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Merril Hoge

ESPN Football Analyst; Former Football Player & Cancer Survivor, Author of Find a Way and Brainwashed

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Merril Hoge Biography

Find. A. Way.

Merril Hoge has proven that those three, simple words can be the most powerful words in the English language. Hoge’s Find-A-Way philosophy helped him achieve his dream of becoming an NFL powerhouse and would later help him fight to live as he struggled to overcome cancer, open-heart surgery, and family tragedy.

As a speaker since 2005, Hoge has taken the stage to deliver his message to hundreds of associations corporate audiences, such as Highmark Insurance, Equifax, and Verizon Wireless. He uses the tenacity of that simple phrase to help people realize their gifts and uncover the tools they need to find their way.

Best-Selling Author

In 2018, with the national discussion on Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) at its peak, Hoge released Brainwashed: The Bad Science Behind CTE and the Plot to Destroy Football. He collaborated on the project with board-certified forensic neuropathologist, Dr. Peter Cummings, to take an unbiased look at the facts surrounding this misunderstood pattern. Together, they conducted a provocative examination of the science, as well as the hysteria around CTE and how it is being manipulated to serve an agenda.

Hoge’s first book, "Find a Way: Three Words That Changed My Life," was released in 2010. It is a moving memoir in which he shares the simple philosophy that guides him to this day and has enabled him to overcome obstacles throughout his life.

NFL Football: The dream

Merril Hoge graduated from Idaho State University in 1987. As a four-year starter, he held 11 of the school’s football records, including single-season and career marks for rushing attempts, rushing yards, and all-purpose yards. Hoge also scored 44 ISU touchdowns, a Big Sky Conference record, and still holds the record for the most receptions by an Idaho State running back (182).

After graduation, Hoge achieved his dream of playing in the NFL, starting a successful eight-year run with the Pittsburgh Steelers. As a Steeler (1987-1993), Hoge set the team record for most receptions by a running back (50 in 1988) and was one of only two Steelers to rush for more than 100 yards in back-to-back playoff games. After signing a three-year contract with the Chicago Bears, a series of concussions forced him into early retirement in 1995. By the end of his career, Hoge had played in 122 consecutive games, the longest streak in the NFL at that time.

Broadcasting: The Second Career

Always one to find a way, the former NFL running back has transformed himself into a successful analyst for ESPN for 21 years:

  • Appears regularly on NFL Matchup, the network’s longest running show

  • Host of Fantasy Football for the show’s launch

  • Routinely offers his analysis on shows like NFL Live and NFL PrimeTime

  • A regular guest on LIVE SportsCenter over many years

Hoge continues to provide analysis to ESPN’s annual Super Bowl and NFL Draft coverage and is a regular voice on ESPN Radio and ESPN.com. He also served as a game analyst and sideline reporter on ESPN2 for its college football coverage and made his way to the telecast booth to call games for the Arena Football League.

Overcoming Challenges: Creating Victories

In 2003, Hoge was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, which he fought – and beat – using the same resolve he demonstrated on the football field. He received the Chairman’s Advocacy Award from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in 2004 and 2008 for his outstanding participation in driving awareness for LLS and its mission.

His doctors told Hoge in the fall of 2015 that he was suffering from an enlarged aorta and would need to undergo open-heart surgery. That experience and the awareness he gained led to his on-going partnership with the American Heart Association in helping deliver their “Lifestyles for a Healthy Heart” message.

CTE: Common-Sense Advocacy

In the years since his career-ending head trauma, Hoge has championed concussion research, resisted the hysteria surrounding the disease, and become an informed advocate in the prevention and treatment of brain injuries.

  • 2009: Testified at a congressional hearing on football head injuries, challenging legislators to institute a head-trauma protocol for players ages 8-18

  • 2010: Appointed in 2010 to the NFL MTBI Committee, which initiates research and advises the NFL on best practices for concussion prevention and management

  • 2010: Named to the board of directors for USA Football, the sport’s national governing body on youth and amateur levels

  • 2011: Invited by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to serve on the NFL’s Return-to-Play Subcommittee which deals with head, neck, and spine cases

  • 2011: Met with senior officials at the Pentagon to discuss the military’s tough-guy culture and instilling the benefits of leaders suffering a concussive head injury to voluntarily remove themselves from a situation as the best course of action for the troops under their command

  • 2011: Participated in the NFL-USO Tour to Afghanistan with Matt Millen and Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz, visiting troops overseas

  • 2012: Helped launch Heads-up Football with USA Football

  • 2014: Became an active part of the USA Football Advisory Committee

Refocused Efforts: New Frontiers

To help bring the focus back to football, Hoge also worked with the NFL in developing its “Way to Play” program to celebrate athletes who play the game right. Throughout the season, the spotlight falls on players doing things well, with a weekly “Way to Play” winner who awards the $2,500 prize to their selected charity. Season winners receive the honor of being named to the Lott/Madden team during Pre-Superbowl week.

