Ed Sabol
BornEdwin Sabol
(1916-09-11) September 11, 1916 (age 103)
Atlantic City, New Jersey
Alma materOhio State University
OccupationCo-founder of NFL Films
AwardsAwards and honors

Edwin "Ed" Sabol (born September 11, 1916) is an American filmmaker and the founder (with his son Steve Sabol, among others) of NFL Films. He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011 as a contributor due to his works with NFL Films. He is married to his wife Audrey, with a daughter, Blair; and granddaughter, Penny. His son Steve died on September 18, 2012.[1]


Early life, education, and careerEdit

Sabol was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey and raised in Blairstown, New Jersey. While attending Blair Academy, he excelled in several sports, and set a World Interscholastic Swimming record in the 100-yard freestyle race.[2] He continued his noted swimming career at the Ohio State University. He was selected for the 1936 Olympic team but refused to participate because of the games' connections to Nazi Germany.[3] He had some success in the theater as an actor, appearing on Broadway for the production of Where Do We Go from Here.[2] He served in World War II, and upon returning to civilian life, worked as a clothing salesman out of his father-in-law's factory.[4]

NFL FilmsEdit

He founded Blair Motion Pictures in 1962. Its first major contract was to film the 1962 NFL Championship Game between the New York Giants and the Green Bay Packers at Yankee Stadium in New York. In 1964, Blair Motion Pictures became NFL Films, with an exclusive deal to preserve NFL games on film. It has been said by his son Steve Sabol, of NFL Films, "The only other human endeavor more thoroughly captured on 16-mm film than the National Football League is World War II." [4] In 1995, he officially retired from NFL Films in his role as President and Chairman.[2] In 1996, he was elected to the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.[3]

On February 5, 2011, Sabol was elected for enshrinement in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

Awards and honorsEdit

  • 1935 World Interscholastic Record holder, 100-yard freestyle swimming [2]
  • 1937 Big Ten championship, 400-yard freestyle relay swimming [2]
  • 1937 National AAU championship, 400-yard freestyle relay swimming [2]
  • 91 Emmy Awards (to NFL Films) [2]
  • 1987 Order of the Leather Helmet (presented by the NFL Alumni Association) [3]
  • 1987 Bert Bell Memorial Award (presented by the NFL) [3]
  • 1991 Pete Rozelle Award (presented by the NFL) [3]
  • 1996 International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame [3]
  • 1996 Broadcast Pioneers Hall of Fame
  • 2003 Lifetime Achievement Emmy [2]
  • 2004 John Grierson International Gold Medal [5]
  • 2011 Pro Football Hall of Fame [6]


External linksEdit

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