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NCAA Basketball Closeup: Brady Heslip

There was a time when Baylor University senior guard Brady Heslip’s lifelong dream of playing college basketball was on the fringes. Heslip, considered one of the best three-point shooters in NCAA Division I basketball, transferred from Boston College to Baylor in June of 2010 after then-Boston College head coach Al Skinner was fired. This led Heslip—the Burlington, Ontario, native—from the east coast to central Texas. Forced to sit out a year, Heslip’s future, once certain in Boston, was now in question. What made his future more in question, Heslip knew, was his physical shape. “I was overweight, that’s just plain and simple what it was,” Heslip told The (Toronto) Globe and Mail. Heslip was a kid, and he ate like one and lived like one. He liked junk food. He didn’t take the best care of his body. But he knew he needed to change if he wanted a chance Read More

NBA Closeup: Kevin Durant

Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant and his mentor, Hillsong NYC pastor Carl Lentz, recently dropped by Lifechurch.tv for an interview with pastor Craig Groeschel. Durant and Lentz talked about their friendship and answered questions from Groeschel about growing spiritually. Durant also talked about the importance of leaving a legacy. “I want to be known for serving people,” Durant says. “When people see me, they think I deserve something. I don’t deserve anything. I don’t deserve to be put in the front of the line at the movies or get a free meal, I don’t deserve anything. I think for me, I just wanna go up to people and impact their lives. Whether it’s from me inspiring them from playing basketball or just going up and asking them how their family is doing, that’s what I want to be known as. “Also, a legacy changer. I didn’t grow up with Read More

NFL Closeup: Case Keenum

The Houston Texans have seemingly had a revolving door at quarterback this season, but it has benefited Case Keenum, one of college football’s most prolific passers in history. For Keenum, though, the journey from top to bottom to the top again has been quick and quirky. A year after he rewrote the NCAA record books while playing quarterback at the University of Houston, he went undrafted in the 2012 NFL Draft before signing with the Houston Texans as a free agent. But for Keenum, the NCAA’s all-time record holder in total passing yards (19,217), touchdowns (155), and completions (1,546), as well as the Football Bowl Subdivision’s all-time leader in total offense (20,114), he had to deal with life away from the game while still being part of the team – because he only made the Texans’ practice squad and never saw the field during the 2012 NFL season. So the Read More

NFL Closeup: Ryan Mundy

Ryan Mundy reminds us to make the most of every situation, even if the situation isn’t ideal. Mundy was leading the New York Giants in tackles (42) and had a momentous 91-yard return off an interception (in the Giants’ first game against Dallas) before hurting his hip late in the game against Minnesota on Oct. 22. That resulted in being replaced by strong safety Will Hill, who the Giants believe to be better in coverage. Mundy never got his starting role back. “It’s really frustrating and disappointing,” Mundy told nj.com. “I was leading the team in tackles. I was productive. But at the same time, we still have a lot of games to play. This is bigger than me. We’re making a playoff push right now. I don’t want to be a distraction.” Now, Mundy is playing on special teams for the Giants. Though it’s not where he feels he Read More

Crushing It

It sounds preposterous now—kind of like an era when carbs weren’t counted, phones weren’t smart and people didn’t tweet—but there was a time when Chris Davis considered quitting baseball.

Davis, the Baltimore Orioles’ newly minted superstar, was fed up with the game by 2011. His promising major league debut with the Texas Rangers three years earlier at age 22 was a distant memory. A logjam of talent within the organization and his own inconsistencies at the plate… Continue reading

From the Archives — A Comeback in the Long Run

For even the world’s best athletes, the Olympics represent the chance of a lifetime. Years of sacrifice and training culminate in fleeting minutes, perhaps only seconds, of effort. And then…only one winner stands atop the award platform.

Going for the gold is one thing. Getting it is another. Just ask Jim Ryun.

Though not one, not two, but three Olympiads, he chased the gold. But every time he ran, its glitter remained just beyond his grasp…

Click here to read the remainder of Jim Ryun’s story in the Vol. 3, No. 2 (1989) issue of Sports Spectrum, which was then called Second Look. Continue reading

Devotional of the Week — Swept in the Wind

Who won the Super Bowl last year? How about two years ago? Three? Four? Five? Six? Seven?

If you could name each Super Bowl champion from the last seven years, I would be impressed. But my guess is that recalling the Super Bowl winner from two or three years ago was a struggle. Most people, outside of Indianapolis Colts fans, have forgotten that my teammates and I won a Super Bowl in 2006. That was six years ago… Continue reading

Airing It Out — Sharing our hope

(Originally published in Sports Spectrum’s April 2013 DigiMag)

We heard the same sermon twice on the Wednesday night we went to West Monroe, La.—and both were unexpected.

We had just finished our interview with Miss Kay, Al, Willie and Phil Robertson, cast from the popular TV show, Duck Dynasty. It was interesting listening to Phil talk about sex and relationships, Willie talk about his early days when he and his wife, Korie… Continue reading

From Puppet to Platform

Dylan Thompson had strings.

He moved the right way. He said the right things. He danced across the stage and nailed his lines. He was a shell of a man, a marionette that moved but had no life inside.

One day, the strings broke, his body fell, and he lay all twisted up and lifeless on stage.

The lights went down. And the curtains closed… Continue reading

Uncommon Challenge