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Sports Spectrum Podcast

Hosted by former ESPN Senior Producer Jason Romano, and now with over 3.6 million downloads, Sports Spectrum's podcast features stories on the intersection of sports and faith.
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Now displaying: 2018
Oct 22, 2018

Episode 173

Rich Donnelly coached and played professional baseball for 48 seasons. He was signed as a catcher by the Minnesota Twins in 1967 and played for the late, great baseball legend, Ted Williams.

He has spent 25 years as a MLB coach with the Rangers, Pirates, Marlins, Rockies, Brewers, Dodgers and Mariners.

In 2018, he spent time as a coach with the New York Mets minor league affiliate in Brooklyn.

Rich was a member of the 1997 Florida Marlins team that won the World Series. A book on the life of Rich titled "The Chicken Runs at Midnight"released on October 2, 2018 with Zondervan Publishers.

In part 1 of our two-part podcast, Rich Donnelly shares where his baseball journey began, how the story of his daughter Amy and her battle with cancer birthed the phrase "The Chicken Runs at Midnight," and why his faith was incredibly impacted by the circumstances surrounding his daughter's death.

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

Oct 19, 2018

Episode 172

At the age of 15, high school freshman and basketball player avid David Cooks experienced a spinal aneurism, leaving him a T-6 paraplegic. Refusing to let the wheelchair determine the man, he made the decision to persevere from the very beginning - and he never let go of his passion for the game of basketball. 

On this episode of the podcast, author and speaker David Cooks shares shares his inspiring story of becoming a paraplegic, trusting God in the difficult times, overcoming and persevering, meeting legendary hall of fame coach Mike Krzyzewski from Duke and why he decided to tell his story in his new book "Getting Undressed: From Paralysis to Purpose."

For more, log on to https://sportsspectrum.com/category/sports-spectrum-podcast/ 

Oct 17, 2018

Episode 171

Matt Forte played 10 seasons with the Bears and Jets from 2008-2017 and was selected to 2 Pro Bowls. He rushed for 1,000 yards 5 times in his career and is second on Chicago's list of all-time leading rushers behind the great Walter Payton. 

In March of 2017, Forte announced his retirement from football with Sports Spectrum. He's currently working as an NFL analyst covering the Bears for NBC Sports Chicago and spending more time with his wife Danielle and his children.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Matt about life after football, transitioning to the next phase of life, thoughts on Vontae Davis' abrupt halftime retirement, why it's important to be ready to preach God's word wherever you go, and the importance of making time for your wife in sustaining a healthy marriage. 

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

Oct 16, 2018

Episode 170

Will Startup was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 5th round of the 2005 MLB Amateur Draft. He played his college ball at the University of Georgia where he pitched in the 2004 College World Series.

He was a minor league pitcher for 10 season from 2005-2014 with the Braves, Padres, Orioles and Tigers organizations. In 2006, Startup quickly moved through the minor league system and made it all the way to Triple A in Richmond. He did pitch in a Major League spring training, but never made it to the big leagues and finished his pro career in 2014, pitching in one game for Triple-A Toledo (Detroit Tigers organization).

In part 2 of this two-part episode of the podcast, Will continues to share the emotional and powerful story of his son Copeland. He also takes us to the moment in 2018 when he was finally able to make his Major League Baseball debut, but not in the way you think.

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

Oct 15, 2018

Episode 169

Will Startup was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 5th round of the 2005 MLB Amateur Draft. He played his college ball at the University of Georgia where he pitched in the 2004 College World Series.

He was a minor league pitcher for 10 season from 2005-2014 with the Braves, Padres, Orioles and Tigers organizations. In 2006, Startup quickly moved through the minor league system and made it all the way to Triple A in Richmond. He did pitch in a Major League spring training, but never made it to the big leagues and finished his pro career in 2014, pitching in one game for Triple-A Toledo (Detroit Tigers organization).

But the trials Startup faced on the field paled in comparison to the adversity he and his wife, Lauren, went through off the field with their son, Copeland.

