Bo Jackson Film Becomes ESPN’s Highest Rated Documentary

A Bo Jackson film has become ESPN’s highest rated documentary on an overnight basis, according to the Nielsen Company.

You Don’t Know Bo, the season finale of ESPN’s 30 for 30 series, earned a handsome 2.3 metered market rating over the weekend to become the cable network’s most popular ever documentary.

You Don’t Know Bo surveyed the life and career of Bo Jackson, the former baseball and football player who was the only athlete ever selected to play in the NFL Pro Bowl and the MLB All-Star Game. It beat The Fab Five, an ESPN Films documentary that premiered to a 2.0 overnight rating on March 13, 2011, to become ESPN’s highest rated documentary.

The film doubtlessly benefited from its slot straight after the Heisman Trophy presentation on Sunday night; as Bo Jackson won the Heisman Trophy in 1985, the juxtaposition felt fitting. It also proved Jackson is an indisputably big draw.

Directed by Michael Bonfiglio and produced by, You Don’t Know Bo looked at the truths and rumors that surrounded Jackson, and how his startling achievements captured the imagination of the entire nation.

ESPN Films executive producer Conner Schell told EURweb:

“A big aspect of Michael’s film is the mythmaking around Bo Jackson, the creation of the marketing campaign, the idea that he was turned into words like ‘superhero,’ ‘a larger than life figure,’ et cetera, that didn’t always reconcile with the man.”

The film proved a hit with critics as well.‘s Matt Scalici remarked:

“One of the most common complaints I’ve seen from the public regarding the 30 for 30 series is that so many of them focus on negative stories, stories that show the worst side of human nature. Whether that’s a fair assessment or not, there’s no placing You Don’t Know Bo in that category. It’s as inspirational and uplifting a film as ESPN has produced yet for this series and one that everyone, not just Auburn fans, can enjoy and take inspiration from.”

Did you catch You Don’t Know Bo over the weekend? If not, you can watch a brief clip below.

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