Big Day for Big Ben in Oxford, Part II

April 26th, 2015 by

This is my school, you know. It’s an honor to be a graduate, an alumnus. It’s something I’m hoping my kids can come back in 15-20 years and see their name on the field and it means something to them too. – Ben

From the Miami RedHawks site:

With the skies opening up over Yager Stadium, Miami fans were quickly introduced to the Dauch Indoor Sports Center on Saturday.

The RedHawk faithful gathered inside the newest jewel of Miami Athletics for the DISC Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, which featured speeches from Director of Athletics David Sayler, President Dr. David Hodge, Miami alum and Pittsburgh Steelers star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Miami alum and Super Bowl winning Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, Miami alum and lead DISC contributor David Dauch, Miami soccer captain Haley Walter and Miami football defensive back Heath Harding. Those speakers eventually gave way to the official ribbon cutting for the facility before transitioning to the football team’s spring scrimmage.

As the downpour continued outside, fans surrounded the RedHawks as they went through their various drills on Ben Roethlisberger Field. The 14-period scrimmage included several 11-on-11 sessions that gave the MU faithful a promising glimpse into next fall.

You can enjoy more photos here.

(Photo above: Ben poses with the Dauch Family)

You can watch video highlights from yesterday’s Ribbon Cutting Ceremony here.

And after the ceremony….

Another RedHawks Football star shared his photo with us!

Paul Moses @_MANimall
I feel so blessed to be able to play this game at this level. I wouldn’t trade my team for anything @_BigBen7

Miami Field Hockey ‏@MiamiOH_FH
Ali and her Sisters with Ben Roethlisberger #mufh #miamiOH #traditions #homecoming2015 #disc

And of course, the day would have not have been complete without a photo of Ben, MU Officer Keith Hibbard and K9 Figo!

Figo (2)
On December 4th 2014, Ben announced that his alma mater, Miami University, would be receiving a grant from the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation. At the time, MU Officer Keith Hibberd thanked Ben for his generosity:

“Thank you Ben for giving back to your alma mater, Miami University, and supporting our mission of keeping our campus and surrounding communities safe.”

The grant will be used for training that will not only benefit MU, but surrounding agencies who will be able to train at venues on the campus.

*Thank you again to MU and all those that shared their photos!!

Big Day for Big Ben in Oxford

April 25th, 2015 by

Ben was an honored guest today at the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony celebrating Miami’s David & Anita Dauch Indoor Sports Center and Ben Roethlisberger Field.

In October of last year, Ben and Ashley agreed to donate $1 million towards the Indoor Sports Center at Miami University.

The 91,000-square-foot complex that took about a year to construct was funded by $13 million in donations, and it will be used by student-athletes, intramural and club sports teams as well as youth athletic programs for tournaments.

The facility includes a full 120-yard football field with a synthetic playing surface similar to neighboring Yager Stadium. It also has netting for baseball, softball and golf; four 100-yard sprint lanes, a high jump and long jump equipment for track; storage space and an observation deck.

According to the Miami Redhawks site, this new facility “will positively impact all 19 of Miami’s sports programs and allow teams to train year-round”.

There were plenty of photos being snapped and we have several to share, along with some of our favorite tweets from today’s event:

I am so proud to see this building become a reality. Let’s have a good football season! – Ben

(Photo courtesy of Joe Danneman/FOX 19)

David Hodge ‏@PresHodge
Terrific crowd for dedication of indoor. Huge thanks to Dauchs, Harbaugh, Roethlisberger and all who made it possible.

Jackie Patterson ‏@OHHSAPrincipal
Loving the spirit today at the Miami David & Anita Dauch Indoor Sports Center! Roethlisberger and Harbaugh are here!

Future MU football stars: Freshman D tackle Nathon Trawick and #1 LB coming (out of Michigan) Junior B. McMullen II pose with Ben after the ceremony:

Junior B.McMullen ll @_Jmcmullen17
Great time with @_BigBen7 #LoveAndHonor #Steelernation

Joe Danneman ‏@FOX19Jo
Ben Roethlisberger signed autographs and took pictures for a solid hour after the ceremony.