Hoge’s life-long love of the game also helped launch a new kind of league in 2018—Your Call Football. YCD blends football and app technology enabling fans to call the play in real time. As head coach, Hoge took his team Power to 4-0 in the league’s inaugural season.

Helping Others: The Goal

As a believer in helping your community, Hoge serves as Chairman and a member of the board of the Highmark Caring Foundation. The group helps grieving children, adolescents and the families who lost loved ones and is particularly meaningful to Hoge, who lost his mother when he was just 21 years old. There are currently four centers in Pennsylvania, in Erie, Harrisburg, and two in Pittsburgh.

With the Chuck Noll Hall of Fame Game for Life award, Hoge was instrumental in developing a program that recognizes the youth football community in each state. Since 2017, the program, together with business partners Dicks, Riddell, and USA Football, has awarded recipients over $150,000.

Hoge also joined forces with Hall of Famers John Madden and Ronnie Lott to help launch The NFL’s Way to Play program, spotlighting great ambassadors of the game. Each week throughout the season, one player is recognized for excellence in playing the game with skill and integrity and is awarded $2,500 to donate to any football program of his choice, along with a letter from the NFL commissioner.

Videos
Books
Brainwashed: The Bad Science Behind CTE and the Plot to Destroy Football

Brainwashed: The Bad Science Behind CTE and the Plot to Destroy Football

News
FAQs
  • HOW TO BOOK Merril Hoge?

    Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like Merril Hoge for both live and virtual events for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment. Fill out a booking request form for Merril Hoge, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for Merril Hoge or any other celebrity of your choice.
  • HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BOOK Merril Hoge?

    Booking fees for Merril Hoge, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. Pricing often varies between live and virtual events. Other factors that can affect speaker fees include the talent's schedule, market conditions, length of presentation, and the location of the event. The live and virtual event speaking fees listed on this website are intended to serve as a guideline only. In some cases, the actual quote may be above or below the stated range. For the most current fee to hire Merril Hoge, please fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak with an experienced booking agent.
  • WHO IS THE AGENT FOR Merril Hoge?

    All American Entertainment has successfully secured celebrity talent like Merril Hoge for clients worldwide for more than 15 years. As a full-service talent booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Merril Hoge for your next private or corporate function.
  • WHAT IS A FULL-SERVICE TALENT BOOKING AGENCY?

    All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent Merril Hoge or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for Merril Hoge or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.
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All American Entertainment (AAE) exclusively represents the interests of talent buyers, and does not claim to be the agency or management for any speaker or artist on this site. AAE is a talent booking agency for paid events only. We do not handle requests for donation of time or media requests for interviews, and cannot provide celebrity contact information.

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ESPN Football Analyst; Former Football Player & Cancer Survivor, Author of Find a Way and Brainwashed

Travels From:
Washington, DC, USA
Speaking Fee:

Merril Hoge Biography

Find. A. Way.

Merril Hoge has proven that those three, simple words can be the most powerful words in the English language. Hoge’s Find-A-Way philosophy helped him achieve his dream of becoming an NFL powerhouse and would later help him fight to live as he struggled to overcome cancer, open-heart surgery, and family tragedy.

As a speaker since 2005, Hoge has taken the stage to deliver his message to hundreds of associations corporate audiences, such as Highmark Insurance, Equifax, and Verizon Wireless. He uses the tenacity of that simple phrase to help people realize their gifts and uncover the tools they need to find their way.

Best-Selling Author

In 2018, with the national discussion on Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) at its peak, Hoge released Brainwashed: The Bad Science Behind CTE and the Plot to Destroy Football. He collaborated on the project with board-certified forensic neuropathologist, Dr. Peter Cummings, to take an unbiased look at the facts surrounding this misunderstood pattern. Together, they conducted a provocative examination of the science, as well as the hysteria around CTE and how it is being manipulated to serve an agenda.

