When the NFL season kicks off in September, Troy Aikman, age 52, will be handling color, and Joe Buck, age 50, will be managing play-by-play for FOX Sports' game of the week. While Buck is often polarizing, Aikman has become even more likable in the broadcast booth than when he was on the field, which is saying a lot.
The starting quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys from 1989-2000, Aikman helped the team win three Super Bowls (was the MVP of Super Bowl XXVII) and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006. He has been with FOX since 2001 and is reportedly paid $1 million salary annually but that number could be higher considering FOX added "Thursday Night Football" to its programming last season. Either way, between his playing career (where he was the highest-paid player in the NFL after signing an eight-year, $80 million contract in 1993) and his various jobs and ventures these days, Aikman's net worth is a reported $25 million.
Aikman is married to wife Catherine "Capa" Mooty, a high-end fashion retailer. The couple wed in September 2017. Aikman also has two daughters from his previous marriage to Rhonda Worthey (2000-11), a former Cowboys publicist.
Here are five other facts about the Hall of Fame quarterback-turned highly regarded broadcaster.
Troy Aikman: Fast Facts
1. Troy Aikman was the Oklahoma State typing champion
As a sophomore at Henryetta High School, Aikman took Typing 1 expecting it to be an easy grade. What he learned that he enjoyed typing and was very good at it. His friend, Daren Lesley, said Aikman's typing sounded like a machine gun. He took Typing 2 the next year and entered the state competition in 1983, where he won the championship. This made him All-State in both football and typing.
2. A broken leg may have changed his career for the better
Aikman signed with Oklahoma when it was running the I-formation, but became the starter after the team had switched back to the wishbone. He broke his leg against Miami in 1985 and Jamelle Holieway — a perfect fit for OU's option attack — came off the bench and led the Sooners to the national title. After the season, head coach Barry Switzer helped arrange for Aikman to transfer to UCLA, where his skills were better suited. The move paid off, as Aikman became a consensus All-American, won the 1988 Davey O'Brien Award, and became the first overall pick in the 1989 NFL Draft.
3. He went 0-11 as a Dallas Cowboys rookie
In 1989, Jimmy Johnson took over as head coach of the Dallas Cowboys and drafted Aikman with the first pick in the NFL draft. He joined a very young and talent-depleted roster and went 0-11 as a starter en route to a 1-15 season. Of course, things quickly got better. Johnson sent running back Herschel Walker to Minnesota in a blockbuster trade and built a dynasty thanks in part to an influx of draft picks. Aikman also came into his own as the Cowboys made the playoffs in 1991 and went on to win the Super Bowl three out of the next four years.
4. Some say he is better as a broadcaster
After retiring in 2000, Aikman joined FOX as a color commentator and he and Joe Buck have been the broadcasters for the network's game of the week for years. In addition, Aikman has been in the broadcast booth for five Super Bowls and won an Emmy for his work in 2004. Despite his Hall of Fame career, one could make the argument that he is better as a broadcaster than he was a player. In a 2009 Esquire article breaking down which athletes were better as broadcasters or players, Chuck Klosterman wrote: "Even during his best season (probably 1992), Aikman was never the No. 1 QB in the league (or even in the NFC). He is, however, the most competent pro football analyst currently on the market. He doesn't talk too much, and he always seems reasonable, the two rarest qualities in modern broadcasting." Can't argue there.
5. He is the spokesperson for ACME Brick
Aikman has participated in several business ventures, including co-owning a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team and being part-owner of the San Diego Padres. However, he seems most at home as the spokesperson for ACME Brick. Take a look.
— Written by Aaron Tallent, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Tallent is a writer whose articles have appeared in The Sweet Science, FOX Sports’ Outkick the Coverage, Liberty Island and The Washington Post. Follow him on Twitter at @AaronTallent.
(Top photo courtesy of www.foxsports.com)