An injury ruined his dreams of playing big time college football so he turned to life of fight crime, only to moonlight broadcasting sports.
Rene Ingoglia is hoping to be the next Troy Aikman, Jon Gruden or Phil Simms in the TV booth. During the week he's your normal husband and father of two who works in law enforcement. In the Orlando Police departments violent crimes division he's known as Detective Ingolia.
"Basically, I'm a robbery detective," he told the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle. "It's a fun job, but it wears on you after awhile. All you deal with are bad people. It makes you a little cynical."
The 39-year-old had dreams of playing at Notre Dame crushed when as a star high school running back in Rochester, New York, he had recruiters from Boston College, Iowa, Syracuse and Wisconsin interested. Ingoglia remembers a recruiter from the Badgers offered him a full ride and told him "Just don't get hurt."
That's exactly what happened. Ingoglia tour up his his left ACL during the second game of his senior year. That Wisconsin recruiter called him back to teach him a valuable life lesson about sports, injuries and life.
"He told me, 'You go to buy a car at a dealership. You go back one month later, and there's a dent in it. You don't ask the dealer why. You just get a car that most looks like it.'"
With all those schools running away from scholarship offers, Ingoglia ended up at the University of Massachusetts. He started in 1992 after a redshirt season and went on to finish his Minutemen career with 4,624 yards (third in school history) and 54 touchdowns (eighth best in D I-AA) history. UMass inducted him into its Sports Hall of Fame four years ago.
Following college, Ingoglia, who wasn't drafted by the NFL graduated in 1996 with a degree in kinesiology. He played on the practice squad for the Buffalo Bills and Washington Redskins. Ingoglia even made the 1997 Bills' 53-man roster over the second half for a 6-10 season for coach Marv Levy.
In 1999, Ingoglia played running back in NFL Europe for a Frankfurt Galaxy team that featured future Carolina Panthers star Jake Delhomme at quarterback. He got into the end zone in the World Bowl as Frankfurt won the championship game.
After getting into law enforcement, Ingoglia wanted to give broadcasting a try and in need of a demo tape he gambled that he could get a gig. In 2008, he walked on as a broadcaster for UMass, paying his own travel expenses, from hotels to meals and everything in-between to get that coveted demo tape.
After spending close to $9,000 of his own money to learn the TV ropes, Ingoglia used that tape to earn a spot at the minor leagues of ESPN on its Regional Television network. He did three games for ESPN Regional and the network liked his potential.
This year Ingoglia's broadcasting dreams moved up a notch, doing games for ESPN3.