SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) – Super agent Leigh Steinberg was recently in San Diego speaking at USD and SDSU promoting his new book, "The Agent."
Steinberg's book covers a myriad of topics.
"I wrote it to talk about a different style of sports agentry," he said.
That being a focus on the athlete's second career, and his community involvement.
"When you have Lennox Lewis do a public service announcement that says 'Real men don't hit women,' it can do more to trigger adolescents' attitudes than a thousand authoritative figures," Steinberg said.
Since he was ASB president at Cal in 1970, Steinberg has always been larger than life and ahead of the times.
"The football helmet today guards against a skull fracture, it doesn't stop a concussion," he said.
Concussions have been the hot topic in recent times, but Steinberg has been rallying for safer head gear since the 1980s.
"I now believe every time an offensive lineman hits a defensive lineman at the inception of every play it produces a low-level sub-concussive event," he said. "The aggregate of that is much worse than being knocked out three times."
The book talks about 1993, when he gave filmmaker Cameron Crowe full access to his life as a sports agent, which Crowe then used to make "Jerry Maguire."
"It was an interesting experience, and I hope it humanizes the concept of sports agents for people," Steinberg said.
The list of Steinberg's big-name clients is long, and includes one in San Diego: former Chargers quarterback Ryan Leaf.
Steinberg says Leaf didn't pan out because he went into a shell when adversity hit.
Then he had the bad fortune in the locker room of yelling at a reporter," he said.
He likens that clip to the one that sent Howard Dean's political career down the drain.
Steinberg also talks about his battle with alcohol, hitting bottom when he sat in his father's bedroom with a bottle of vodka contemplating his dad's two core values.
"One was to treasure relationships, especially family. The second was to try to make a difference in the world in a positive way. So it was an epiphany I wasn't doing either," he said.
He worked a 12-step program and is now four years continuously sober. His current pursuit in life is to impact the next generation.
"The ability to mentor younger people, to bring a new generation into the field with ethics and ideals is something I would like to pass on," Steinberg said.