Marshall Holman

Marshall Holman (born September 29, 1954) is an American sports broadcaster and retired professional ten-pin bowler. He was known for his flamboyant, fiery demeanor and his success on the PBA Tour from the mid-1970s to the end of the 1980s. He is one of only 16 players in history to reach at least 20 career PBA Tour titles. Holman was sponsored by Columbia 300 and Nike.[1]

Marshall Holman
Born (1954-09-29) September 29, 1954 (age 66)
Years active1975-1996 (competition)
1996-present (broadcasting)
Height5 ft 9 in (175 cm)
Bowling Information
Dominant handright
Wins22 PBA Tour (4 majors)
SponsorsNike, Columbia 300

The first bowler on the PBA Tour to surpass $1.5 million in earnings, Holman won 22 titles (12th all-time), including four majors (two U.S. Opens and two Tournament of Champions titles).

Bowling careerEdit


Holman's first PBA title came at the Fresno Open on July 8, 1975, when he was just 20 years old. He became the youngest winner in the Tournament of Champions, topping the field in the 1976 event when he was just 21 years old.[2] Holman would hold this record all the way up until 2016, when Jesper Svensson won that year's Tournament of Champions as a 20-year-old.[3] In 1979, Holman became the youngest bowler (24) to reach ten career titles.[4] That record would later be broken by Pete Weber in 1987.


After going without a title in the 1980 season, Holman roared back with three titles in 1981, including his second major at the BPAA U.S. Open. One of the reasons Holman did not win any titles in 1980 was an incident at a tournament that June, when he kicked (and broke) the foul light on his lane out of frustration with his game, netting him a $2500 fine and a 10-tournament suspension.[5] Before the decade was out, Holman would win his second U.S. Open (1985) and second Firestone Tournament of Champions (1986). He and partner Mark Roth won their third PBA Doubles title in 1984. So dominant were the pair in doubles tournaments, the PBA has hosted an annual event since 2015 called the Roth-Holman Doubles Championship.

Marshall was named PBA Player of the Year in 1987, despite not winning a title. However, he did lead the 1987 Tour in average and a few other statistical categories.

Later careerEdit

Holman's 22nd PBA title was earned at the 1996 PBA Ebonite Classic. This came eight years after he had last won on the PBA Tour. In this event, he defeated Wayne Webb, 246–235, in what turned out to be a very emotional battle that came down to the final frames. After Holman converted the tenth frame spare he needed to secure victory, the 42-year old exclaimed, "I'm back, baby, I'm back!" However, this would be his last title on Tour, as well as his last appearance in the televised finals.[6]

Holman was a three-time winner of the George Young High Average award (1982, 1984 and 1987), and has earned nearly $1.7 million on tour.[7] Perhaps more impressive than his 22 titles, Holman made it to the final championship match 53 times (finishing runner-up 31 times) and had 63 more top-five finishes, for a total of 116 championship round appearances.[8]

He was inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame in 1990 and into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame in 2001. In 2006, he was inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.[9] He is also a 2010 inductee to the USBC Hall of Fame in the Performance category.[10] He was ranked 9th on the PBA's 2008 list of "50 Greatest Players of the Last 50 Years."

Holman indicated in a 2017 interview that he is retired from competitive bowling and does not anticipate taking part in any more PBA senior events.[11]

PBA Tour titlesEdit

Major championships are in bold type.

  1. 1975 Fresno Open (Fresno, California)
  2. 1975 Hawaiian Invitational (Honolulu, Hawaii)
  3. 1976 Firestone Tournament of Champions (Akron, Ohio)
  4. 1977 PBA Doubles Classic w/Mark Roth (San Jose, California)
  5. 1977 Brunswick World Open (Glendale Heights, Illinois)
  6. 1978 Ford Open (Alameda, California)
  7. 1978 Northern Ohio Open (Fairview Park, Ohio)
  8. 1979 Quaker State Open (Grand Prairie, Texas)
  9. 1979 Columbia PBA Doubles Classic w/Mark Roth (San Jose, California)
  10. 1979 Seattle Open (Seattle, Washington)
  11. 1979 Brunswick Memorial World Open (Deerfield, Illinois)
  12. 1981 Quaker State Open (Grand Prairie, Texas)
  13. 1981 BPAA U.S. Open (Houston, Texas)
  14. 1981 King Louie Open (Overland Park, Kansas)
  15. 1983 Aqua Fest Mr. Gatti’s Open (Austin, Texas)
  16. 1983 Venice Open (Venice, Florida)
  17. 1984 Showboat Doubles Classic w/Mark Roth (Las Vegas, Nevada)
  18. 1985 BPAA U.S. Open (Venice, Florida)
  19. 1985 Kodak Invitational (Rochester, New York)
  20. 1986 Firestone Tournament of Champions (Akron, Ohio)
  21. 1988 Bowlers Journal Florida Open (Venice, Florida)
  22. 1996 Ebonite Classic (Troy, Michigan)


Holman served as a color analyst alongside Mike Durbin on several ESPN and ESPN2 bowling telecasts from 1996–2001. From 1998-99, he worked for CBS Sports and was teamed with Gary Seibel for telecasts when that network briefly showed PBA events.

After several years out of the booth, Holman has returned to the broadcasting arena. He served as a color analyst at the 2007 USBC Queens tournament and was in the broadcast booth (along with Nelson Burton, Jr.) for ESPN's five-week coverage of the 2007 and 2008 U.S. Women's Open events. He later provided commentary, alongside play-by-play man Dave Ryan, for the 2009 U.S. Women's Open telecasts. Holman was also the analyst for the live broadcast of the 2015 Men's U.S. Open, which ran on CBS Sports Network that season, and has appeared as an analyst at several Roth-Holman Doubles telecasts since then.


At age 4, Holman moved to the city of Medford, Oregon. His father, Phil, was a morning DJ at radio station KBOY (now KEZX) in Medford. He was nicknamed "Holman the Poleman", as he once did a radio show while pole sitting in 1959. Marshall was then dubbed a similar nickname "Holman the Bowlman", as well as "Medford Meteor"; color analyst Nelson Burton, Jr. provided this information during a PBA Tour telecast on ABC on February 2, 1985.

Earlier in his bowling career, as once mentioned in the American Bowlers Journal magazine in the 1980s, Holman had a girlfriend from the state of New Hampshire. He would occasionally try the sport of candlepin bowling, popular in his acquaintance's state of residence, while visiting there.

For several years after retiring as a full-time PBA member, Holman continued to receive commissioner's exemptions to participate in the PBA's Medford Classic. Holman is currently the marketing director at Diamondback Wines.[12]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Burns Shoes Blog". Retrieved 2012-01-15.
  2. ^ Thomas, Jason. "Top 10 Moments in T of C History." Article at on August 16, 2010.[1]
  3. ^ "Jesper Svensson Becomes Youngest Tournament of Champions Winner". February 28, 2016. Retrieved March 4, 2016.
  4. ^ 1979 Seattle Open at
  5. ^
  6. ^ Trower, Tim (January 6, 2002). "Hall of Famer Marshall Holman to take to the lanes again". Retrieved March 9, 2021.
  7. ^ Hall of Fame bios at, official website of the Professional Bowlers Association and Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour
  8. ^ "Marshall Holman (career stats)". Retrieved 2021-02-03.
  9. ^ "Inducted Members - Marshall Holman". Retrieved 2021-03-09.
  10. ^
  11. ^ Len Nicholson. Phantom Radio.
  12. ^ Bob Wechsler (2008). Day by Day in Jewish Sports History (February 6). ISBN 9781602800137. Retrieved 2012-01-15.