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The Fighting Donovans

The Boxing and Football Family of Mike Donovan, Arthur Donovan, Sr. and Arthur Donovan, Jr.

by Art Donovan with Kristine Setting Clark

Back in the glory days of football, before prime time, big money and Astroturf, Baltimore Colt and Hall of Fame guard Art Donovan was one of the all-time gridiron greats. But what most people don’t know is his connection to professional boxing. Not only did Art train to be a boxing champion, but his father and grandfather were also well known in the boxing ring.

All three Donovans are in the Hall of Fame; Mike and Arthur Donovan, Sr. are in the Pro Boxing Hall of Fame, and Art Donovan, Jr. is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

His grandfather, Mike O’Donovan (the O’ was dropped later), was the middleweight champion of the world and sparring partner of Teddy Roosevelt. His father, Art Donovan, Sr., was a high-caliber referee who refereed twenty of Joe Louis’s fights, including both Schmelling fights.

Now, yesterday’s legend and today’s personality speaks his mind in this hilarious, no-holds-barred account that tells you how it was ‘back in the day,’ with outrageous humor, earthy irreverence, and down and dirty insight to the professional sports of boxing and football.

Donovan’s recollection of the ‘good ol’ days’ is as close as most of us will ever get to sitting ringside or on the team bench, opening a few cool ones and listening to the big guys talk about the legendary wars and warriors of boxing and football’s golden years.

So belly up to the bar boys, as Artie is buyin’!
The Fighting Donovans

About the Authors

Art Donovan

Art Donovan began his professional football career in 1950 as a 26-year-old rookie with the Baltimore Colts of the AAFC. He played for Boston College after serving in the Marines during World War II. Donovan was an All-NFL defensive tackle from 1954 through 1958 and played in five Pro Bowls. He was also a vital part of Baltimore’s climb to the 1958 and 1959 championship seasons. Art is the son of world-famous boxing referee, Arthur Donovan, Sr., and the grandson of former middleweight champion and personal trainer to President Teddy Roosevelt, Professor Mike O’ Donovan. Art was the first Colt to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1968. He lives in Baltimore with his wife of 56 years, Dottie. They have five children and seven grandchildren.


Kristine Setting Clark

Dr. Kristine Setting Clark is a San Francisco State University and University of San Francisco graduate, Pro Football Hall of Fame author, and a feature writer for the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys Gameday Magazines. She has authored and co-authored seven other books. Clark lives in northern California and has two grown children and four grandsons.


Publication Date
October 2013
16 page photo insert
Trim Size
6”x 9” Hard cover with full color dust jacket.
Page Count
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