1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Team Captain; Portrayed in Disney’s “Miracle”
Millions of Americans remember Mike Eruzione as the captain of the US Hockey Team that beat the odds to win the Gold Medal at the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid, NY. It was his decisive winning goal that beat the Soviet team and stunned the world. That victory against the Soviets advanced the US Hockey Team to the gold medal game where they beat Finland.
A native of Massachusetts, Eruzione was a well-known sports talent; he excelled as an all scholastic in baseball, football, and hockey. While attending Boston University, Eruzione captained the hockey team his senior year and finished his college career as the third leading scorer in BU history. The years he played at BU, his team won four Eastern Collegiate Championships. Eruzione was voted the Best Defensive Forward in the Hockey East Conference and eventually inducted into the Boston University Athletic Hall of Fame.
Eruzione played on two US National Teams and played two years with the Toledo Goaldiggers of the International Hockey League. The IHL rewarded him with the McKenzie Award, which is annually presented to the most outstanding American-born player in the IHL. The following year Eruzione was chosen to join the 1980 Olympic Team. He was honored by being elected captain by his Olympic teammates.
After the victory in Lake Placid, Eruzione spent several years in New York and New Jersey as a sports commentator for Madison Square Garden. In 1984 he joined ABC and did broadcasting for the Winter Olympics in Sarajevo, the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, and the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. In 1992 he did broadcasting for CBS in Albertville, France and in Lillehammer, Norway during the 1994 Olympic Games.
The 1980 Olympic Team received many accolades after winning the gold medal, including being inducted into the United States Olympic Hall of Fame. On December 2, 1999, the 1980 Olympic Hockey Team was given the ultimate compliment when Sports Illustrated voted their moment the #1 sports moment of the century. Eruzione and his teammates had the honor of lighting the Olympic Flame at the Opening Ceremonies of the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. In 2004 Eruzione and his teammates were featured in the Disney movie Miracle.
For the past several years Eruzione has traveled throughout the country representing major corporations as their spokesperson and/or motivational speaker. Presently, he is employed by Boston University as the Director of Development for Athletics. He is actively involved with fundraising events for the Olympic Committee as well as several charitable and youth organizations.