinics," according to the book. "No one at Georgetown or WTBS would ever say that perk swung the deal to WTBS, but it certainly had to be a factor."

Thompson, addressed about the reported transaction last week, did not comment. But Georgetown Athletic Director Frank Rienzo told Shapiro he was not aware of such an arrangement. "I don't think there's any connection between the clinics and Georgetown-Virginia in any way, shape or form," he said.

Potts said yesterday he made no such arrangement with Thompson to get the game, but did assist him some years later in a business deal with Coca-Cola. "I've known John Thompson for 20 years," he said. "I did it as a favor, and I'd do it again."

The book clearly shows that many of Thompson's former players (only a few of whom have not earned degrees since 1973) are fond of him and hold him in awe, even after they've been out of the program for years. Most, including Ewing, declined to be interviewed for the book. But several of his earlier players who talked under stipulation they not be identified said they were disappointed in how they were treated since leaving.

Shelton, a star center who completed his eligibility without a degree in 1980 and was a second-round draft choice of the Atlanta Hawks, was one who publicly stated his displeasure. After 1 1/2 seasons with the Hawks and six in Europe, Shelton left professional basketball and now works for a food store chain.

"I took good courses," Shelton said. "I just didn't graduate.

"Thompson's main concern is to keep his job and win. It's about money. The bottom line is the dollar, keep the job, keep it going. How can you be a father figure when you have the pressure to win?

"I just hope John Thompson knows that it was people like me who got him where he is today. I hope he appreciates that," Shelton said.

Retorted Derrick Jackson, an assistant pastor in Wheaton, Ill., whose senior season in 1977-78 was cut short because of a bleeding ulcer, "I consider {Thompson} a great man and a great friend."

Thompson's relationship with rival coaches is the same: some friendships, some feuds -- often lasting for decades.

Morgan Wootten, the DeMatha High School coach, hasn't had a relationship with Thompson since a summer league incident more than two decades ago. Nor has Thompson forgiven his Archbishop Carroll High School coach, Dwyer, for telling a high school player in the mid-'70s that Thompson was recruiting him only because he was white.

"Maybe I should not have said that," Dwyer told Shapiro. "Sometimes the truth hurts."

Of the racial mix in the Hoyas basketball program, which has been predominantly black, the Rev. Timothy Healy, former Georgetown president, said: "What John does is recruit kids who play in his system. Obviously, he is more comfortable with black kids. That would be my guess, and it doesn't surprise me. I'm not uncomfortable with the team. Basketball is a city game. . . . If Alonzo Mourning were white, John would have gone after him."

Bill Moore, a member of Georgetown's board of regents from Dallas, was quoted as saying: "No one has ever told John who to recruit. If the best players are mostly black, that's great. If they can play and they can graduate, I'm all for it. He's done a hell of a job."