Hoge’s first book, "Find a Way: Three Words That Changed My Life," was released in 2010. It is a moving memoir in which he shares the simple philosophy that guides him to this day and has enabled him to overcome obstacles throughout his life.

NFL Football: The dream

Merril Hoge graduated from Idaho State University in 1987. As a four-year starter, he held 11 of the school’s football records, including single-season and career marks for rushing attempts, rushing yards, and all-purpose yards. Hoge also scored 44 ISU touchdowns, a Big Sky Conference record, and still holds the record for the most receptions by an Idaho State running back (182).

After graduation, Hoge achieved his dream of playing in the NFL, starting a successful eight-year run with the Pittsburgh Steelers. As a Steeler (1987-1993), Hoge set the team record for most receptions by a running back (50 in 1988) and was one of only two Steelers to rush for more than 100 yards in back-to-back playoff games. After signing a three-year contract with the Chicago Bears, a series of concussions forced him into early retirement in 1995. By the end of his career, Hoge had played in 122 consecutive games, the longest streak in the NFL at that time.

Broadcasting: The Second Career

Always one to find a way, the former NFL running back has transformed himself into a successful analyst for ESPN for 21 years:

  • Appears regularly on NFL Matchup, the network’s longest running show

  • Host of Fantasy Football for the show’s launch

  • Routinely offers his analysis on shows like NFL Live and NFL PrimeTime

  • A regular guest on LIVE SportsCenter over many years

Hoge continues to provide analysis to ESPN’s annual Super Bowl and NFL Draft coverage and is a regular voice on ESPN Radio and ESPN.com. He also served as a game analyst and sideline reporter on ESPN2 for its college football coverage and made his way to the telecast booth to call games for the Arena Football League.

Overcoming Challenges: Creating Victories

In 2003, Hoge was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, which he fought – and beat – using the same resolve he demonstrated on the football field. He received the Chairman’s Advocacy Award from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in 2004 and 2008 for his outstanding participation in driving awareness for LLS and its mission.

His doctors told Hoge in the fall of 2015 that he was suffering from an enlarged aorta and would need to undergo open-heart surgery. That experience and the awareness he gained led to his on-going partnership with the American Heart Association in helping deliver their “Lifestyles for a Healthy Heart” message.

CTE: Common-Sense Advocacy

In the years since his career-ending head trauma, Hoge has championed concussion research, resisted the hysteria surrounding the disease, and become an informed advocate in the prevention and treatment of brain injuries.

  • 2009: Testified at a congressional hearing on football head injuries, challenging legislators to institute a head-trauma protocol for players ages 8-18

  • 2010: Appointed in 2010 to the NFL MTBI Committee, which initiates research and advises the NFL on best practices for concussion prevention and management

  • 2010: Named to the board of directors for USA Football, the sport’s national governing body on youth and amateur levels

  • 2011: Invited by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to serve on the NFL’s Return-to-Play Subcommittee which deals with head, neck, and spine cases

  • 2011: Met with senior officials at the Pentagon to discuss the military’s tough-guy culture and instilling the benefits of leaders suffering a concussive head injury to voluntarily remove themselves from a situation as the best course of action for the troops under their command

  • 2011: Participated in the NFL-USO Tour to Afghanistan with Matt Millen and Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz, visiting troops overseas

  • 2012: Helped launch Heads-up Football with USA Football

  • 2014: Became an active part of the USA Football Advisory Committee

Refocused Efforts: New Frontiers

To help bring the focus back to football, Hoge also worked with the NFL in developing its “Way to Play” program to celebrate athletes who play the game right. Throughout the season, the spotlight falls on players doing things well, with a weekly “Way to Play” winner who awards the $2,500 prize to their selected charity. Season winners receive the honor of being named to the Lott/Madden team during Pre-Superbowl week.

Hoge’s life-long love of the game also helped launch a new kind of league in 2018—Your Call Football. YCD blends football and app technology enabling fans to call the play in real time. As head coach, Hoge took his team Power to 4-0 in the league’s inaugural season.

Helping Others: The Goal

As a believer in helping your community, Hoge serves as Chairman and a member of the board of the Highmark Caring Foundation. The group helps grieving children, adolescents and the families who lost loved ones and is particularly meaningful to Hoge, who lost his mother when he was just 21 years old. There are currently four centers in Pennsylvania, in Erie, Harrisburg, and two in Pittsburgh.

