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Ask Coach Wolff


About Rick Wolff

Rick Wolff is a nationally-recognized expert in the field of sports psychology and sports parenting. Often quoted by the media about the issues that face today’s athletes, Wolff has written and lectured widely on the psychological pressures that accompany America’s passion for sports.

From 1995 to 2005, Wolff wrote hundreds of widely-acclaimed prescriptive columns on sports parenting that ran in Sports Illustrated. In addition, Wolff’s by-line has also appeared in such well-known publications as The New York Times, Harvard Magazine, the Harvard Business Review, GQ, Hemispheres, Sesame Street Magazine, Child, Scholastic, Family Life, USA TODAY, Psychology Today, Readers Digest, and many others.

Wolff has authored or co-authored 18 books, including four in the sports parenting field. One of his most recent efforts is the highly-acclaimed, Parenting Young Athletes the Ripken Way (Gotham, 2006), which he co-authored with Cal Ripken, Jr.  Wolff also penned The Sports Parenting Edge (Running Press, 2003), Coaching Kids for Dummies (IDG, 2000) and Good Sports: The Concerned Parents Guide to Competitive Sports (Dell, 1992).

Wolff’s most recent general sports book is Harvard Boys: A Father’s and Son’s Adventures Playing Minor League Baseball (Skyhorse, 2007), which he co-authored with his son John, who graduated from Harvard and who played professional baseball in the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets’ organizations.

For the past 15 years, Wolff has hosted a weekly sports parenting program, “The Sports Edge”, on WFAN Radio in New York City. He’s been a featured expert on Oprah, ESPN, CNN, ABC’s “NightLine”, ABC’s “20/20”, The Today Show, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, Fox & Friends, Fox Business, CNBC, PBS, A&E, MSNBC, Court TV, Lifetime, SportsChannel, the Madison Square Garden Network, and dozens of other media outlets. He’s also won an Emmy Award for his on-air work on SportsChannel.  In 1997, Wolff co-hosted an original videotape program, Youth Sports, with Steve Young, the Hall of Fame quarterback from the San Francisco 49ers.

Wolff, a former professional baseball player in the Detroit Tigers’ organization, also served as the roving sports psychology coach in the Cleveland Indians organization from 1990-94. He’s worked with numerous top professional and collegiate athletes, including players from the National Football League, the National Hockey League, and Major League Baseball. He also served as the head baseball coach at Mercy College (Dobbs Ferry, NY) from 1978-1985, when the Flyers were nationally-ranked in Division II (NCAA). He was inducted into the Mercy College Athletics Hall of Fame in 2008.

Wolff graduated magna cum laude in psychology from Harvard University. He received his master’s degree with high honors in psychology at Long Island University. He’s a longtime member of the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sports Psychology as well as the American Baseball Coaches Association.

Wolff and his wife, Trish, have three grown children — John, Alyssa, and Samantha who all played a variety of sports. Wolff and his wife reside in Armonk, NY.