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Sports Spectrum Podcast

Hosted by former ESPN Senior Producer Jason Romano, Sports Spectrum is an interview driven podcast that features stories on the intersection of sports and faith.
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Now displaying: 2018
Dec 31, 2018

Dansby Swanson was the first overall selection in the 2015 MLB Amateur Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks. In December 2015, he was traded to the Atlanta Braves. 

He played his college ball at Vanderbilt where he was named the 2014 College World Series Most Valuable Player after helping lead his club to the title. 

He made his MLB debut on August 17,2016 and became the Braves every day shortstop in 2017. Last year, he hit a career-high 14 home runs and played great defense with a .981 fielding percentage in 133 games.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Dansby about the wrist injury he suffered at the end of 2018, get an update on how his recovery is going, learn about his faith journey, why prayer is essential to his spiritual life, and great stories on one of his heroes Derek Jeter, and the day he made his MLB debut. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 28, 2018

Rich Wingo played linebacker for the Alabama Crimson Tide from 1976-78. He was selected in the 7th round of the 1979 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers, where he would play 6 seasons at Lambeau Field from 1979-1984. 

A former assistant coach with the Crimson Tide from 1987-89, Wingo was part of that 1978 Alabama national championship team that won the Sugar Bowl on January 1, 1979 and famously stopped Penn State in a fourth quarter goal line stand to ultimately prevail 14-7. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Rich about this current Alabama team of 2018 and how good they really are. We also hear Rich's powerful testimony of coming to faith in Christ while he was playing in the NFL with the Packers. Wingo also shares the story of his college coach "Bear" Bryant kicking him off the 1977 team and the amazing lesson he learned from that incident. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 27, 2018

Every Sunday during Autumn, millions tune into the NFL Red Zone Channel to watch the National Football League. The man who leads the charge on that show is Scott Hanson from the NFL Network.

The Syracuse graduate has been with the NFL Network since 2006.

In this #ThrowbackThursday edition of the podcast, we hear the i amazing story of how he came to faith in Christ, the movie that he rented that changed his life and why he believes his faith is the greatest fact in his life.

You can listen to the entire interview with Scott on Episode 37 here

Dec 26, 2018

Jacie Hoyt is in her second season as the head coach of the University of Missouri-Kansas City women's basketball team. She is the youngest Division One coach in women's basketball. 

From 2014-2017, Jacie was an assistant coach with Kansas State. Prior to that, from 2011-2014, she was an assistant coach at the University of Nevada. 

Her basketball career began in Kansas, playing for her mother, legendary high school coach Shelly Hoyt, where she scored 2,016 career points in just 3 seasons for Hoxie High School and was a 3-time all-state performer.  

She earned a scholarship to Wichita State where she was a team captain point guard from 2006-2009.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Jacie about her basketball journey, what she learned from the successes and failures, becoming the head coach at UMKC, the biggest differences in being a head coach from being an assistant, and and how her faith in Christ has shaped it all. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 24, 2018

D'Brickashaw Ferguson played 10 seasons in the NFL from 2006-2015, all with the New York Jets. He was selected 4th overall in the 2005 draft after playing college football at the University of Virginia.

He announced his retirement from football in April of 2016 at the age of 33.

In his decade of football, Ferguson played and started in every game of his career. He played in 10,707 out of 10,708 offensive snaps and was named to 3 Pro Bowls.

Married to his wife Kirsten, the couple has 2 daughters.

In part 2 of our two-part podcast, D'Brickashaw and Kirsten share the difficulties they walked through trying to become parents, what they learned from God in that process, how they bring faith now into parenting their 2 little girls, and what Sundays now look like after retiring from football.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 24, 2018

D'Brickashaw Ferguson played 10 seasons in the NFL from 2006-2015, all with the New York Jets. He was selected 4th overall in the 2005 draft after playing college football at the University of Virginia.

He announced his retirement from football in April of 2016 at the age of 33.

In his decade of football, Ferguson played and started in every game of his career. He played in 10,707 out of 10,708 offensive snaps and was named to 3 Pro Bowls.

Married to his wife Kirsten, the couple has 2 daughters.

