Rick Wolff is a nationally-recognized expert in the field of sports psychology and sports parenting. Often quoted by the media about the issues that face today’s athletes, Wolff has written and lectured widely on the psychological pressures that accompany America’s passion for sports.
From 1995 to 2005, Wolff wrote hundreds of widely-acclaimed prescriptive columns on sports parenting that ran in Sports Illustrated. He also was the co-founder of the prestigious Center for Sports Parenting, the nation’s leading resource on sports parenting issues. In addition to his work in Sports Illustrated, Wolff’s by-line has also appeared in such well-known publications as The New York Times, Harvard Magazine, the Harvard Business Review, GQ, Hemispheres, Sesame Street Magazine, Child, Scholastic, Family Life, USA TODAY, Psychology Today, Readers Digest, and many others.
Wolff has authored or co-authored 18 books, including four in the sports parenting field. One of his most recent efforts is the highly-acclaimed, Parenting Young Athletes the Ripken Way (Gotham, 2006), which he co-authored with Cal Ripken, Jr. Wolff also penned The Sports Parenting Edge (Running Press, 2003), Coaching Kids for Dummies (IDG, 2000) and Good Sports: The Concerned Parents Guide to Competitive Sports (Dell, 1992).
Wolff’s most recent book is Harvard Boys: A Father’s and Son’s Adventures Playing Minor League Baseball (Skyhorse, 2007), which he co-authored with his son John, who graduated from Harvard and who played professional baseball in the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets’ organizations.
For the past 12 years, Wolff has hosted a weekly sports parenting program, “The Sports Edge”, on WFAN Radio in New York City. He’s been a featured expert on Oprah, ESPN, CNN, ABC’s “NightLine”, ABC’s “20/20”, The Today Show, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, Fox & Friends, Fox Business, CNBC, PBS, A&E, MSNBC, Court TV, Lifetime, SportsChannel, the Madison Square Garden Network, and dozens of other media outlets. He’s also won an Emmy Award for his on-air work at MSG. In 1997, Wolff co-hosted an original videotape program, Youth Sports, with Steve Young, the Hall of Fame quarterback from the San Francisco 49ers.
Wolff, a former professional baseball player in the Detroit Tigers’ organization, also served as the roving sports psychology coach in the Cleveland Indians organization from 1990-94. He’s worked with dozens of top professional and collegiate athletes, including players from the National Football League, the National Hockey League, and Major League Baseball. He also served as the head baseball coach at Mercy College (Dobbs Ferry, NY) from 1978-1985, when the Flyers were nationally-ranked in Division II (NCAA). He was inducted into the Mercy College Athletics Hall of Fame in 2008.
Wolff graduated magna cum laude in psychology from Harvard University. He received his master’s degree with high honors in psychology at Long Island University. He’s a longtime member of the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sports Psychology as well as the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Wolff and his wife, Trish, have three children — John, Alyssa, and Samantha — and reside in Armonk, NY.
About Doug Abrams
Douglas E. Abrams is a law professor at the University of Missouri and a nationally recognized youth sports expert. A youth hockey coach for more than 40 years, Prof. Abrams is a prolific author and lecturer on youth sports, including sportsmanship, character development, and community sports programs. He is also interviewed frequently on radio and television. Prof. Abrams recently wrote “Achieving Equal Opportunity in Youth Sports,” a blueprint for maintaining equitable sports programs for all children. It appears as a chapter in the book, “Learning Culture Through Sports” (Rowman & Littlefield 2010).
As a varsity hockey goalie at Wesleyan University, Prof. Abrams set an Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III record for most saves in a game (64) and was the first Wesleyan hockey player named to the weekly ECAC All-East team. For more than 40 years, he has coached youth hockey teams at all age levels, and has been a goalie coach at camps and clinics. He now writes and speaks about sportsmanship, character development, and equal opportunity for children who wish to play in community sports programs.
In 1990, Prof. Abrams created the first organized youth hockey teams in mid-Missouri. During his eleven-year tenure as president of the mid-Missouri youth hockey program, the program grew from nineteen players to 180, while enrolling every interested child, encouraging beginners, fully involving each player in every practice and game, and stressing citizenship education through community service projects that the players selected and performed.
Over the years, his teams collected toys and stuffed animals for the University of Missouri Children’s Hospital, collected new and used backpacks for abused and neglected children in the local family court, collected cans of food for mid-Missouri food banks that serve needy families, and conducted children’s book drives for county health department clinics. For their charitable initiatives, his teams won the 2006 Honoring the Game Award, presented by the Positive Coaching Alliance at Stanford University. The Governor issued a proclamation stating that his teams had “brought honor to Missouri,” and a local newspaper called one of his teams “a philanthropic organization on skates.”