With the Chuck Noll Hall of Fame Game for Life award, Hoge was instrumental in developing a program that recognizes the youth football community in each state. Since 2017, the program, together with business partners Dicks, Riddell, and USA Football, has awarded recipients over $150,000.

Hoge also joined forces with Hall of Famers John Madden and Ronnie Lott to help launch The NFL’s Way to Play program, spotlighting great ambassadors of the game. Each week throughout the season, one player is recognized for excellence in playing the game with skill and integrity and is awarded $2,500 to donate to any football program of his choice, along with a letter from the NFL commissioner.

Merril Hoge Videos

  • Merril Hoge Speaking - YouTube
    Oct 18, 2017 ... Merril Hoge - The First Moment Of Truth. ... Merril Hoge Speaking. Donny Brasco. Loading... Unsubscribe from Donny Brasco? Cancel
  • Merril Hoge Speaking Be Uncommon - YouTube
    Oct 17, 2017 ... Merril Hoge Speaking Be Uncommon. ... Merril Hoge On Roethlisberger: 'He's Going To Be An Amazing Story' - Duration: 6:23....
  • Merril Hoge Intro - 2016 WERC Conference - YouTube
    Apr 21, 2016 ... In spite of many obstacles—including concussions that prematurely ended his pro football career after eight seasons as running...

Merril Hoge Books

FAQs on booking Merril Hoge

  • How to book Merril Hoge?

    Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like Merril Hoge for both live and virtual events for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment. Fill out a booking request form for Merril Hoge, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for Merril Hoge or any other celebrity of your choice.
  • How much does it cost to book Merril Hoge?

    Booking fees for Merril Hoge, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. Pricing often varies between live and virtual events. Other factors that can affect speaker fees include the talent's schedule, market conditions, length of presentation, and the location of the event. The live and virtual event speaking fees listed on this website are intended to serve as a guideline only. In some cases, the actual quote may be above or below the stated range. For the most current fee to hire Merril Hoge, please fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak with an experienced booking agent.
  • Who is the agent for Merril Hoge?

    All American Entertainment has successfully secured celebrity talent like Merril Hoge for clients worldwide for more than 15 years. As a full-service talent booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Merril Hoge for your next private or corporate function.
  • What is a full-service talent booking agency?

    All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent Merril Hoge or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for Merril Hoge or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.

Merril Hoge is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics . The estimated speaking fee range to book Merril Hoge for your event is $10,000 - $20,000. Merril Hoge generally travels from Washington, DC, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Shannon Miller, Vince Papale, Scott Hamilton, Mike Ditka and David Boudia. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Merril Hoge for an upcoming live or virtual event.

Merril Hoge Speaker Videos

  • Merril Hoge Speaking - YouTube
    Oct 18, 2017 ... Merril Hoge - The First Moment Of Truth. ... Merril Hoge Speaking. Donny Brasco. Loading... Unsubscribe from Donny Brasco? Cancel
    Merril Hoge Speaking Be Uncommon - YouTube
    Oct 17, 2017 ... Merril Hoge Speaking Be Uncommon. ... Merril Hoge On Roethlisberger: 'He's Going To Be An Amazing Story' - Duration: 6:23. WTAE-TV ...
  • Merril Hoge Intro - 2016 WERC Conference - YouTube
    Apr 21, 2016 ... In spite of many obstacles—including concussions that prematurely ended his pro football career after eight seasons as running back with the ...
    Merril Hoge Motivational Speaking - YouTube
    Jun 26, 2011 ... As a speaker, Merril sets himself apart by sharing amusing anecdotes and exceptional motivational techniques from 8 years of playing ...

Merril Hoge News

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Speakers Similar to Merril Hoge

This website is a resource for event professionals and strives to provide the most comprehensive catalog of thought leaders and industry experts to consider for speaking engagements. A listing or profile on this website does not imply an agency affiliation or endorsement by the talent.

All American Entertainment (AAE) exclusively represents the interests of talent buyers, and does not claim to be the agency or management for any speaker or artist on this site. AAE is a talent booking agency for paid events only. We do not handle requests for donation of time or media requests for interviews, and cannot provide celebrity contact information.

If you are the talent, and wish to request removal from this catalog or report an issue with your profile, please click here.

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