In part 1 of our two-part podcast, D'Brickashaw and Kirsten share what life in retirement is like and where their faith journey began.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 21, 2018

Dave Frey is the lead singer for the band Sidewalk Prophets since 2001. Since then, the band has released three major studio albums and five #1 hits including "You Love Me Anyway," "The Words I Would Say," "Live Like That" and "Come to the Table."

A die-hard sports fan, Frey carries allegiances to the Indianapolis Colts and the Chicago Cubs. Dave was able to celebrate his team's 2016 World Series championship at Wrigley Field attending Game 6 in person.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Dave about touring on the road, hearing his music on the radio for the first time, his love for sports, attending the 2016 World Series and what his ultimate sports meets music moment was for him.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 20, 2018

Tommy Kyle is the Executive Director of the Nations of Coaches in Alabama. Tommy has served with Nations of Coaches since 2008. As executive director, he oversees the implementation of Nations of Coaches’ core vision: to help coaches achieve their higher calling of shaping the character of the next generation of young men.

Kyle played basketball collegiately at Tennessee Temple University, where he first began working with SCORE International – a global sports ministry that reaches the nations for Christ through short-term mission trips. Kyle later worked full-time with SCORE as the national college basketball director. Between 1996 and 2007, Kyle served as the head boys basketball coach at Decatur Heritage Christian Academy, where he led the Golden Eagles to three trips to the state basketball’s final four and won five area titles.

The Nations of Coaches works with 3,500+ basketball coaches by helping their players make the connection between character and sport – equipping and encouraging them with the resources they need to build young men of high character and ultimately play and coach for the Master Coach -- Jesus. 

On this episode of the podcast, Tommy shares how the Nations of Coaches is helping to equip some of college basketball's biggest coaching names, why the ministry started, how Tommy became a part of it, and what the biggest spiritual battles and challenges are for college basketball coaches who are following Christ.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 18, 2018

Dan Naulty pitched for 4 seasons in Major League Baseball with the Twins and Yankees from 1996-1999. He was a member of the 1999 World Series championship team with the Bronx Bombers.

He was selected in the 14th round of the 1992 MLB Draft by the Twins out of Cal State Fullerton where he played in the 1992 College World Series.

Naulty was part of the steroid era of baseball and admittedly chose to use steroids, which helped him bulk up from 180 pounds in college to 245 pounds when he reached the Big Leagues.

Ironically after winning the World Series, Naulty reached his lowest point and began to have thoughts of suicide. Not long after, Dan turned to his faith and found new purpose in ministry. He's now the pastor of Faith Presbyterian Church in Jenison, Michigan.

 

In part 2, Dan shares his testimony, how he came to Christ, the moment he stopped using steroids, and how a celebration after winning the 1999 World Series with the Yankees led him to a place of desperation and ultimately how the switch flipped back to a full commitment to Christ.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 18, 2018

Dan Naulty pitched for 4 seasons in Major League Baseball with the Twins and Yankees from 1996-1999. He was a member of the 1999 World Series championship team with the Bronx Bombers.

He was selected in the 14th round of the 1992 MLB Draft by the Twins out of Cal State Fullerton where he played in the 1992 College World Series.

Naulty was part of the steroid era of baseball and admittedly chose to use steroids, which helped him bulk up from 180 pounds in college to 245 pounds when he reached the Big Leagues.

Ironically after winning the World Series, Naulty reached his lowest point and began to have thoughts of suicide. Not long after, Dan turned to his faith and found new purpose in ministry. He's now the pastor of Faith Presbyterian Church in Jenison, Michigan.

In part 1 of our two part conversation, Naulty shares about becoming a pastor, abuse that he suffered growing up, how that shaped him as a person and an athlete, turning to steroids to help him reach the Majors, and how he views elite players from the steroid era as they are considered for the Hall of Fame.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 17, 2018

Jeff Saturday played 13 seasons in the NFL with the Colts (1999-2011) and Packers (2012). After retirement, Saturday joined ESPN as an NFL analyst in 2013 where he remains today providing analysis for shows such as NFL LIVE and SportsCenter.

Though he entered the league as an undrafted free agent, Saturday was a fixture on the Colts teams that won Super Bowl XLI and represented the AFC in Super Bowl XLIV. The Sporting News named him to the NFL All-Decade Team (2000-09) and he achieved first-team All-Pro honors twice (2005, 2007).

