John U. Bacon | Essay / Analysis, Sports Commentator

John U. Bacon has worked nearly three decades as a writer, a public speaker, and a college instructor, winning awards for all three.

Bacon earned an honors degree in history (“pre-unemployment”) from the University of Michigan in 1986, and a Master’s in Education in 1994. In 2005-06, the Knight-Wallace Journalism Fellowship named him the first recipient of the Benny Friedman Fellowship for Sports Journalism.

He has authored ten books on sports, business, health, and history, the last six of which are national bestsellers, including Bo’s Lasting Lessons, Endzone, and The Great Halifax Explosion

Bacon has also pursued his passions for radio, television, coaching and teaching.  In 2007 he was invited to give weekly sports commentary on Michigan Radio every Friday morning and appears weekly on Michigan Radio’s Stateside, and occasionally on National Public Radio, which awarded him the PRNDI prize for nation’s best commentary in 2014. He appears often on TV, including HBO, ESPN, Fox Business, MSNBC, and the Big Ten Network, where he is a frequent contributor to both “Icons” series.

Bacon has taught at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, and teaches at the University of Michigan, where the students selected him for the 2009 Golden Apple award, given annually to the University’s top teacher.

Bacon delivers speeches on the themes taken from his books, and coaching and teaching experiences — including leadership, diversity, motivating millennials, and creativity — to corporations, universities, and other groups around the country and the world.

Bacon is an average hockey player, a mediocre Spanish speaker, and a poor piano player – but this has not stopped him from enjoying all three. He lives in Ann Arbor with his wife and son.

Contributions from John U. Bacon

  • Bacon: Michigan's Revenge Tour rolls on
    Looking at this year’s Michigan football schedule, everyone who plays, coaches, covers, or follows the team knew it would be a tough run, maybe the toughest in the country. Michigan’s schedule include …
  • Bacon: Maryland gets it wrong before they get it right
    D.J. Durkin coached for Jim Harbaugh at Stanford for three years, and at Michigan for one. I liked him, but I didn’t play for him. Among the Michigan players I know, some liked him, some didn’t, but I …
  • Michigan and Michigan State football set for 111th meeting
    Michigan and Michigan State both faced highly ranked opponents last weekend. The unranked Spartans suffered a couple bad losses, and entered last week’s game looking for a miracle against eighth-ranke …
  • Bacon: Mid-season Michigan football check-in
    When we last checked in with the Michigan football team four weeks ago, the Wolverines had just lost to 12th-ranked Notre Dame, then crushed Western Michigan. But the Wolverines still had more questio …
  • EMU the bright spot in football for Michigan
    Two weeks ago, Michigan football was ranked 14th. Michigan State was ranked 11th. The Detroit Lions were supposed to improve with a new coach, and Eastern Michigan was expected to slide back to medioc …