At 30, Dan August is a junior executive. He’s just 3 months into his job as head of strategic marketing and planning for the National Football League.
At 25, Michael Sam is an NFL “veteran.” The St. Louis Rams cut him at the end of training camp last summer. He then spent time on the Dallas Cowboys’ practice squad before being waived.
Sam would love another shot at the pros. So would guys like Felix Jones, Michael Bush, Darron Thomas, Keith Price and Mike Kafka.
Tomorrow, they get their chance. And they’ll have August — a 2003 Staples graduate and Dartmouth economics major — to thank.
August — who starred in tennis, not football, at Staples — helped develop the 1st-ever “Veteran Combine.” Set at the Arizona Cardinals’ training site in Tempe, it brings together 100 free agents and scouts from all 32 NFL teams.
August came up with the idea. He refined it with 2 other young NFL staffers. Commissioner Roger Goodell approved it. Then came buy-in from players, agents and team officials.
August — who was a Morgan Stanley investment banker before joining the NFL in 2008 — told Bloomberg Business that the Veteran Combine not only helps former players. It’s also efficient for teams — just like the Scouting Combine for college athletes.
August hopes it’s good for fans too. The NFL Network broadcasts a 1-hour special tomorrow (Sunday, March 22, 8 p.m.) to test interest.
(To read more on August and the Veteran Combine from Bloomberg Business, click here.)