Over a decade-long period with the Colts, Saturday anchored an offensive line that allowed the fewest sacks in the league (242), and his 132 career wins as a Colt are second only to Peyton Manning (141) in franchise history. Together, Saturday and Manning started an NFL record 172 games as a center-quarterback duo.

In January of 2017, Jeff added "coach" to his impressive resume, becoming the head man for Hebron Christian Academy's high school football team in Dacula, Georgia. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Jeff about the adjustment from playing football to talking about football and now coaching football, where his faith in Jesus was rooted, the influence Tony Dungy had on his life, his favorite Peyton Manning story and his biggest spiritual battle during his time as an NFL player. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 14, 2018

Trinea Gonczar is a former gymnast and a longtime family friend of Dr. Larry Nassar.

Nasser, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor and osteopathic physician at Michigan State University, committed criminal acts of sexual assault, that were the basis of the USA Gymnastics sex abuse scandal, in which he was accused of molesting at least 250 girls and young women and 1 young man including a number of well-known Olympic gymnasts, dating as far back as 1992.

Trinea was one of those gymnasts, and came forward to share her emotional testimony in January of 2018 at Nassar's sentencing.

On January 24, Ingham County Circuit Court Judge Rosemarie Aquilina sentenced Nassar to 40 to 175 years in prison for the sexual assault of minor.

Gonczar is now working with WC Safe, an organization that provides those affected by sexual assault with immediate and ongoing comprehensive services, at no cost, that encourage survivor healing and empowerment and provides compassionate and trauma-informed care to survivors of sexual assault throughout Wayne County in Michigan.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Trinea about her relationship with Nassar, when she began to realize something wasn't right, her powerful statement she shared with Nassar, becoming an advocate for sexual abuse and what changes she'd like to see with the USAG.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 13, 2018

Hunter Renfrow plays wide receiver for the Clemson Tigers football team.

In January of 2017, Renfrow caught a 2-yard touchdown pass from Deshaun Watson to lift the Tigers to the National Championship, beating Alabama 35-31. 

Last season, Renfrow as named Third-Team All-ACC after catching 60 passes for 602 yards and three touchdowns in leading Clemson back to the College Football playoff. 

On this #ThrowbackThursday edition of the podcast, we hear Hunter's faith testimony and when he made Christ the Lord of his life. We also hear a great story that Hunter shares on Coach Dabo Swinney and the example he is as a Christian head coach. 

You can listen to the entire interview with Hunter Renfrow in Episode 9 of our podcast here

 

Dec 12, 2018

Ted Scott is the caddy to PGA Tour Bubba Watson. He's been a caddy for 18 years on the PGA Tour working with golfers such as Fred Funk, Grant Waite, John Cook and Paul Azinger.

In 2006, Ted and Bubba began working together and they've been together ever since.

On this episode of the podcast, Ted shares what life as a caddy on the PGA Tour is like, how he came to work with Bubba Watson, where his faith in Christ began, what it was like to be a part of two Masters titles, what faith looks like on the PGA Tour and how he stays grounded in the Lord. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 11, 2018

Bobby Robins is a retired professional ice hockey player who finished his career with the Boston Bruins Organization. He played professionally in many leagues across the world including the National Hockey League, American Hockey League, East Coast Hockey League, and stints in the Elite Ice Hockey League in the United Kingdom and the Erste Bank Ice Hockey League in Austria.

He retired in 2015 after a concussion forced him out of the game. Robins skated in over 500 professional hockey games and have over 150 professional fights.

Robins holds a place in the history books as the oldest rookie to make an NHL Opening Day Roster with the Boston Bruins at age 32, after 8 seasons in the minor leagues.

 

In part 2 of our podcast, Bobby shares his incredible story of depression, drugs and coming to faith in Christ. He also tells us why he decided to use his Twitter page as a place to share his faith by reading the Bible in a year LIVE online. The story he tells here is powerful.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 10, 2018

Bobby Robins is a retired professional ice hockey player who finished his career with the Boston Bruins Organization. He played professionally in many leagues across the world including the National Hockey League, American Hockey League, East Coast Hockey League, and stints in the Elite Ice Hockey League in the United Kingdom and the Erste Bank Ice Hockey League in Austria. 

He retired in 2015 after a concussion forced him out of the game. Robins skated in over 500 professional hockey games and have over 150 professional fights.

