About Insight 880

The mission of Insight880 is to offer an athlete’s perspective on the landscape of sports.

In the words of Ray Brown, the site’s founder and creator: The seed for this blog was a New York Times article I read about the death of Bobby Phills, a Charlotte Hornets basketball player. One day as he left practice he had an impromptu “drag race” with a teammate. Tragically, he lost control of his car and died.

I was troubled by the tone of the article. In short, the author attributed Phills’ death to “immaturity” and “an addiction to adrenaline.” The article was disrespectful. It made me so upset I wrote a letter to the editor which was published.

The memory of the coverage of Phill’s death and numerous other misrepresentation of issues in the press led me to launch Insight880. The site stems from a fundamental truth: Most sportswriters “never played the game.”

A lack of experiences as a professional athlete limits a sports writer’s ability to convey the true essence of their topic. On the other hand, it is imperative for pregame hosts and game announcers to have All-Star credentials to earn their jobs.

The launch of the web magazine The Players’ Tribune validates a market exists where athletes can tell their stories directly to the fans. Insight880 builds on this notion. As an athlete, sports parent, coach, teacher, track agent, and Wall Street executive, Ray Brown brings a breadth of experience to his stories.

Welcome to the intersection of impactful online reportage with an elite athlete’s perspective. Welcome to Insight 880.

Ray Brown

Ray Brown completed his high school running career as the USA High School Junior National Champion for 800 meters in 1980. He went on to star for the University of Virginia, where he won two-time ACC 800M championships, recognized three-times as an All-American, and voted the UVA Scholar-Athlete of the Year. His college career was ultimately recognized by inclusion to the ACC’s 50th Anniversary team for indoor and outdoor track and field.

Post college, Ray ran professionally for Nike. He won six USA Track and Field Indoor National Champion in the 800 meters and represented the USA on twelve national teams. In the 1989 USA Indoor National Championships, he was voted the meet’s Most Outstanding Performer. Ray is considered one of the best American middle distance runners of his era.

Following his retirement from elite competition, Ray worked for Gold Medal Management where he was an agent for Olympic track and field athletes. He maintained advisory relationships with World Record Holders Michael Johnson, Dan O’Brien, Mike Powell and Butch Reynolds.

Ray earned his MBA from the UVA Darden Graduate School of Business Administration. He went on to work for Lehman Brothers and Smith Barney as a Private Wealth Advisor that advised clients on 10B5-1 transactions, portfolio diversification and many other wealth preservation strategies.

In Ray’s words, “My corporate career reconciled the lessons from my career as an athlete. These varied experiences provide clarity to both worlds. This makes me conversant in the language of the board room and the playing field. Not much gets past me.” 

Ray Brown lives in New York City with his wife and two teenage sons.