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All Around Sports

All Around Sports
Radio Show Host

Please CLICK HERE to listen to John Ingoldsby’s All Around Sports radio show every Friday at 1 p.m. ET.

John Ingoldsby covering the first-ever College Football Playoff National Championship game in Dallas.

John Ingoldsby stands beside his press box seat while covering the first-ever College Football Playoff National Championship game in Dallas, where Ohio State beat Oregon.

IIR Sports Memberships

• Football Writers Association of
  America (FWAA)

• Professional Football Writers of
   America (PFWA)

• National Football Foundation
  (NFF), Board of Directors

• The Gridiron Club of
  Greater Boston

• Golf Travel Writers
  of America (GTWA)

WCTV Sports Forum Reporter/Color Analyst

IIR Sports Inc. President John Ingoldsby is a long-time correspondent for WCTV in Boston, serving as an in-studio and call-in guest on the station's Sports Forum show, while also contributing as a Color Analyst on college basketball broadcasts and sideline/post-game interviewer for football games.

Army Navy Game

Army Navy Game

March-On for Midshipmen & Cadets Kicks Off Army-Navy Game

By John Ingoldsby
December 10, 2012

My first Army-Navy game began bright and early when I arrived at Philadelphia's Lincoln Financial Field four hours before kickoff, where I settled into my Press Box seat before walking down to the field level for the traditional March-On. As pictured above, each and every Midshipmen from the Naval Academy and Cadet from West Point march in precision onto the field with accompanying announcements identifying each unit with its leaders and hometowns. After starting the day with this pageantry, the USMA and USNA students then settle into their seats in the stadium corners at the same end awaiting the next spectacle of the Invocation, National Anthem, the two teams taking the field, and the coin toss with Vice President Joe Biden. In the meantime, the stadium fills with soldiers and sailors in every conceivable uniform towards its traditional sellout, as the buzz builds to a fever pitch unmatched in American sports. Then, as daylight turned toward darkness, the purest game of all began as the two institutions battled for the first time in years to take the Commander-In-Chief's Trophy, awarded yearly (including Air Force) to the winning service academy in football. With the annual backdrop of almost every senior playing their last football game ever, the game went down to the final minute when Army fumbled in the red zone while driving for the potential winning score, and Navy pounced on the loose ball to win their 11th straight game over Army, the longest winning streak in the 113-year series.

John Ingoldsby and Jim Nantz

IIR Sports & Entertainment President John Ingoldsby (above, left) talks with Jim Nantz of CBS Sports at a Great Fenway Park Writers Series luncheon during the broadcaster's first visit to Fenway Park, where they discussed John's first visit to Augusta National for the 2009 Masters (below).

Robert Parish

John Ingoldsby talks with NBA Hall of Famer Robert Parish, for whom John has obtained frequent appearances on Turner Sports Network's NBA coverage.

IIR Supports

The Sports Section

photo of John Ingoldsby

To read John Ingoldsby's coverage of the 2014 Football University National Championships in Naples, Florida
click here.

John Ingoldsby at NFL Player Engagement's

John Ingoldsby sits on the set of NFL Player Engagement's "PE TV" during Super Bowl Week.

To view John Ingoldsby's page on nflplayerengagement.com, click here.

John Ingoldsby is a veteran sports journalist who covers the NFL for a variety of print and broadcast media, and has the unique distinction covering two NFL dynasties, the current New England Patriots and the "Steel Curtain Era" Pittsburgh Steelers. He has also written articles on the NFL for Bloomberg BusinessWeek magazine (NFL Player Engagement) and London-based Financial Times newspaper (NFL's international strategy).

Other media outlets John's articles have appeared in are the Philadelphia Daily News (annual NFC Coaches Breakfast), Boston Globe (Interviewed Seattle Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll), and Patriots Insider (in affiliation with SCOUT.COM and Fox Sports), which followed a decade of working as a newspaper reporter and editor.