In part 1 of this two-part episode of the podcast, Will shares his roller coaster baseball journey, being selected by the Braves, why being traded devastated him, how he lived out his faith as a pro pitcher, and the day that his world changed forever while he was walking around a Houston mall in 2012.

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

Oct 12, 2018

Episode 168

Chris Guccione is an umpire for Major League Baseball. He made his MLB debut on April 25, 2000 and has been a full-time umpire in the Big Leagues since 2009. 

He has umpired many postseason series including the Division Series 6 times, the LCS twice and his first World Series in 2016 (Cubs/Indians). He was also a part of the crew that umpired the 2011 MLB All-Star game. 

On this episode of the podcast, we hear Chris' incredible journey to Christ, why he finally made the decision to walk with the Lord, what its like to be a part of the umpiring crew at the World Series, and the difference between umpiring a regular season game as opposed to the postseason. 

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

Oct 11, 2018

Beginning today, we will be featuring a Throwback Thursday segment from a previous podcast.

Today, we throw it back to Episode 2 of the podcast and feature the testimony of Pastor Matt Chandler of the Village Church. 

You can listen to the entire interview of the podcast here

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

Oct 10, 2018

Episode 167

Giyasi Zardes plays soccer in the MLS for the Columbus Crew and is also a member of the United States National team. 

He began his pro soccer career signing with the Los Angeles Galaxy as a homegrown player in 2012. He made his MLS debut on April 15, 2013. 

After a breakout 2014 season in which he scored 16 goals to go with a pair of assists, Zardes has experienced tough times in the production department thanks in part to injury (2016) and the worst Galaxy season ever (2017). In January 2018, the former MLS All-Star was traded to the Columbus Crew and did not disappoint scoring 16 goals through 30 games and is currently 4th in the league in scoring. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Gyasi about his resurgent 2018 season, transitioning to life in Columbus, Ohio, preparing for Team USA matches against Columbia and Peru, what faith looks like in the MLS and how sharing a hashtag on his Instagram page has helped him be more intentional about his faith in Christ. 

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

Oct 9, 2018

Episode 166

London Fletcher played 16 seasons in the NFL with the Rams, Bills and Redskins from 1998-2013. He is a 4-time Pro Bowler who was a member of the 1999 Rams team that won Super Bowl XXXIV.

He played his college football at Division III John Carroll where he was an All-American. He was undrafted in 1998 and signed with the Rams as a free agent. He would make the team out of training camp and never miss a game in his entire 16 year career. He’s one of only 5 players in the history of the NFL to play in over 250 consecutive games. (256)

London is currently working at CBS Sports as an NFL analyst and just recently was named a nominee for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2019.

In part 2 of our two-part podcast, we talk with London about making it to the NFL after playing Division III college football, playing in 256 consecutive games and if there was ever a time that he almost missed a game due to an injury. We also hear his testimony of coming to faith in Jesus Christ during his time in the NFL with the Bills.

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

Oct 8, 2018

Episode 165

London Fletcher played 16 seasons in the NFL with the Rams, Bills and Redskins from 1998-2013. He is a 4-time Pro Bowler who was a member of the 1999 Rams team that won Super Bowl XXXIV.

He played his college football at Division III John Carroll where he was an All-American. He was undrafted in 1998 and signed with the Rams as a free agent. He would make the team out of training camp and never miss a game in his entire 16 year career. He's one of only 5 players in the history of the NFL to play in over 250 consecutive games. (256)

London is currently working at CBS Sports as an NFL analyst and just recently was named a nominee for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2019.

In part 1 of a two-part podcast, we talk with London about being nominated for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, growing up in a very tough environment in Cleveland, Ohio, how he overcame family tragedy to pursue a football career. 

Oct 5, 2018

Episode 164

Demario Davis is a linebacker with the New Orleans Saints. He was selected in the third round of the 2012 by the New York Jets where he played 4 seasons before signing a deal with the Browns. In 2017, he was dealt back to the Jets where he had a career year with 135 combined tackles and 5 sacks in starting all 16 games.

