Solomon, Ariel : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Solomon, Ariel

Ariel Mace Solomon

An All-Big Eight performer at the University of Colorado, Solomon helped the Buffalos win the school's first national championship in 1990. Ariel later played in the NFL and participated in the 1996 Super Bowl as a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Solomon is now a loan officer in Boulder.

Birth and Death Dates:
b. July 16, 1968

Career Highlights:
Solomon began at Colorado as a defensive lineman and spent two seasons on defense. In 1989, he moved to the offensive side of the ball and helped the Buffalos become of the best teams in the country. That season, Ariel played primarily as a backup as the Buffalos won all 11 regular season games and went to the Orange Bowl as the Big Eight champs. In the Orange Bowl, No. 1 ranked Colorado could not overcome three missed scoring opportunities in the first half and lost to Notre Dame, 21-6, dropping the Buffalos to No. 4 in the final ranking.

The following year, Solomon was the starting left tackle and had an outstanding season. He played in every game and participated in over 800 plays, more than anyone else on the team. Ariel was named All-Big Eight honorable mention as the Buffalos finished the regular season 10-1-1 and returned to the Orange Bowl in a rematch with Notre Dame. In what is still one of the most talked-about games in recent college football history, Colorado defeated the Irish, 10-9, when Rocket Ismail's 91-yard kickoff return with 43 seconds remaining was nullified on a clipping penalty. Colorado finished the year 11-1-1 and was named national champions by the AP and CNN/USA Today polls (that year, Georgia Tech was UP's national champion).

After graduating with a degree in economics in 1991, Solomon played in the NFL. He was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 10th round (269th overall) of the 1991 NFL Draft and spent five seasons with the team. Ariel played center, guard, and tackle on the Steelers' offensive line (mostly as a backup) and was an outstanding player on special teams. He was a member of the Steelers in 1995 when the team had a record of 11-5-0 and met the Dallas Cowboys in the Super Bowl. Pittsburgh lost the game, 27-17.

The following year, Ariel played for the Minnesota Vikings, who finished the season 9-7-0 and lost in the first round of the playoffs. Ariel retired following that season, having played in 61 NFL career games. Solomon was named honorable mention All-Decade (1990s) at Colorado.

Brooklyn, New York

Career Dates:
Solomon played defensive and offensive line at Colorado from 1987-1990. He played in the NFL with the Pittsburgh Steelers from 1991-1995 and with the Minnesota Vikings in 1996.

Physical description:
6'5", 288 pounds

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Total Football: The Official Encyclopedia of the National Football League, edited by Bob Carroll, Michael Gershman, David Neft, and John Thorn (New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1999)