Sports Events Covered by John Ingoldsby

In addition to writing hundreds of articles for the National Football League's (NFL) Player Engagement department the past two years, as well as conducting dozens of interviews for articles in Armchair General Magazine the past nine years, John Ingoldsby has also covered and/or worked at some of the premier events in sports in recent years, including:

  • First-ever College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship in Dallas (2015)

  • American Athletic Conference Men's & Women's Basketball Championships (2015)

  • American Athletic Conference Football Media Days in Newport, RI (2014-2014)

  • Belmont Stakes & Saratoga Horse Races (2014)

  • U.S. Open Golf at Merion (2013)

  • Army-Navy Football Game in Philadelphia (2013)

  • Football University National Championship (2011-Present)

  • U.S. Army All-American Bowl (2011-2013)

  • NCAA March Madness Eastern Regional Boston (2013)

  • NFL Super Bowl Weeks & Radio Row, Drafts, Owners Meetings

  • NFL Rooke Symposium (2014), Broadcast Boot Camps (2012 & 2008)

  • New England Patriots News Conferences & Training Camps (2006-2012)

  • U.S. Men's & Women's National Soccer Matches (2011-Present)

  • Masters Golf in Augusta (2009)

  • Deutsche Bank Golf Tournament (2011-Present)
  • Travelers Golf Championship (2011-Present)

  • U.S. Amateur Golf Championship (2014)

  • Boston Celtics-Miami Heat Eastern Conference Finals (2012)

  • Boston Bruins Postseason in Stanley Cup Season (2011)

  • UConn-Michigan Football Game (2013)

  • WNBA's Connecticut Sun (2011-Present)

  • WNBA All-Star Game (2013) & WNBA Draft (2014)

  • NCAA Lacrosse Final Four at Gillette Stadium (2011)

  • Major League Lacrosse All-Star Game at Harvard Stadium (2012)

  • Tom Brady's Best Buddies Challenge Touch Football Game at Harvard Stadium (2014)

  • Matt Light Celebrity Shootouts

  • Jarod Mayo Bowls

  • Ty Law Patriots Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (2014)

  • Ivy League Sports Symposium (2013)

  • Boston Militia Women's Professional Football

  • Major League Lacrosse All-Star Game (2012)

One-on-One Interviews for Armchair General Magazine (Click Here to see Articles)

  • Coach Mike Krzyzewski
  • Coach Bill Parcells
  • Coach Bob Knight
  • Roger Staubach
  • Rocky Bleier
  • Pete Dawkins
  • Joe Bellino

Rocky Bleier Is Still Making Fellow Veterans His Mission

By JOHN INGOLDSBY | Engagement Insider

November 2, 2014

Rocky Bleier Photo

(AP Photo/Ed Rieker)

As the NFL kicks off its annual Salute To Service campaign again this November, one of their most decorated veterans continues to carry on its mission of serving those who have served.

Which for Pittsburgh Steelers Legend Rocky Bleier means working tirelessly with military veterans' organizations to ensure that fellow former soldiers transition successfully into civilian life.

And although he has done this for decades, the biggest effort may now just be beginning for Bleier, the former Army infantryman who overcame war wounds from Vietnam to become a four-time Super Bowl champion with the iconic Pittsburgh Steelers of the 1970s.

"With the downsizing of the military from current conflicts abroad, there are approximately 300,000 troops who will soon become civilians," said the famous author of "Fighting Back," which was later made into a movie.

But for many returning soldiers, there is no Hollywood ending, only physical and psychological scars. But that's where Bleier and the organizations he works with can help veterans be aware of how to access all the services available to them.

"I have a lot going on these days, working work with groups like "Warrior2Citizen" and "Unite Us," the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum in Pittsburgh, and being an Honorary Director of the Boulder Crest Retreat," noted the 1968 Notre Dame graduate.

"For Veterans Day, I will be meeting in Atlanta with Warrior2Citizen, which helps veterans handle the challenges of transitioning from the war front to the home front," said Bleier, who explained that the organization helps, for instance, married couples who may be dealing with the psychological and moral aspects of war.

"It started with the Georgia National Guard, where measurable results showed divorce rates cut in half and suicides drop to zero, and it is now open to all branches of the military," he exclaimed.

Bleier attributes the success of this program to technology, where 24-7 all veterans can go to a computer and within minutes be online with counselors, even face-to-face, to draw support and discuss issues they are facing.

"The soldiers of today are tied to technology," observed Bleier, who stressed that the ultimate aim of the Warrior2Citizen (www.warrior2citizen.org)" is to make veterans productive citizens.

Another association that the Pittsburgh resident is involved in is "Unite Us" (www.uniteus.com), which connects veterans, service members, and their families with valuable resources and supporters in their local communities.