Griff Claypool ‏@GriffClaypool
Ben Roethlisberger, folks! @_BigBen7 @steelers @MiamiRedHawks

Coleman Barnes ‏@ColemanBarnes
Great to have Ben Roethlisberger & John Harbaugh back for the ribbon cutting for the Dauch Indoor Sports Center!

Alexx Zielinski @Alexx_Zielinski
Good time meeting Ben Roethlisberger today at the spring game!

Ashley Nicole @ancrs
Highlight of my day: I got to meet Ben Roethlisberger! #BenRoethlisberger #SteelersNation

And the funniest photo/tweet of the day goes to…

Cole Fryman ‏@Cole_Fryman
Taking selfies with Ben Roethlisberger and @PresHodge. Apparently only Hodge got the memo.

Check back this weekend and we’ll have more from today’s event!

With the 11th pick in the NFL Draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers select…

April 24th, 2015 by

April 24, 2004

“I was in New York. I had my mom and dad with me, my sister was there and my agent. My college coach at the time and his wife were there. Everyone kind of had their speculations of ‘what number’ and what team. The teams we thought were going to take me didn’t, but it ended up working out perfectly for me.” – Ben, from the video, “Recalling Draft Day”.

Ben arrives at Madison Square Garden that Saturday morning with plenty of supporters in his corner – his family, his agents Leigh Steinberg and Ryan Tollner, and his college coach, Terry Hoeppner and his wife Jane.

DraftDay_Eli_BenAt 11:20PM: Ben and four others – Eli Manning, Roy Williams, Robert Gallery, and Kellen Winslow Jr. – are introduced to the crowd.

Green Room waiting -

• 12:25PM: NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue announces that the San Diego Chargers have selected Eli Manning with the No. 1 pick. Eli emerges from stage right and is greeted by unwelcoming chants by the Chargers fans in attendance.

• 12:58PM: NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue announces that the New York Giants have selected NC State quarterback Philip Rivers with the No. 4 pick. Soon thereafter the trade with the Chargers is announced – Eli Manning is headed to New York, Philip Rivers to San Diego. Both fan bases seem pleased with the outcome….as Ben waits for his turn.

• 1:57PM: Pittsburgh is on the clock. “We see Ben Roethlisberger on the phone,” ESPN announces for the television audience. Sure enough, it’s Steelers coach Bill Cowher calling to tell Ben the Steelers are going to select him with the No. 11 pick.

• 2:00PM: NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue announces that Ben is indeed headed for Pittsburgh. Ben arrives on stage and dons a Steelers ballcap and holds up a Steelers jersey.

• 2:01PM: The Steelers fans in the crowd begin to chant, “Ben, Ben, Ben….”

• 2:02PM: Just off stage, Ben does a press conference for television reporters and then disappears from the public room to do a few interviews with the Pittsburgh media.

• 2:43PM: Ben emerges from the players’ party room where a press conference with print media is set up. An ESPN media representative announces, “Call from Steelers owner Mr. Rooney…” Ben takes the phone and his first words, “Yes sir, Mr. Rooney…”.

• 2:48PM: After another media conference and a round of short one-on-one interviews that last until close to 3:30 p.m., Ben heads for the door – Steelers jersey still slung over his left shoulder.

“We felt if Ben would drop to No. 11, we’re not up here every year in the draft, and a quality player like that is hard to pass up. He’s right there with Eli and Philip. The thing that separates him is experience. Ben only played one year in high school and three in college…It’s a good situation we have with the veterans in front of him, and not feel the pressure of having to turn the team around immediately.” – Former Steelers Coach Bill Cowher, on selecting Ben over a running back, April 24, 2004.

From a Draft Day report that appeared on the Sports Illustrated website later that evening:

NFLDraft_BenIf anybody had the right to feel exasperated watching the Eli Manning-Philip Rivers saga unfold Saturday, it was Ben Roethlisberger.

Even after his name finally was called by the Pittsburgh Steelers with the 11th overall selection, Roethlisberger had to endure a news conference in which half of the questions were about Manning’s power play to stay out of San Diego.

The other half were thinly veiled insults at the quality of play Roethlisberger faced in the Mid-American Conference, as if he should apologize for having attended Miami of Ohio instead of the other Miami — the one that had six players drafted among the top 21 picks of this draft.

