Former Steeler great Jerome Bettis, a Notre Dame player under Coach Holtz, is to be inducted as this year’s Distinguished American. Currently a commentator for Sunday Night Football at NBC, Bettis is considered one of the best running backs in NFL history, and he was named to the Pro Bowl in 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2001 and 2005.
In 1997 he established Jerome Bettis Enterprises, a full-service sports marketing firm. He is affiliated with GlaxoSmithKline, focusing on his struggle with asthma, and he annually hosts the Reggie McKenzie Football Camp. He founded the “Bus Stops Here” Foundation, a non-profit organization, and has established a scholarship program at his Alma Mater McKenzie High School in Detroit. In 2002 he was the recipient of the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award, given annually by the NFL to honor a player’s volunteer and charitable works as well as excellence on the field.