"As an example, Western Pennsylvania has the second largest veteran population outside of a military base, so we just kicked off this effort which serves as a resource for our veterans," stated Bleier.

The Wisconsin native also mentioned that "Unite Us," is teamed up with the Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University (www.vets.syr.edu), which focuses on the social, economic, education and policy issues impacting veterans and their families post-service.

But that's not all for the busy Bleier, who noted that on November 15 he will attend the Cannon Ball Gala at the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum in Pittsburgh (www.soldiersandsailorshall.org), the nation's only military museum dedicated to honoring the men and women of all branches of service, and in all capacities (Active, Reserve, Guard).

"The museum is a great tribute to military history, and I am proud to be associated with it," said Bleier.

An additional association he takes pride in is Boulder Crest Retreat in Bluemont, Virginia (www.bouldercrestretreat.org), a rural sanctuary where military warriors with combat-stress related injuries can bring their families and enjoy non-clinical, recreational therapeutic activities aimed at assisting with their physical, mental, financial and spiritual recovery.

"I was named to the Honorary Advisory Board last year, which was an honor for me since I support Ken Falke, who started by inviting soldiers from Walter Reed Hospital back to his house in Virginia, and later donated land to his foundation to have a retreat where soldiers and their family could have a place to go and enjoy an outdoor experience."

An experience like so many that Bleier believes will benefit veterans so they can find successful post-service careers, just like Bleier himself, who has two businesses.

"I own a construction company, where I sometimes work with the federal government and Veterans Administration, and I also have an insurance agency with my son, where I help people transitioning into retirement with areas like social security and 401Ks," he said.

But no matter what the age, Bleier believes a successful transition stems from utilizing available resources, and pointed out the current correlation that resonates with his famous life story.

"I am always struck by the similarities of NFL players and military veterans, since so often they both complete their first career in their twenties," the former Steelers players' representative observed. "But fortunately for them, they both have resources second to none available to them for a successful transition, so I would tell the players what I tell the veterans, which is to take advantage of all that the NFL, like the government, has to offer."

And although the NFL offers exponentially more resources off the field than when Bleier retired from the game, he made his mark on the field like no other, beginning 40 years ago when he fulfilled his football dream by becoming the starting halfback in the Steelers backfield.

"In 1974, there was a strike so there weren't as many players as usual in camp, and there were only four other running backs on the roster, so with injuries and other circumstances I began to get some playing time early in the season," recalled Bleier. "Through some mixing and matching, I had a couple of good games and then finally on a Monday night in Atlanta, Franco Harris and I started together and I became his blocking back."

But he ultimately became Franco's running mate as well when they won the first of their four Super Bowl together that year, and in 1976 they became only the second set of teammates to each rush for 1,000 yards in the same season.

And as the dynasty unfolded, Bleier forever shed the label as just a blocking back by rushing for nearly 4,000 career yards, including a career-high 70-yard jaunt.

Then, he picked the biggest moment of them all to display his genuine athleticism in making the signature play of his career by jumping high to snare the winning touchdown in Super Bowl XIII.

That leaping catch was captured forever on the cover of Sports Illustrated, serving as a fitting tribute to a soldier wounded in the 1960s who still serves his fellow veterans nearly five decades later.

To read this story on the NFL Player Engagement website click here.

John Ingoldsby writes about NFL Player Engagement
in Bloomberg Businessweek Special Advertising Section

John Ingoldsby NFL Player Engagement article from Bloomberg

Read Full Article (PDF)

John Ingoldsby Featured
in College Alumni Magazine


Fall 2012
St. Francis Magazine

John Ingoldsby St. Francis Magazine article

Read Full Article (PDF)

49ers Owner Greets Military Before Patriots Game


December 17, 2012
Armchair General Magazine

Dr. John York photo by John Ingoldsby

December 16, 2012. San Francisco 49ers Owner Dr. John York, right, greets members of the military before the New England Patriots Sunday night game, presenting a Niners pin to one soldier on the field at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro. Dr. York is the Chairman of the NFL's Health & Safety Committee, which includes the joint study now under way between the NFL and the U.S. Army to study Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI), story below. Dr. York has been conducting this pre-game of greeting 49ers fans and giving them pins and Field Passes for the past eight years. (Photo by John Ingoldsby)

NFL & Army teaming up to tackle Traumatic Brain Injuries


September 7, 2012
Armchair General Magazine

West Point Panel photo by John Ingoldsby

NFL & Army Stage Panel at West Point. The West Point panel included, from left: Dr Richard Ellenbogen, Major Sarah Goldman, Bart Oates, General Raymond Odierno, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, Major Christopher Molino, Troy Vincent, and Staff Sergeant Shawn Hibbard. (Photo by John Ingoldsby)

WEST POINT, NY, Sept. 7, 2012 – The National Football League and the U.S. Army have shared a storied history of working together, and now have formed perhaps their most important alliance ever in teaming up to tackle Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI).