It’s hard to argue with Roethlisberger’s track record at Miami, where he led the school to a MAC championship and its first bowl victory in 28 years, a 49-28 win over Louisville in the 2003 GMAC Bowl. As a three-year starter, he passed for 10,829 yards and 84 touchdowns.

“The attention has been on Eli all week and that’s fine with me,” Roethlisberger said. “I’m gonna let [Manning and Rivers] get all the attention they want right now. When I start playing, that’s when I’m going to be getting the attention.”

You can read the rest of their NFL Draft report here.

“Judging by body language, I think he is really happy, They have great receivers and most important, they have a great program. I think it worked out well.” – Ken Roethlisberger on his son’s Draft Day, from the interview below.

From Kevin Chlum, at The Miami Student:

DraftDay_FamilyThere are few NFL teams hated in Oxford, Ohio, more than the Pittsburgh Steelers. Much to the dismay of many Miamians, former RedHawk quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was selected by the Steelers as the 11th pick in the 2004 NFL draft Saturday.

Roethlisberger became the highest drafted player in Miami history.

“The Steelers are a real good fit [for Ben],” Miami coach Terry Hoeppner said. “They are probably the best team of the three quarterbacks who went early. For your ego, you want to go as high as possible, but the more important thing for the future is the right organization.”

Roethlisberger was one of few draftees invited to Madison Square Garden for the draft and many experts predicted him to be selected within the top five picks. But as the draft unfolded, it became clear Roethlisberger would fall.

Ken Roethlisberger was relieved to have the anticipation over. “You better believe that I was relieved,” Ken said. “We had fun while in New York, we went to a Yankees game and a Knicks game, but [Saturday] morning was kind of tense.”

You can read more here.

“The Steelers also are eagerly pursuing Rivers in the final days before the draft, envisioning him as the eventual replacement for Tommy Maddox and a fallback candidate this year, in the event of an emergency. Rivers, who already has earned his degree in business and holds the NCAA record with 51 career starts, is considered a quick study and a better bet to succeed in his rookie season than Miami (Ohio)’s Ben Roethlisberger, who is leaving school with a year of collegiate eligibility remaining.” – Jerry DiPaola, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the night before the draft – April 23, 2004.

You can take a look back at Ben’s NFL Combine here, and his Pro Day workout here.

(The above timeline was made from a combination of notes, television coverage, and highlights from Draft articles that are no longer available online)

And the day after….

“If one of those backs would have slid, we were not going to hesitate to grab him. It’s just like the quarterback position. We felt good about that, but Roethlisberger slid and we got him, and we bettered our football team.” – Former Steelers coach Bill Cowher, on selecting a quarterback over a running back – from an interview with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 26, 2004.

From Don Banks’ column, “Draft Day winners & losers”, SI:

Winners -2, the Steelers were lucky enough to sit tight at No. 11 and still get the quarterback of the future that they so desperately craved. True, the Steelers would have rather had Rivers than Roethlisberger, believing the N.C. State star is more ready to play right away, but the stars still aligned in a nice way for Pittsburgh. Once upon a time, a team would draft a franchise quarterback prospect even if it had a quality starter on the roster. But not in the cap era, it’s too costly. So with the teams in the No. 5 through 10 slots all set at quarterback, the Steelers benefited from Roethlisberger’s tumble.

You can read the rest of Mr. Banks’ column here.

“We’re not looking to rebuild this year. We’re looking to win this division and get into the playoffs and win a championship.” – Steelers Director of Football Operations Kevin Colbert, from an interview in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 26, 2004.

Now not everyone back then was on the Big Ben Welcome Wagon….

From Mike Prisuta’s column in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the day after the Draft:

In the days leading up to Saturday and in the minutes immediately following the No. 11 overall selection, Bill Cowher kept insisting the Steelers didn’t expect to be drafting this high very often.

But in the wake of taking Ben Roethlisberger in the first round, you have to wonder if picking in the vicinity of the top 10 isn’t about to become habit forming.

Same time next year, fellas?

Coming off a six-win season and having missed the playoffs in four of the last six years, the Steelers are in a rebuilding mode rather than a retooling one.