In March of 2018, Davis became an unrestricted free agent and signed a 4-year deal to come to Louisiana and play with the Saints. In Week 4 of the season against the Giants, Demario's 11 tackles and 2 sacks helped the Saints to a 33-18 win over New York. For his efforts, he was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Demario about his transition to New Orleans, faith in the Saints locker room, social justice and why he's a part of the Players Coalition.

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

Oct 3, 2018

Episode 163

Ryan Carpenter is a hockey player with the Vegas Golden Knights in the NHL. He played his college hockey at Bowling Green University in Ohio where he won the BGSU Rookie of the Year in 2012.

In March of 2014, he was signed as an undrafted free agent by the San Jose Sharks and joined their minor league club in Worcester, MA.

He made his NHL debut in December 12, 2015 with San Jose and would remain on the roster in the postseason as the Sharks made the Stanley Cup Finals.

In 2016-17, he played in 11 games for the Sharks and signed a 2-year deal in June of 2017. A few months later, in December of 2017, he was placed on waivers by San Jose and picked up the next day by the Vegas Golden Knights where he would thrive and help lead the expansion club to an improbable Stanley Cup Finals run.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Ryan about his hockey journey, being a part of a Stanley Cup Finals run with Vegas, what trusting in God looked like to him during uncertain times, how he came to faith in Christ and his favorite NHL moment.

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

Oct 2, 2018

Episode 162

Samantha Ponder is the host of Sunday NFL Countdown on ESPN during the football season. She began her career at ESPN with their Longhorn Network in 2011. Prior to her current role on Sunday Countdown, she had been a staple as a reporter on ESPN's College Gameday and college football broadcasts.

In 2012, she married former NFL QB Christian Ponder is since then, has given birth to three children, two girls and a boy.

In part 2 of a two-part conversation, Sam shares the amazingly crazy story of how she met her husband Christian, whether she likes social media, what the Lord is teaching her and the Bible verse that has stayed with her through the years. 

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

Oct 1, 2018

Episode 161

Samantha Ponder is the host of Sunday NFL Countdown on ESPN during the football season. She began her career at ESPN with their Longhorn Network in 2011. Prior to her current role on Sunday Countdown, she had been a staple as a reporter on ESPN's College Gameday and college football broadcasts.

In 2012, she married former NFL QB Christian Ponder is since then, has given birth to three children, two girls and a boy.

On part 1 of a two-part conversation, we talk to Sam about balancing motherhood with her broadcasting career, making the transition from College Gameday to Sunday NFL Countdown, growing up with parents who are missionaries, and speaking out on issues as her platform has evolved over the years

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

Sep 28, 2018

Episode 160

Leslee and Matt Holliday have been married for 17 years. She is the mom to four children, 3 boys and a girl.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Leslee Holliday about being a baseball wife, how she reacted when her husband Matt decided he wanted to play baseball again, where her faith in Christ began, what a WAG is in baseball, and how she stays grounded in Christ when life gets chaotic and uncertain.

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

Sep 26, 2018

Episode 159

Alex Kirilloff was selected in the first round of 2016 MLB Amateur Draft by the Minnesota Twins out of high school. He is one of the top prospects in baseball and at the top of the list of players to watch for in the next few years as he continues his pro baseball journey.

In 2017, he missed the entire season due to recovery from Tommy John surgery but returned to the diamond in 2018 where he tore up Class A ball both in Cedar Rapids and then Fort Myers. His total stats for 2018 included a .348 average, with 20 home runs and 101 RBI. He also helped Fort Myers to the Florida State League championship after hitting .362 in just 65 games with the Miracle.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with the highly touted prospect about his dominant 2018 season, dealing with the hype of being a top prospect, playing in the 2018 MLB Futures Game, how Jesus Christ guides him each day, what marriage has been like for him after tying the knot at age 18 and the time he got "star struck" as a pro player.