The two iconic institutions chose the hallowed grounds of the United State Military Academy at West Point for the announcement, which included a panel discussion on this timely topic before an audience that included 200 Cadets.

The event was kicked off by Army Chief of Staff General Raymond T. Odierno and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who both stressed the complete collaboration they envision to implement a culture change to reduce brain injuries, including most importantly concussions.

Photo of General Raymond Odierno, U.S. Army Chief of Staff, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell

General Raymond Odierno (left), U.S. Army Chief of Staff, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell hold an outdoors press conference at West Point following a panel discussion regarding their new alliance to study Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs). (Photo by John Ingoldsby)

By emphasizing the importance of shared responsibility, self-regulation and peer pressure in battling this issue, the General and the Commissioner spearheaded a candid conversation by a star-studded panel that advocates players and soldiers seek help for a head injury to either themselves or those around them.

This call for healthy behaviors was echoed by the panel that included former players Troy Vincent and Bart Oates, Neurologist Dr. Richard Ellenbogen, a Co-Chair of the NFL's Head, Neck & Spine Committee, and Major Sarah Goldman, Major Christopher Molino, and Staff Sergeant Shawn Hibbard, all of whom contributed their perspective from the trenches.

In launching this initiative, both organizations created the websites www.NFL.com/military and www.army.mil/tbi, while also pledging to hold forums at NFL team facilities and Army bases, increasing awareness through PSAs and social media, pairing retired players with soldiers transitioning out of the Army, and sharing medical research and information.

John Ingoldsby, a leading writer on the intersection of sports and the military who attended this event, is president of IIR Sports, Inc. (www.IIRsports.com) in Boston, a media & public relations firm. As a former newspaper reporter covering Fort Devens, he was the first New England media representative ever chosen by the Pentagon to cover NATO war games in Europe. His father was a Lieutenant Colonel in General Patton's legendary Third Army during World War II.

IIR Sports conducts PR & Media activities at U.S. Army All-American Bowl

John Ingoldsby at U.S. Army All-American Bowl

IIR Sports Inc. President John Ingoldsby, stands on the San Antonio Alamodome field immediately following The U.S. Army All-American Bowl, where he worked all week for the Bowl organizers conducting a variety of public relations and media activities for the renowned high school all-star game.

John Ingoldsby Covers Deutsche Bank Championships

Public Relations Society of America

John Ingoldsby was on the 18th green to take these photos of PGA Golfer Rory McElroy, left, displaying the 2012 Deutsche Bank Championship trophy, after defeating, among others, Tiger Woods, center. In photo at right, Webb Simpson accepts trophy from Seth Waugh, CEO of Deutsche Bank Americas, moments after he won a sudden death playoff to win 2011 Deutsche Bank Championship. (Photos by John Ingoldsby)

United Way

John Ingoldsby, left, attended a United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley event during the NFL Fall Meeting in Boston, that also included NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Myra Kraft, second from right.

The sport with a game-plan for tackling the recession

As the NFL prepares to play its third regular season game in the UK, John Ingoldsby
reports on American football's moves to expand its fan base and revenues.


October 22, 2009
The Financial Times

At last week’s National Football League owners meeting in Boston, one of the regular gatherings of the high-powered executives who run the league and its 32 teams, the agenda included adding games to the schedule, whether to include sponsors’ logos on practice kit and plans for a new collective bargaining agreement with players.

But underlying all this, the mood was bullish. One of the biggest businesses in sport, announced Roger Goodell, league commissioner, was bucking the economic recession.

“We started the session this morning as we traditionally do with a report on the status of the season, and we had a very upbeat report, not only on the quality of the games but also with fan engagement,” he says.