Roethlisberger, from Miami (Ohio) and second-round pick Ricardo Colclough, from Tusculum College, are upside guys who won’t have much of an immediate impact provided they make any at all as rookies.

You’d expect more from No. 11 overall.

Then again, the Steelers should have expected more than they got from Troy Polamalu at No. 16 overall a season ago.

Recent history suggests Roethlisberger is as likely to turn into the next Tim Couch as he is the next Bledsoe, but the Steelers decided to swing for the fences, anyway, rather than to continue simply moving the runners.

(Mr. Prisuta’s column is no longer available online.)

“I’m not Tommy Maddox; can’t be Tommy Maddox. I’m just going to do the best I can.” – Ben, to reporters after his first NFL game against the Baltimore Ravens, September 19, 2004.

Miami University alumni and friends

April 20th, 2015 by

…are invited to join Miami University President David Hodge, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics David Sayler, Head Football Coach Chuck Martin, Ben Roethlisberger, Ravens coach John Harbaugh for the Ribbon Cutting ceremony celebrating Miami’s David & Anita Dauch Indoor Sports Center and Ben Roethlisberger Field on Saturday, April 25th at noon.


Miami Athletics ‏@MiamiRedHawks
Here in Oxford, Ohio we get something done that the @NFL has been trying to do for years: Make the @Ravens and @steelers play nice.

Both Ben and Coach Harbaugh are scheduled as speakers at the event.

All events are open to the public and free of charge, but advance registration for the open house is requested.

You can get more info here.

Big Ben in Tennessee

April 17th, 2015 by

Turkey hunting at Tim McGraw’s farm!


Enjoyed a nice dinner with my old friend Jim Kelly and my new friend, Tim McGraw. – Ben

This one was tweeted out by Fairview High School principal Julie Oyer:

Juli Oyer @wcsFVHS
Taking Be Nice to a whole new level. Legends Jim Kelly AND Ben Roethlisberger are in full support! ‪#‎wcsbenice‬

You can read about the Williamson County TN schools “Be Nice” campaign here.

It’s another Throwback Thursday

April 16th, 2015 by

…courtesy of Cole Peterson!

Left: Ben poses with Cole and his brother Austin Peterson during his days at Miami. Right: Ben gets some serious quarterbacking advice from Cole during practice.

Cole Peterson’s father, John, is the offensive line coach at the University of Pittsburgh, but from 1999 to 2003, he was the offensive line coach and run-game coordinator for the RedHawks.

Cole and his buddy Tanner Montgomery were big fans of Big Ben even back then.

Cole said that Ben always had time for him and Tanner, and would help their dads out by babysitting too, “He’s the best” said Cole.

Tanner’s father, Shane, was the offensive coordinator at Miami University from 2001 to 2005 before becoming the RedHawks 32nd head football coach, succeeding Terry Hoeppner, from 2005 to 2008. He is now the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Youngstown State University.

Cole & Tanner are becoming regular contributors to our Throwback Thursday feature: from Cole & Tanner in February and Tanner’s from last year.

You’re invited…

April 12th, 2015 by

to the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation Weekend!

On Saturday, June 20th:

FoundationEventThe BRF Weekend kicks off with the Triple 7’s event at the beautiful Treesdale Country Club in Gibsonia, PA.

The evening will feature billiards, black jack, horse racing and table games, as well as a silent auction, an open bar and lite fare.

Registration Opens

Table games, billiards, horse racing & a silent auction begin

Bar opens & lite fare served

VIP Texas Hold ‘em Tournament

Silent auction ends and prizes awarded

(Must be at least 21 years of age. Dress is casual, but please, no jeans)

Then on Monday, June 22nd:

Golfers are welcomed to the BRF Invitational, which will also feature pre-tournament competitions, chair massages and a wonderful lunch.

Specially designed on-course challenges keep the competition going, even between strokes!

The itinerary:

Registration opens
Official Tournament Pro Shop opens
Pre Tournament competitions
Warm up chair massages

One lucky participant will be chosen to putt for $5,000 (50 ft)

Shotgun Start
Food & beverages on the course
Additional competitions on the course

Anticipated finish time
Tournament food & drinks

Make your plans now to join Ben for a great time for a great cause! You can either attend as a sponsor (sponsorships start at $500), or attend as a guest ($200 per person) here. Guest tickets are limited.