Robins holds a place in the history books as the oldest rookie to make an NHL Opening Day Roster with the Boston Bruins at age 32, after 8 seasons in the minor leagues. 

In part 1 of our podcast, Bobby shares how he became a pro hockey player, fighting in hockey, the worst fight he had been in, making his NHL debut at age 32 and why his faith began to fade during his hockey career. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 7, 2018

Chris Burke was selected in the first round of the 2001 MLB Draft (10th overall) by the Houston Astros. The University of Tennessee product was named Round Rock AA MVP in 2003 and then won the Pacific Coast League Rookie of the Year in AAA with the New Orleans Zephyrs in 2004.

Burke would make his MLB debut on July 4, 2004 against the Texas Rangers and would get his first MLB hit on September 14, 2004 against the Cardinals. 

In 2005, Chris Burke became a hero to the Houston Astros faithful as he would hit a walk-off, series ending home run in the 18 inning marathon that was Game 4 of the National League Division Series against Atlanta.

On this episode of the podcast, we get Chris' thoughts on the 2018 Boston Red Sox, throwing out the first pitch of Game 4 of the 2018 ALCS, meeting Christian singer Tauren Wells, where his faith in Christ was rooted for him and what it was like to hit a NLDS series ending, walk-off home run in 2005 for Houston. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 6, 2018

Mo Isom’s story is one that you will not soon forget. She is wife, a mother, a speaker and the author of the New York Times Bestseller “WRECK MY LIFE: Journeying from Broken to Bold.”

She was an All-American goalkeeper for the Louisiana State University soccer team and the first female to try out for an SEC men’s football team. She holds the LSU all-time goalkeeper record as well as the #3 SEC all-time shutout record.

Mo's latest book "Sex, Jesus, and the Conversations the Church Forgot" released in March of 2018. 

In this Throwback Thursday edition of the podcast, Mo shares the very emotional story of her father's death in 2009. 

To listen to the entire interview, please click on Episode 4 of the podcast here

 

 

Dec 5, 2018

George Taylor is the CEO of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association based in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

He was named to his current role in January 2018 where he oversees  650 top-of-the-line multiple-event rodeos across the country and in Canada. 

On this episode of the podcast, we learn about the rodeo, how faith plays a role in each rodeo event, how the cowboys are ministered to and who the LeBron James of the pro rodeo tour is. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 4, 2018

For 28 years, Gene Chizik coached college football. He began his career at Clemson and after stints with Middle Tennessee, Stephen F. Austin,  Central Florida, Auburn, and Texas, he got his first shot as a head coach with Iowa State in 2007. Two years later, he became the head coach of the Auburn Tigers, and in 2010, reached the pinnacle of college football, winning the BCS National Championship, defeating Oregon 22-19.

Chizik spent 4 seasons with the Tigers before his time ended in 2012. In 2015, he returned to coaching as the defensive coordinator of the North Carolina Tar Heels for two seasons.

In 2016, he was named an analyst for ESPN and the SEC Network, where he remains today.

In part 2 of our podcast, Gene Chizik shares what it was like to win a National Championship, what it was like to coach Cam Newton, the rivalry with Alabama that is the Iron Bowl, what that coaching grind is like, and whether he wants to coach again.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Dec 3, 2018

For 28 years, Gene Chizik coached college football. He began his career at Clemson and after stints with Middle Tennessee, Stephen F. Austin,  Central Florida, Auburn, and Texas, he got his first shot as a head coach with Iowa State in 2007. Two years later, he became the head coach of the Auburn Tigers, and in 2010, reached the pinnacle of college football, winning the BCS National Championship, defeating Oregon 22-19.

Chizik spent 4 seasons with the Tigers before his time ended in 2012. In 2015, he returned to coaching as the defensive coordinator of the North Carolina Tar Heels for two seasons.

In 2016, he was named an analyst for ESPN and the SEC Network, where he remains. 

In part 1 of our podcast, Coach Chizik shares about broadcasting, parenting, his coaching journey, and where his faith in Christ was rooted. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Nov 30, 2018

For four seasons, Jessie Warren played third base for the Florida State Seminoles softball club. The 4-time All ACC player was consistently one of the most productive hitters in the lineup.

In 2018, she led her club to their first ever Women's College World Series title beating Washington. Jessie was named the Most Outstanding Player after leading the team in eight different categories, including a .404 batting average, 21 home runs, 70 RBI and a .836 slugging percentage.