Ratings for all four of the networks that televise NFL games – CBS, NBC, Fox and ESPN – have increased from last year, and the viewership records have been set in three of this season’s first five weeks, with the most watched Sunday night game ever on September 20 between the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys on NBC.

The league has also in the past few months showed it is surviving a weak sponsorship market by signing a new deal with Proctor & Gamble, while renewing long-standing agreements with Visa and IBM.

But as the New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers get set to play each other at London’s Wembley Stadium on Sunday, the third regular season game to be played there in as many years, Mr Goodell appears convinced that the health of the sport will benefit from global expansion.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell speaks during NFL Fall Meeting in Boston. (Photo by John Ingoldsby)

“The progress we are making internationally, in particular our efforts in the UK, show that the fans have really responded,” he says. “The fans in the UK look like they could have a second game, and we are looking as early as next year. It could be Wembley, or it could also be some place else in the UK, and we have talked about other spots in Europe also.”

Steve Tisch, owner of the New York Giants, a team that played in the inaugural London game two years ago, is an enthusiastic supporter of the commissioner’s strategy. “The way Roger has set it up with the London games is a great start, and the experiences over there have been terrific.”

For a domestic league with revenues of $8bn (€5.3bn, £4.8bn) that culminates in the Super Bowl, one of the marketing world’s marquee events – in the midst of the global recession, 30-second ads for last February’s game cost an average of $3m, up from $2.7m the year before – it is perhaps a surprising strategy.

What is more, previous efforts to expand the sport abroad have been unsuccessful. NFL Europa, a Europe-based branch of the league which included teams in Germany and the Netherlands, closed in 2007, and the NFL turned instead to the current strategy of playing regular season games outside the US.

Still, Mr Goodell points to the more than 140m NFL fans outside the US and 120 broadcasters from 230 countries and territories that will carry NFL programming in 2009 as evidence of its continuing global appeal.

But he also recognises that “we are not played as broadly as some other sports, particularly soccer and basketball, but when people have the opportunity to see our game and be engaged, they love it and want more of it”.

In this respect, the National Basketball Association, another North American league that has pursued an international strategy in recent years, has been more successful. The sport is well established in Europe and, perhaps more significantly for the long term, in China. Last year, the league formed NBA China, an organisation designed to conduct all its operations there and it claims that NBA.com/china, its local website, is the single most popular sports website in the country.

For the time being, the NFL remains focused on expanding the business in Europe, but for the fans set to turn the home of English football into a home for its American version, the only numbers that count will be on the scoreboard.

A global pull: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (left) and New England Patriots will play in London on Sunday

A global pull: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (left) and New England Patriots will play in London on Sunday

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2009.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell takes global view after climbing corporate ladder to reach mountaintop


BOSTON, Massachusetts – NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has reached the mountaintop both literally and figuratively, and his view from the top is surely spectacular.

Professionally, after a 24-year career climbing the corporate ladder at the National Football League, Goodell reached the peak of his profession when he was elected Commissioner four years ago.

Personally, he trained rigorously to successfully scale the 14,411-foot summit of Mount Rainier 15 months ago as part of a group supporting United Way, an NFL partner for more than 35 years.

With the mountains behind him, the 51-year-old Commissioner is now crisscrossing the ocean with the “great American game of Football,” and London has become the league’s new world—one apparently worthy of further exploration.

Read Full Article

Q&A with NFL CMO Mark Waller


In October, 2009, during the NFL’s Fall Meeting in Boston just two weeks before the NFL’s International Game in London, Boston-based writer John Ingoldsby sat down with Mark Waller, the National Football League’s new and first-ever Chief Marketing Officer, for an exclusive interview.

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Mark Waller

Mark Waller makes a point during MIT Sports Analytics Conference. (Photo by John Ingoldsby)

NFL CMO Mark Waller Goes Global at MIT Conference


BOSTON, MA—The National Football League has already taken its game across the pond, and is now intending to “accelerate massively the education” aspect of American football worldwide.

This revelation, and many other components of the NFL’s commitment to growing its game globally, were put forth by NFL Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Mark Waller during the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston in March 2010.

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From intern to dream job: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell


June 1, 2010

LOWELL, Mass. – College graduates take note.

An internship can lead to arguably the greatest job in the world. Literally!

For it was an internship that was the first step undertaken by Roger Goodell nearly three decades ago that ultimately led to his current job as Commissioner of the National Football League (NFL).

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