25 Rich Athletes Who Went Broke

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25. Raghib “Rocket” Ismael

25. Raghib "Rocket" Ismael

Notre Dame/Dallas Cowboys star; received the largest 3-year deal in football history
Estimated lifetime earnings: $20 Million

No jail time, drug charges or bankruptcy here, just bad business moves. Financial vultures bled Ismael’s riches by selling him their “fool-proof” investments. After bypassing the NFL as the presumptive #1 pick, Ismael went to the Canadian Football League and signed the largest deal in their history.

He played two years in Canada and 10 in the NFL, earning an estimated $18 million to $20 million in salary alone. He then started to invest in a series of ventures that went bust, including a Rock n’ Roll Café, COZ Records, a movie, cosmetics, nationwide phone-card dispensers, and calligraphy proverbs kiosks.

Today, Ismael does a sports talk show for the Dallas Cowboys—and looks very closely at any money he makes.

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25. Raghib “Rocket” Ismael

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Written by Drea Knufken

Drea Knufken

Currently, I create and execute content- and PR strategies for clients, including thought leadership and messaging. I also ghostwrite and produce press releases, white papers, case studies and other collateral.