The Manchester (N.H.) Union Leader has called Prof. Abrams “one of the people who help serve as the conscience for anyone involved in youth sports,” and “a nationally known authority on youth sports.” He is a Champion of the Positive Coaching Alliance, and he serves on the Expert Panel of the Center for Sports Parenting, which is part of the Institute for International Sport at the University of Rhode Island. In 1998, he received the Citation of Merit from the Missouri Park and Recreation Association.
Prof. Abrams teaches family law, children and the law, constitutional law, and American legal history at the University of Missouri. He holds a B.A. summa cum laude from Wesleyan University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and received the Scholar-Athlete Award. He earned his law degree at Columbia.
Prof. Abrams has written or co-authored four books about Family Law and Children and the Law, and the books are required reading in more than one-third of the nation’s law schools. The U.S. Supreme Court has quoted from his law review articles in four decisions. With his book royalties, he has created the Happiness For Health (HFH) program, a permanent endowment that provides toys, stuffed animals and games for the sick and injured children at the University of Missouri Children’s Hospital. HFH also provides parties for children hospitalized on their birthdays and other special occasions.
As a member of the Missouri Bar Commission on Children and the Law, Prof. Abrams drafted fourteen laws enacted by the Missouri legislature to improve the lives of the state’s children. He serves on the bipartisan 15-member Advisory Board of the Missouri Division of Youth Services, which is considered to be the nation’s finest statewide juvenile justice treatment agency. He also serves on the board of directors of the Missouri Juvenile Justice Association, which promotes justice for the state’s children, youth and families.
In 1994, Prof. Abrams received the Meritorious Service to the Children of America Award, presented by the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges to recognize his public service. In 2000, the Missouri Bar Foundation honored him for outstanding service to the cause of justice. At the University of Missouri law school, he has received the Administration of Justice, Distinguished Faculty Achievement, and Teacher-of-the-Year awards.
About Steve Kallas
Born and raised in upper Manhattan, Steve Kallas attended elementary school at P.S. 98 in the Inwood section. He played baseball, basketball and was on the bowling team at the legendary Power Memorial Academy. In his senior year at Power, Steve was awarded the John P. Donohue medal for excellence in athletics.
Steve also played baseball, basketball and was on the bowling team at New York University. Steve later graduated from the Fordham University School of Law, where he was a member of the Law Review.
Steve Kallas presently hosts his own national sports-talk radio show, The Steve Kallas Show, every weekday at noon at sportstalknetwork.com. He also hosts a weekly New York-based sports-talk show, every Thursday evening at 6, on WVOX 1460 AM (and wvox.com) in New Rochelle, New York. In addition, Steve writes a blog, Kallas Remarks, for New York City radio station WFAN (at wfan.com).
Steve has appeared numerous times on television and radio to talk about sports in general, sports and the law, and/or youth sports. His TV appearances include national spots on ESPN’s SportsCenter (with Sage Steele), on Fox and Friends (with Brian Kilmeade), on CNN/Headline News “Prime News” (with Mike Galanos), as well as a local spot on Fox 5 News. He has also appeared on MSG’s SportsDesk (with Deb Placey) and Talk of Our Town (multiple times) on the Madison Square Garden Network, as well as Connecticut Public Television (at cptv.org).
On radio, Steve has appeared numerous times on Rick Wolff’s WFAN show, “The Sports Edge.” He has also appeared multiple times with Mike Francesa, and on The Boomer and Carton Show and The Joe Benigno and Evan Roberts Show, as well as with Steve Somers and Richard Neer.
In 2009, Steve became a member of the 21st Century Media Alliance. He now often appears with host Rick Morris on ClevelandSportsTalk.com.
Steve’s writing includes three years as a columnist for Madison Square Garden’s website, MSGNetwork.com, and one year for the New York Post Sports Week (in its only year of existence), where he has covered all of the major sports (baseball, football, basketball and hockey) and horse racing as well. His work has appeared in such varied publication as Sports Business Journal, Hispanic Beisbol Magazine, The Hartford Courant, Hoof Beats Magazine, The Scarsdale Inquirer, thebiglead.com and The Horseman and Fair World Magazine.
Steve is a director of The Center for Sports Parenting. In 2004, he was selected by The Citizenship through Sports Alliance to be on a national expert panel which, in 2005, came out with its National Report Card on Youth Sports.