Mark Ingram's story always includes one specific detail: his father, Mark Sr., is in prison, the result of one conviction for bank fraud and a subsequent one for attempted escape. But the elder Ingram is still in contact with his son, and ESPN's Suzy Kolber facilitated some of that contact just after the younger Ingram was picked in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints.
Prepare your tissues.
"I'm so proud of how far you've come" caps the email; "I miss you, dog" is the heart of Ingram's tearful response. And you can see how everything hits the Alabama product and 2009 Heisman Trophy winner, too: it's a great TV moment.
ESPN's NFL Draft coverage is always hit-and-miss: using Jon Gruden to growl at people goes over about as well as Chris Berman's pun-heavy approach. But the occasional moment like this one with Ingram is enough to compensate for a lot of viewers, and this coming near the end of the first round livened up a primetime showcase that dragged at times.