2. Art Modell
Lost in the debate regarding his Pro Football Hall of Fame candidacy, Arthur Bertram Modell built football in one city – Cleveland – and rebuilt the modern NFL in another, Baltimore. He saw Monday Night Football and the financial model of using television in the NFL to make the league wealthy. He sat in every television meeting the league had for 35 years right next to Pete Rozelle, who is probably the No. 1 sports visionary on the planet over the last 50 years.
Modell’s journey was never easy, never unchallenged. He saw the power and growth of the Cleveland Clinic as a philanthropist and his name sits on what used to be the Lyric Theatre in downtown Baltimore.
He brought football back to Baltimore and that alone continues to make an impact and give the community active Sundays, civic pride and a reason to rally. He dreamed a lot of dreams growing up poor without a father. He did well and left Baltimore much better than he found it.
See next page for our No. 1 Baltimore sports dreamer…