Who is Bill Simmons: The creator and CEO of the sports and pop culture website The Ringer, William John Simmons (born September 25, 1969) is an American sports analyst, author, podcaster, and former sports writer. Simmons first attracted notice with his website under the name “The Boston Sports Guy,” and in 2001, ESPN hired him. He then owned the website Grantland and worked there until 2015. He worked for ESPN as a writer for ESPN.com, the host of his podcast called The B.S. Report, and a two-year NBA Countdown analyst.
In 2016, Simmons started and currently leads The Ringer, a sports and pop culture website and podcast network. For one season in 2016, he co-hosted Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons on HBO. He is the host of The Bill Simmons Podcast at The Ringer. Their writing style Simmons is renowned for blending sports knowledge and analysis with pop culture allusions, and his non-sports-related personal life, and is written from the perspective of an ardent sports fan.
Bill Simmons Early Life
William Simmons and Jan Corbo welcomed Simmons into the world on September 25, 1969. His stepmother Molly Clark is a doctor, and his father was a school administrator. Simmons was an only child who was raised in Marlborough and Brookline, Massachusetts. When his parents split when he was thirteen, he then moved to Stamford, Connecticut, to live with his mother.
He attended the Greenwich Country Day School before finishing high school at Brunswick School in Greenwich, Connecticut. He finished his postgraduate year at the Wallingford, Connecticut, prep school Choate Rosemary Hall in 1988. Simmons credits The Breaks of the Game, written by David Halberstam, as the single most influential book in the development of his sportswriting career.
Simmons published a “Ramblings” column for The Crusader while a student at the College of the Holy Cross and later worked as the publication’s sports editor. Additionally, he revived the school’s mock newspaper and launched “The Velvet Edge,” a 12- to 14-page underground handwritten magazine about the residents in his freshman residence.
His principal area of study in political science was the Middle East, which he frequently mentions in his articles to argue that his profession as a sports writer has nothing to do with his degree. He earned a B.A. in political science with a 3.04 GPA and graduated in 1992. He then attended Boston University while residing in Brookline, Massachusetts, where he eventually earned a master’s degree in print journalism two years later.
Bill Simmons Personal life
Kari Simmons (née Crichton), who is exclusively referred to in his writings as “The Sports Gal,” is married to Simmons. Daughter Zoe Simmons (born in 2005) and son Benjamin Oakley Simmons are their two children (born in 2007). William Simmons, affectionately known as “The Sports Dad,” was the director of schools in Easton, Massachusetts, for more than 15 years. He was born in 1947. The Boston Red Sox, New England Patriots, and Boston Celtics are just a few of Simmons’ favorite Boston sports franchises.
Prior to the 2008 playoffs, he states that he completely lost interest in the Boston Bruins and the NHL, despite being a longtime supporter of both. He attributes this to their terrible management. He also claims to be a supporter of the English Premier League soccer team Tottenham Hotspur, and he recalls having amusing soccer discussions with former ESPN coworker David Hirshey, a soccer columnist and ardent Arsenal supporter.
The Simmons Family Foundation was founded by Simmons and his family. To help HBCU graduates, they donated a scholarship to the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
Bill Simmons Career
Following graduate school, Simmons stayed in Charlestown for eight years while working a variety of professions until finally securing a position at ESPN. After graduating from graduate school, Simmons began working as an editorial assistant and high school sports reporter for the Boston Herald, primarily “answering phones, planning food runs, and working on the Sunday football scores section.”
Three years later, he was hired as a freelancer by Boston Phoenix, but after three months, he became bankrupt and had to start working as a bartender. In order to create the website, BostonSports Guy.
com in 1997 while working as a bartender and server at night, Simmons “badgered” Digital City Boston of AOL into giving him a column. Since the website already had a “Movie Guy,” he chose to call his column “Sports Guy.”
Simmons forwarded the column to his friends while it was only available on AOL at first. People started emailing him to see if they could be included on his mailing list. Prior to it going online in November 1998, Simmons would mail it to roughly 100 people every month for the first 18 months.
The website immediately gained a following as a result of emails Simmons’ high school and college pals were sending to one another. His website received an average of 45,000 daily views and 10,000 visitors in 2001.