Ahmad Rashad

Ahmad RashadEmmy® Award-winning sportscaster Ahmad Rashad is the host of a series of NBA TV specials, “One on One with Ahmad Rashad”.  The show features Rashad’s candid and in-depth interviews with the NBA’s biggest stars, providing viewers with unique insights into the players’ careers and personal stories, and gaining their perspective about life on and off the court. Ahmad can also be seen daily as host of The Golf Channel’s morning show, “Morning Drive.”

Rashad, a former college All-American and All-Pro football star who was enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame in 2007, was host, executive producer and managing editor of the Emmy-nominated show NBA Inside Stuff for 16 seasons.  He has also been part of the ESPN/ABC NBA team, providing lifestyle features and essays. Rashad was co-host for ABC Sports’ NBA halftime show and the network’s Finals pregame show in 2004 and 2005.  Rashad’s work has appeared on ESPN’s SportsCenter, NBA 2Night, NBA FastBreak and other studio programming.  In 2003, he served as host for ABC’s top-rated reality shows, Celebrity Mole Hawaii and Celebrity Mole Yucatan.

Prior to his current duties, Rashad worked with NBC Sports.  In 20 years with NBC, he was one of the network’s most visible and versatile sportscasters.  He joined the network as an NFL commentator and host for NBC’s Sports World in 1983.  He soon extended his duties to include studio hosting, feature reporting, analysis and commentary for a variety of sports and events. In 1991, Rashad served as host of Notre Dame Saturday and anchored NBC Sports Update.  He also lent his talents as a commentator for various SportsWorld telecasts. In 1994, he was named the studio pregame host of the NFL on NBC, including Super Bowl coverage. Rashad continued his hosting duties through the 1997-98 season and Super Bowl XXXII.  In 2001 and 2002 he served as the studio host for the NBA on NBC’s pregame and halftime shows. From the beginning of NBC’s coverage of the NBA in 1990, Rashad was a key contributor for the network as a courtside reporter, including work throughout the regular season, the All-Star Game, playoffs and Finals.

Rashad served as a studio host for NBC’s coverage of three Olympic Games: 1988 in Seoul, 1992 in Barcelona and 1996 in Atlanta, as well as the World Championships of Track and Field.  His work in Seoul documenting the Olympic experience earned him the most prestigious honor in the TV industry, an Emmy® award, in the category of writing.

In addition to his Emmy® win, Rashad has earned multiple Emmy® nominations, including Edited Sports Special/Executive Producer (Soul of the Game), Outstanding Sports Personality, Studio Host (NBA Inside Stuff), Outstanding Sports Special (NBA Stay in School Special), Outstanding Edited Sports Series, Outstanding Feature, Outstanding Sports Personality Analyst (Commentary)/NBC and Outstanding Sports Personality/NBC.

Rashad also has served as the host of the nationally syndicated shows Real TV and Entertainment Tonight (ET), as well as Later on NBC and the game show, Caesar’s Challenge.

The top running back and top receiver in the 1972 NFL draft – one of a select few players in NFL history to achieve that distinction – Rashad was selected fourth overall by the St. Louis Cardinals and made the league’s All-Rookie team at wide receiver.  During a brilliant 10-year career, he was recognized as one of the most electrifying players during his era while playing for the Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, and Minnesota Vikings.  As a member of the Vikings, he earned four Pro Bowl selections, capturing Pro Bowl MVP honors in 1979. A cornerstone of head coach Bud Grant’s teams, which won five division championships and the 1976 NFC title, Rashad played in Super Bowl XI.  Selected to both the Vikings All-Time 25th Anniversary Team and their 40th Anniversary Team, he finished his playing career ranked 11th on the NFL’s all-time receiving list with 495 receptions, and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in Minnesota Vikings history.

A two-time All-America and three-time All-Conference selection, Rashad starred for the University of Oregon at running back and wide receiver from 1969-71.  The only player to lead the Pac-8/Pac 10 Conference in scoring from two different positions, Rashad established 14 Oregon records during his collegiate career, including marks for rushing in a game (249), season (1,211) and career (2,306), as well as for receptions in a season (54) and career (131).  He was named an honorary captain for Oregon at the 2011 BCS National Championship Game, representing his alma mater during the coin toss before the kickoff against Auburn.

In 1995, he became the first athlete to win the University of Oregon’s Pioneer Award, the highest honor given to an alumnus.  Awarded annually, the Pioneer Award is given to a person whose character places him/her in a position of leadership.  It is designed for an individual who has taken risks.  The award was created in 1979 and has been presented to individuals who lead their communities, states, and the nation in business, philanthropy, communications, government, education, or the arts.  Previous winners include former Senator Mark Hatfield, best-selling novelist Ken Kesey, and Nike founder Phil Knight.  Rashad serves on the Board of Trustees for the University and holds an honorary degree of Doctor of Journalism from the University of Puget Sound.  He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Schwartzberg Companies.

Rashad has worked tirelessly on behalf of causes to benefit the community, devoting his time and energy to many charitable endeavors.  An alumnus of the Boys and Girls Clubs, he has played a leading role in efforts to assist the organization, including the Ahmad Rashad Passport to Manhood Program, which helps youngsters deal with the challenges of their adolescent years.  He also created the Ahmad Rashad Celebrity Classic, an annual golf tournament raising money to benefit White Plains Hospital Center, which provides essential health care services to thousands of families in Westchester County.  His extensive charitable activities have also included numerous USO visits to troops all over the world, along with efforts on behalf of the Mental Health Association, the Alzheimer’s Association, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Robin Hood, the Brain Tumor Society, Have a Chance, NBA Cares, chairing the Special Olympics and the Frito Lay Challenge for Children.

Rashad was recognized for his efforts with the Minnesota Vikings NFL Man of the Year Award, and has been the recipient of numerous other prestigious honors, including the Whitney Young Award, the Eddie Robinson Award for Lifetime Achievement, and the Award of Courage, bestowed by the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.  In 2009, Rashad was named the Man of the Year by the New York Athletic Club.  He donated his $10,000 prize for winning the award to the Boys & Girls Club of Hartford Ahmad Rashad Passport to Manhood Program.