In Game 1 of the WCWS, she made the play of the year in college softball, snagging a seventh-inning sacrifice bunt attempt on a diving catch to preserve their 1-0 victory. That catch was the No. 1 play on ESPN’s SportsCenter Top Plays and even got the attention of people like Kobe Bryant on Twitter.

Her final game with Florida State, Jessie went 3-4 with a home run and 2 RBI to help the Seminoles to an 8-3 victory and their first ever NCAA National Championship.

After her college career ended, Warren was selected seventh overall in the National Pro Fastpitch Draft by the USSSA Pride where she helped her team to another title, the Cowles Cup championship, defeating the Chicago Bandits 4-0.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Jessie about 2018, winning the National Championship, dealing with fame, where her walk with Christ began, the spiritual bond that her Seminoles team built during their run to the title, and what the Lord is teaching her right now after an incredible year.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Nov 29, 2018

Jared Dudley is a forward for the NBA's Brooklyn Nets. 

A second-team All-American for Boston College, Dudley was the 2007 ACC player of the year and the 22nd overall selection by the Charlotte Bobcats (now Hornets) in the 2007 NBA Draft.

His 12-year NBA career has spanned 6 teams, the Bobcats, Suns, Bucks, Wizards, Clippers and now Nets. 

On this Throwback Thursday edition of the podcast, we hear Jared's testimony of coming to faith in Christ and where that walk with the Lord began for him. 

You can listen to the entire interview of Episode 12 of the podcast here

Nov 28, 2018

Jesse Holley played wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys from 2009-2011. He was a two-sport athlete at North Carolina where he played wide receiver for the football team and was a member of the 2005 basketball team that won college basketball's national championship.

In 2007, after going undrafted, he signed with the Cincinnati Bengals and after being waived, he moved to Canada, signing a contract with the BC Lions of the CFL.

In 2009, after his football career looked to be over, Holley became part of the SPIKE TV reality show 4th and Long, hosted by Cowboys Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin where he won the competition and received an invitation to Cowboys training camp.

After being released in September of 2009 as part of the final cuts, Holley was placed on the team's practice squad, where he would remain for 2009 and part of 2010.

He made his NFL debut on October 17, 2010 against the Vikings. He would finish the 2010 season with 16 special teams tackles.

In 2011, he made the 53-man roster and in week 2 at San Francisco, made his first career NFL reception, a 77-yard reception from Tony Romo in overtime, to help the Cowboys beat the 49ers 27-24 in San Francisco.

Holley's NFL run would come to an end a year later and today, he is a commentator in Dallas as well as leading his non-profit "Holley's Helping Hands" in Dallas.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Jesse about his work with Holley's Helping Hands, coming to faith in Christ, the experience of being on a reality TV show and making the Dallas Cowboys and how God worked through his entire life to where he is today.

Click here to donate to Holley's Helping Hands.

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

Nov 26, 2018

Caroline Stanley is a former pro soccer goalkeeper and an assistant coach with the University of Tulsa.

In January of 2018, Stanley retired from professional soccer after playing in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) for the Seattle Reign (2015), Sky Blue New Jersey (2016) and Orlando Pride (2017).

Stanley was a three-year letterwinner at the University of Southern California, after playing her freshman season at the University of Missouri.  She started in 55 of 58 games at USC, and had 245 saves in her career.

Stanley represented the U.S. Youth Women’s National Team as a member of the U15, U17, U18 and U20 teams.  She also played for Lee’s Summit North High School, where she earned back-to-back Goalkeeper of the Year honors from the Missouri State High School Soccer Coaches Association.  Stanley was a two-time first-team all-state honoree and Examiner all-area first-team selection.  She was also a member of the KCFC Intensity, Scream and Pink Panthers club teams, winning four state titles and capturing the 2011 Summer National Championship with KCFC.

Stanley earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology in May 2015 from USC.

In part 2 of our conversation with Caroline, we explore the world of professional soccer as she shares her experience playing in the National Women's Soccer League and the awesome story of her final pro game in Orlando last year. We also hear about her experience coaching with the University of Tulsa, as well as the relationship she has with John Means and watching him make his MLB debut this past September with the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park. 

For more, log on to http://SportsSpectrum.com 

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