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

Sep 25, 2018

Episode 158

Jimmy Spencer has been the head of athlete relations and content at the Uninterrupted since November 2015. He has covered the NBA for over a decade with such publications as the Sporting News, FOX Sports and Bleacher Report.

In part 2 of our interview with Jimmy, we hear his incredible story of faith in Christ, how he lives that faith out in the workplace, the state of Christian athletes and why he is starting a new podcast that will allow athletes to talk about the thing that matters most to them. 

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

Sep 24, 2018

Episode 157

Jimmy Spencer has been the head of athlete relations and content at the Uninterrupted since November 2015. He has covered the NBA for over a decade with such publications as the Sporting News, FOX Sports and Bleacher Report. 

In part 1 of our interview with Jimmy, we talk about having LeBron James as a boss, his favorite LeBron story, what its like working for the Uninterrupted and why giving athletes an opportunity to tell compelling stories is something he's passionate about and how they go about selecting athletes to tell their story. 

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

Sep 21, 2018

Episode 156

On December 14, 2011, Turner Gill was named head coach of Liberty University's football program. Since then, he has led the Flames to 6 wins or more in each of his 6 seasons. In 2018, Liberty began competing as an Independent at the NCAA Division 1 FBS level for the first time in its football history and will become bowl eligible the following year in 2019.

Prior to his time at Liberty, Gill was the head coach of the Kansas Jayhawks from 2010-2011, and the University of Buffalo from 2006-2009 where he was named MAC Coach of the Year in 2007. He also has assistant coaching jobs at Nebraska and in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers.

Gill was an accomplished quarterback under head coach Tom Osborne at the University of Nebraska in the 1980's where he helped lead the Cornhuskers to a 28-2 record as a starter and finishing 4th for the Heisman Trophy in 1983.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Coach Gill about coaching at Liberty in their first year as a Division 1 FBS program, his leadership style as a coach, spiritual disciplines he implements to himself and the team, what he learned from Tom Osborne at Nebraska and the mentors that have helped him on his football and faith journey.

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

Sep 19, 2018

Episode 155

Tyler Clutts' journey to the NFL was a crazy one. The former All-WAC defensive end at Fresno State went undrafted by the NFL in 2008. Instead, he signed with the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL. Then it was on to the Utah Blaze of the Arena League in 2010 as well as a stint in the UFL with the Sacramento Mountain Lions. 

In 2011, Clutts finally got the call to be a part of an NFL organization with the Cleveland Browns. But his NFL career was also a whirlwind. He would have stints with the Browns, Bears, Texans, Dolphins and then his final three seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. 

Tyler is also a married man to Tiffany and has 4 children, including twins. His life is anything but ordinary.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Tyler about his crazy football journey, how he trusted in the Lord to sustain him during the uncertainty of a pro football career, his struggle with identity as a football player, what it was like to score a touchdown at Lambeau Field as a member of the Cowboys, and where where he built his most lasting relationships in the NFL. 

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

Sep 18, 2018

Episode 154

In March of 2018, Trey Burton signed a 4-year deal with the Chicago Bears to be their starting tight end.

One month earlier, he helped facilitate the biggest play in Philadelphia Eagles history, the "Philly Special" where he threw a touchdown pass to quarterback Nick Foles in helping his team defeat the Patriots 41-33 and winning the first Super Bowl in Philadelphia history.

Today, on the field, Burton is focused on his new role as tight end with the Chicago Bears. On September 17, he scored his first touchdown as a Bear on Monday Night Football, helping Chicago to a 24-17 win over the Seahawks.

Burton, a contributor to Sports Spectrum's The Increase, announced on Monday September 17 that he would donate $1000 for every reception he makes and $2000 for every touchdown he scores to the International Justice Mission to help combat human trafficking and sex slavery.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Trey about transitioning from Philly to Chicago, what faith looks like in the locker room of the Bears as compared to the Eagles, battling anxiety, and why he's so passionate about bringing awareness to human trafficking.

