Tonight’s premiere of Brian and The Boz (9 p.m. ET, ESPN) tells the story of former University of Oklahoma and Seattle Seahawks linebacker Brian “The Boz” Bosworth. Bosworth was one of the most talked-about athletes in the late 1980s for his style and swagger on and off the field. Front Row had a chance to chat with Bosworth about the film:
How were you first approached to work with ESPN Films on this 30 for 30?
I was asked if there was any interest to do a 30 for 30 several years ago, but I personally was not in a good place as my life was in chaos. My father was dying still full of anger. I felt the piece would perhaps add nothing positive to my life and maybe cause more damage.
It was my dear friend Wallis Marsh [who] suggested I should seriously consider telling my real story – my dream as a little boy and the struggles and insecurities of coming to Oklahoma. My concern was that I had done so much damage to my school that doing this would only be viewed as yet another attempt to promote THE BOZ.
I finally sat down with Thaddeus [D. Matula, the film’s director] and explained that I would only be interested if I could expose the “real Brian” and show the beginning of hope, the steps to stardom, along with the ultimate self-destruction of all of it. At first, I admit I was fearful ESPN Films might tell the story in a sensationalistic way and not capture how much OU and that team meant to me. We aren’t “OUtlaws.” We are OKLAHOMA! I trusted ESPN Films and they came through. . .big time!
What do you think viewers will learn about you from the film?
I hope they remember everything “The BOZ” did, the good, the bad and especially the ugly. Then I would like to introduce to everyone, “Brian,” a boy full of flaws, fears, anxiety, but with a dream to be larger than life for the love of my father. And I hope they see how truly meaningful [former Oklahoma head football coach] Barry Switzer was to my journey. Without Barry, there would never be BOZ to inspire Brian to believe in himself when my own father did not. Only when I hit rock bottom and everything I had built had burned to the ground could Brian rise from the ashes. Only when I hit rock bottom and everything I had built had burned to the ground could Brian rise from the ashes. By asking Him [God] to show me the way, He blessed me with a second chance to live, love, and confront The BOZ head on!