Former Brown Bernie Kosar Files For Bankruptcy

Not many people remember it, but in the early ’80s, the Miami Hurricanes had a great stretch of quarterbacks. Jim Kelly graduated in 1982, then Bernie Kosar in 1984, then Vinny Testaverde two years after that. A friend of ours always refers to Testaverde as “Vertical Testes,” but that’s neither here nor there. We digress.

Bernie Kosar, Sports Illustrated cover
(Although really, if you’re getting your investment advice from the captions on Sports Illustrated covers, you’re going to end up getting what you deserve.)

Kosar had himself a nice stretch in the NFL, playing for twelve seasons (mostly with the Cleveland Browns). While you’d imagine that meant he was financially set for life, well, not quote; the QB-turned-businessman has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, according to the MIAMI HERALD. 

The filing listed Kosar’s largest unsecured creditors, owed a combined $19.5 million. Among them and the amount of their claims: the Cleveland Browns, a team he quarterbacked from 1985 to 1993, nearly $1.5 million; his ex-wife Babette, $3 million; and Jim Ferraro, the owner of the Cleveland Gladiators, an Arena Football League team, $725,000. Kosar is the team’s president.

Other major unsecured creditors include Tampa’s Florida Bank, owed about $9.7 million over some sour real estate investments, and Key Bank of Cleveland, owed $3.1 million.

This considerable amount of debt is, by all means, closely tied to Kosar’s bizarre 2007 divorce with his wife Babette, who accused Kosar of erratic behavior and several addictions (a charge Kosar denies, for what it’s worth). And that divorce, according to Kosar, was closely tied to the $60 million sale of a company he owned (no telling how much of that she walked away with).

But then again, none of this is entirely unexpected; just a year ago, Kosar was getting warned by the IRS (particularly humorless characters, they) to pay his owed taxes

It’s always strange to see athletes off the field creating legacies unrelated to their playing days, especially if they’re not positive ones. Why must Kosar be the disgraced businessman? Why can’t he be just be that one concrete-slow quarterback?

Did we say “slow”? We mean MICHAEL VICK WITH A ROCKETPACK.