National Football League
Dan Orlovsky ’17 is one of the most recognized players in UConn football history, leading the team to victory in it’s first-ever bowl appearance at the 2004 Motor City Bowl. In that 39-10 victory over Toledo, Dan, the starting quarterback, set nearly every passing record imaginable for the Huskies, most of them still standing today. Dan was honored twice as the Walter Camp Connecticut Player of the Year before being drafted by the NFL in 2005.
Dan, who grew up setting athletic records for Shelton High School, was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the fifth round of the NFL Draft and went on to play for the Houston Texans, the Indianapolis Colts and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He recently retired after 12 years in the league.
“I think there is a difference between being a leader and being a good leader,’’ he said. “A good leader is selfishly unselfish…someone who loves what they’re doing, believes in themselves, but is not driven by ego. I think the best leaders are willing to lead and to inspire all the time.’’
Today Dan and his wife Tiffany are the proud parents of triplet 6-year-old boys Hunter, Madden and Noah, as well as a 2-year-old daughter Lennon.
As a UConn student, Dan and his teammates would visit families at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in Hartford. The experience had a profound impact on him, and in 2006 he created the Dan Orlovsky Foundation, a nonprofit designed to enrich the lives of children in need. The Foundation has been a strong supporter of CCMC and designed and built a prominent waiting room there called the Dan Orlovsky Foundation Kids Zone.
Last summer Dan completed his UConn bachelor’s degree, earning a degree in continuing education. He credits friends, family and Head Football Coach Randy Edsall for encouraging him to finish his degree. During his recent time on campus, he has worked as a volunteer with the football team.
“The campus is crazy different aesthetically than when I left in 2005, but it is such a special place for me. It’s wild how things change, but not the emotions. I enjoyed being a Husky and it is fun to return to UConn.’’
Dan is enjoying family time now, but envisions a future career as a football coach or television commentator.