Harry Carson's 13-year stint with the New York Football Giants is one of the longest tenures in club history. The indestructible former linebacker served as Team Captain for 10 of his 13 seasons including the 1986 season when the Giants defeated the Denver Broncos 39-20 in Super Bowl XXI. Rated the #1 "Inside Linebacker" in NFL history according to Pro Football Weekly, Carson was named to the All-Rookie Team after his first NFL season. Subsequently, during his NFL career, he was named to the All-NFL Team 7 times, the All-NFC Team 8 times, and NFC Linebacker of the Year twice. He once made an amazing 25 tackles in a Monday Night Football Game against the Green Bay Packers. With performances like that he was selected by his peers to play in the NFC-AFC Pro Bowl 9 times. He is among the top 250 players to ever play professional football with his induction as the 231st member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Carson set the pace for his outstanding career while a student at South Carolina State University where he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education. He continued his graduate studies at South Carolina State and Fairleigh Dickinson University. Before college Harry Carson attended Wilson Senior High and McClenaghan High Schools in Florence, South Carolina. There he served as Senior Class President, Co-Chairman of the school's Bi-Racial Committee and ROTC Commander.
While at South Carolina State the two-time Captain never missed a game during his four seasons as a defensive lineman for the Bulldogs. During his college football career, Harry received honors for the Kodak All-American Football Team, NAIA All-American Team, Pittsburgh Courier All-American Team, All-State (South Carolina), All Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and MEAC Defensive Player of the Year twice. He excelled off the field academically as well, winning awards for the highest academic average amongst Black College All-Americans.
The end of Carson's football career marked the beginning of his career in Sports Broadcasting. Retiring from the NFL after the 1988 season, Carson co-hosted CNN's NFL Preview appeared on WCBS as a Broadcast Analyst and he was a Special Correspondent for playoff and Super Bowl on ABC-TV's Good Morning America. Carson has worked as a Broadcast Analyst with ABC Sports College Football as well as New York's Madison Square Garden Network. He is currently a Contributor to the New York Giants magazine program Giants Access Blue .
Carson serves as Executive Director of the Fritz Pollard Alliance. The Alliance is an organization that represents all National Football League Minority Coaches, Coordinators, Scouts, Player Personnel and Game Day Officials dedicated to creating a greater sense of racial diversity within non-player roles within the National Football League.
Carson has written Point of Attack published by McGraw-Hill and is currently working on his second more comprehensive book reflecting on his career and life after football; The Smell of Freshly Cut Grass.
He is affiliated with many organizations and is involved with numerous charities such as The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, The United Way, The United Way's Celebrity Read Program, The Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Boys Scouts of America, The Young Father's Program (at UMDNJ), The Literacy Council of New Jersey, Habitat for Humanity, The Tomorrow's Children Fund, MANetc, Inc. and The Autism Coalition.
Harry is an honorary member of Phi Theta Kappa International Society and currently serves as a Board Member of The United Way of New York City, The NFL Alumni and MANetc, Inc.
Some of Carson's post football careers honors include inductions into:
The Wilson High School Alumni Hall of Fame
The South Carolina State University Athletic Hall of Fame
The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Hall of Fame
The Florence South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame
The South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame
The Sports Hall of Fame of New Jersey
The New Jersey Sportswriter's Hall of Fame
The Black College Alumni Hall of Fame
The College Football Hall of Fame (Division II)
The College Football Hall of Fame
The Professional Football Hall of Fame
Carson has been named to the Sheridan Broadcasting Network 100 Year Anniversary Black College All-American Team. He is a member of the All Division II College Football Team of the Quarter Century (1975-1999) and he has been recognized as the South Carolina College Athlete of the Millennium by The State Newspaper of South Carolina. Harry Carson has also been recognized as a Kentucky Colonel and he has been presented The Order of the Palmetto, the highest honor given to a native of South Carolina.
Harry has served as an Advisor to the Congress of Neurological Surgeons and as a member of the Brain Injury Association's Sports Injury Prevention Council. Former Governor Christine Whitman appointed Mr. Carson as a member of the New Jersey Advisory Council on Traumatic Brain Injury. He has established himself as an authority and internationally recognized speaker on Concussions in Sports.
Mr. Carson has represented the United States as a Special Goodwill Ambassador to France and was appointed by former New Jersey Governor Jim Florio to serve as Executive Director and Chairman of the New Jersey Governor's Council on Sports and Fitness. Carson has also worked with Bill Clinton, the former President of the United States, on his Teen Anti-Smoking Campaign. He has also been honored by Robert Morgenthau, the District Attorney of the County of New York for his participation in helping to prevent child abuse in New York City. He has worked with South Carolina's Attorney General Travis Medlock's "Be Drug Free to Succeed" Program. Harry has been a spokesperson for the Bergen County, New Jersey Cancer Education and Early Detection Program to increase the awareness of prostate cancer among men, especially Black Men.
Harry Carson has also been a very strong advocate toward the plight of his National Football League brethren. He used his Hall of Fame induction speech as an opportunity to highlight the problems of pensions and benefits of retired players. He serves as an Advisory Board member of the Gridiron Greats Player Assistance Fund that provides needed funds to former players who have dire needs.
Carson is a lecturer and motivational speaker to diverse groups that range from juvenile and prison inmates to high school scholars, from college athletes to corporate executives and political leaders.
In his spare time, Harry Carson enjoys mentoring young people and current athletes, playing golf, bass fishing, auto racing and target shooting.