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

Sep 17, 2018

Episode 153

Allan Houston played 13 seasons in the NBA with the Detroit Pistons and New York Knicks. He was selected in the first round of the 1993 NBA Draft by Detroit (11th overall) out of the University of Tennessee.

During his playing career, Allan was a member of 2 NBA All-Star teams as well playing on the 2000 USA Basketball Gold Medal winning team in Sidney, Australia. His number 20 is retired by Tennessee. 

Upon retirement, Allan is still involved in the NBA working with the Knicks in their front office as an Assistant General Manager as well as the GM of their NBA G-League team, the Westchester Knicks. 

A husband and father to seven children, Allan is heavily involved in his Allan Houston Legacy Foundation, FISLL, a legacy-building platform that teaches & ingrains the core fundamentals of life: FAITH, INTEGRITY, SACRIFICE, LEADERSHIP & LEGACY in daily living. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Allan about the changing landscape of the NBA, the dangers of social media, spiritual battles he faced during his playing career and why his faith fuels him to give back through his foundation.

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

Sep 14, 2018

Episode 152

Mohamed Massaquoi was the second round pick for the Cleveland Browns in the 2009 NFL draft where he recorded two 100-yard receiving games his rookie year, the first Browns rookie to have two or more such games in a season since 1999. 

Before joining the NFL, Mohamed earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology taking only 3.5 years from the University of Georgia where he was named the 2008 team captain, selected as a first-team All-Southeastern Conference and Academic All-SEC member, and received the team's Leon Farmer Award for his dedication to the strength and conditioning program and academics. 

Mohamed attended Independence High School helping his team win 77 consecutive games and capture four consecutive North Carolina state 4A championships while setting the North Carolina state prep records for career receiving yards, receiving yards (4,851) in a season (2004), touchdown catches in a career (76), and touchdown catches in a season (32 as a senior). 

In Spring 2017, while riding ATVs with friends Mohamed, was involved in a an accident that resulted in the amputation of four fingers, leaving his thumb intact.  Since retiring from the NFL, Mohamed has worked at Morgan Stanley as a financial advisor and is currently a speaker and advocate for fitness, athletes in business, and amputee causes.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Mohamed about his faith in Christ, how he handled losing in college after winning every game he played in high school, adjusting to life without football and how the accident he suffered with an ATV changed his perspective on life and made him grateful to God. 

For more on Mohamed, check out his website at MohamedMassaquoi.com.

Check out http://SportsSpectrum.com for more content on the intersection of sports and faith. 

Sep 12, 2018

Episode 151

Jonathan Isaac was selected 6th overall in the 2017 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic. He played one season of college basketball at Florida State where he was a member of the All-ACC Freshman Team. 

During his rookie year in the NBA, injuries limited him to just 27 games where averaged 5.4 points per game. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Jonathan about preparing for his second NBA season, what he learned in his rookie year, growing up with 5 siblings, how basketball and a Bible verse in the book of Luke led him to rededicating his life to Christ, why finding a church was important to him, and the crazy story of how he came to preach last year. 

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

Sep 10, 2018

Episode 150

Miles McPherson was selected in the 10th round of the 1982 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. After being released, he was picked up by the San Diego Chargers, where he would play 4 seasons as a defensive back.

During his time as a player, Miles became a follower of Jesus Christ, a decision that would eventually lead him to becoming a pastor.

For the past 18 years, he has been the Sr. Pastor and founder of the "Rock Church" in San Diego, CA. 

Miles is author of the new book "The Third Option: Hope For a Racially Divided Nation."

On this episode of the podcast, Miles shares his journey from football player to pastor and coming to Christ during his playing career after being stuck in a world of drugs and addiction. We also talk to Miles about his new book, the segregation of the church, athletes using their voice to protest and why HONOR is something that can help so many of us find common ground as we look to be united and not divided.

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

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