As a professional boxer, Sean Carrigan relied on self-confidence and self-discipline, according to his trainer and father, Pat Carrigan.

The self-confidence helped the younger Carrigan -- a former George Mason University wrestler -- beat out a mansion full of contestants on the NBC reality show "Next Action Star," thus winning a starring role in an NBC made-for-TV movie. And the self-discipline helped the one-time Virginia state amateur heavyweight boxing champion keep from blabbing to his friends from May of 2003 -- when the show finished taping -- until Wednesday night, when the finale finally aired.

"I prodded him and prodded him and tried to get it out of him, but I've never had so many evasive answers," said Pat Carrigan, who trained his four sons in his Vienna gym.

In the movie, "Bet Your Life," which NBC will show Wednesday night, Carrigan plays a former pro football quarterback. But after spending the past two days scanning several hours worth of voice mail messages and taping an "Inside Edition" appearance, he was ready to put his athletic exploits behind him.

"Winning a role in a movie beats getting a knockout any day, as far as I'm concerned," he said. "This is the beginning of hopefully a long career, and this is something that I want to work on for the rest of my life."

-- Dan Steinberg

SEAN CARRIGAN