If you are unable to attend the BRF weekend, but would like to donate to the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation, you can do so here.

Any questions about the BRF Weekend, please contact event coordinator Jennifer Palella at or (610)203-9650.


April 10th, 2015 by

Ben_Troy…is a day to celebrate the greatness, the man, the football player that is Troy!

It is such an honor to have played alongside one of the greatest athletes and football players I’ve ever seen in my life.

Troy, you’re an amazing man, an amazing football player, and an amazing father! Thank you my brother. – Ben

Ben joined The Cook and Poni Show today to discuss what Troy meant to him and the team.

It’s a Throwback Thursday

April 9th, 2015 by

And since this IS the week of the 2015 Masters Championship, a golf photo seemed to be in order:

Michael Jordan, Ben Roethlisberger, Larry Giebelhausen, Justin Timberlake

2009 US Open Challenge -

Ben poses with Michael Jordan, Justin Timberlake and Phoenix police officer Larry Giebelhausen and their trophies after finishing the Golf Digest U.S. Open Challenge on Bethpage State Park’s Black Course Friday, June 12, 2009 in Farmingdale, N.Y.

Ben shot an 81, fulfilling a pledge to break 100. It was the best of his group.

Officer Giebelhausen was selected to play in the foursome after Golf Digest magazine asked readers back in 2008 to submit a six-word statement on why they thought they could break 100 at Bethpage Black. he was one of four finalists that were narrowed down from 73,581 entries and finally, the winner!

Check out video of Ben’s amazing tee shot on the third.

Spring has sprung!

April 7th, 2015 by

Summer is just around the corner, and so is the Giant Eagle Ben Roethlisberger Football Camp!!

April2015Sign up now and make sure you don’t miss the fun:

Dates: June 13th & 14th, 2015

Times: 09:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Place: Seneca Valley High School, Harmony, PA

Cost: $199.

*Use the code BigBen7 for $20 off the registration fee.

Each camper will receive -

• An autographed photo from Ben

• A camp team photo with Ben

• A limited edition Ben Roethlisberger Football ProCamp t-shirt

• 7 Hours of expert instruction

• Opportunity to win contests and prizes


Spots are limited, so participants are encouraged to register early. Don’t forget to use the code BigBen7 for $20 off the registration fee.

You can sign your child up for the camp here.

You can see all the great photos from Ben’s camp here.


WHAT: Nothing at this time


WHAT: The Giant Eagle Ben Roethlisberger Football Camp
WHEN: June 13th & 14th, 2015
WHERE: Seneca Valley High School, Harmony, PA
REGISTRATION: Sign up here (Use code BigBen7 for $20 off fee).


WHAT: The Ben Roethlisberger Foundation Fundraiser
WHEN: Saturday, June 20, 2015
WHERE: Treesdale Country Club, Gibsonia, PA.
TICKETS: Get them in advance here.


WHAT: The Ben Roethlisberger Foundation Invitational
WHEN: Monday, June 22, 2015
WHERE: Treesdale Golf and Country Club, Gibsonia, PA
TICKETS: Get them in advance to play in the tournament (foursomes only) here.




8/9 Pre-Season – Vikings HOF GAME – 8PM NBC
8/14 Pre-Season – @ Jaguars 7:30PM KDKA
8/23 Pre-Season – Packers 8PM KDKA
8/29 Pre-Season – @ Bills 4PM KDKA
9/3 Panthers 7:30PM KDKA
9/10 @ Patriots 8:30PM NBC
9/20 49ers 1PM FOX
9/27 @ Rams 1PM CBS
10/1 Ravens 8:25PM CBS
10/12 @ Chargers 8:30PM ESPN
10/18 Cardinals 8PM FOX
10/25 @ Chiefs 1PM CBS
11/1 Bengals 1PM CBS
11/8 Raiders 1PM CBS
11/15 Browns 1PM CBS
11/22 BYE N/A
11/29 @ Seahawks 4:25PM CBS
12/6 Colts 8:30PM NBC
12/13 @ Bengals 1PM CBS
12/20 Broncos 4:25PM CBS
12/27 @ Ravens 8:30PM NBC
1/3 @ Browns 1PM CBS