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Hines Ward finds himself back on TV


It appears that Hines Ward will be back on television. According to Michael DiVittorio of The Daily News (Pa.), Ward will take part in an hour-long documentary featuring a local high school. And you thought Ward could only play football and dance.

Here’s the story:

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward and Clairton City School District junior Carlton Dennis will be featured as part of an upcoming documentary.

USA Network is teaming with the NFL for “NFL Characters Unite,” premiering Feb. 10.
February is being billed as USA’s Characters Unite Month.

The one-hour film follows NFL stars as they help young people tackle racism, bullying and other forms of discrimination.

District officials said the Super Bowl XL MVP came to the school Nov. 22. He spent some personal time with Carlton, who is originally from Trinidad, as well as ate with students, participated in an assembly, and the students sang to him.

District officials said no one was allowed to talk about filming at the time.

District spokesperson Alexis Trubiani said after Wednesday night’s school board meeting that an announcement about the show was released that day, and she talked about what it means for Clairton to be a part of the documentary.

“It’s an honor for our district to be chosen to do this,” Trubiani said. “We look forward to seeing the final product.”

Trubiani said Ward’s visit was organized in part by The Future Is Mine and the Hear Me Project.

Ward was seen playing catch with Carlton during warm-ups at the Steelers’ last regular season home game Dec. 24 against the St. Louis Rams.

The documentary was created by The Hochberg Ebersol Co. and executive produced by company co-founders Charlie Ebersol and Justin W. Hochberg. It’s directed by Greg Frith from ESPN Classic SportsCentury, ESPN 25 and other NFL Films projects.

Other NFL stars in the documentary include Atlanta Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez, New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham and NBC’s “Football Night in America” analyst and former Indianapolis Colts head coach Tony Dungy.

Each star helps to transform the life of a teen currently dealing with adversities.

“As a nation, we’ve experienced great hardship in recent years, and it’s heartwarming to see such empathetic emotion and acts of selflessness from superstar athletes,” said Ebersol via a press release. “This film is a powerful and eye-opening journey into the most-guarded corners of four football heroes’ lives as they are brought back to their most difficult childhood memories by four incredible boys and girls who are currently living through those same challenges.”

“It’s a beautiful thing when a few brave voices can be delivered to millions of brilliant people ready to change the world,” added Hochberg. “These four NFL stars in particular have helped a group of at-risk teens in a way that will last forever — USA and Characters Unite are the perfect vehicles to bring this incredibly inspiring project to the world.”

“The documentary will give viewers a unique perspective on the challenges some of their favorite football heroes have faced, and demonstrate to audiences that they, too, can help put an end to the hate and bigotry that remains too prevalent in our country,” said Toby Graff, USA’s senior vice president, public affairs. “We are proud to have teamed up with the NFL to be able to share this powerful documentary as part of Characters Unite Month.”

“We are pleased to work with USA on their inspirational Characters Unite Month,” said Tracy Perlman, NFL vice president of entertainment marketing and promotions. “We are proud that coach Tony Dungy, Tony Gonzalez, Jimmy Graham and Hines Ward are standing up to fight discrimination and prejudice.”

For more information on the documentary as well as Characters Unite, go online to or




Author: Mark Kaboly

Mark Kaboly is the Pittburgh Steelers beat writer for the Tribune-Review. Mark has covered more than 300 NFL football games in all 32 NFL cities as well as four Super Bowls -- XL in Detroit, XLIII in Tampa, XLV in Dallas and 50 in San Francisco. A Belle Vernon Area graduate, Mark earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English with a specialization in journalism from California University of Pennsylvania. Mark lives in Port Vue with his wife, Jennifer; daughter Briella; and boys Rocco and Bugsley Pug

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