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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: Category: Christian
Oct 3, 2022

Scott Twardoski is entering his 14th year as an NBA official. He has worked over 600 NBA regular season and playoff games. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to Scott about living his faith out as an NBA referee, the 2020 NBA bubble, praying during games, and watching his kids grow in their faith. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here. 

Oct 2, 2022

Today Sports Spectrum begins a seven week series called "I ONCE WAS" where athletes share their transformation story of going from lost to found.

This podcast takes you deeper into each athlete's "I ONCE WAS" story and today we begin our series with Super Bowl LII MVP and current NFL QB Nick Foles. 

You can watch Nick's "I ONCE WAS" video here.

You can order "I ONCE WAS" merchandise here

Sep 30, 2022

Tyler Clutts is a former NFL fullback who played eight seasons of professional football. After going undrafted out of Fresno State, Clutts went undrafted in 2008 and signed with the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL. Then it was on to the Utah Blaze of the Arena League in 2010, followed by a stint in the UFL with the Sacramento Mountain Lions.

In 2011, Clutts got the call from the NFL and signed with the Cleveland Browns. His NFL journey saw him make stops with Chicago, Houston, Miami and the Dallas Cowboys.

Today on the podcast, we sit down with Tyler Clutts to discuss individualism in today's sports world and what it means to tame the tongue as a follower of Christ.


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here. 

Sep 29, 2022

Beginning October 3, Sports Spectrum will introduce a brand new 7-week video series called "I ONCE WAS" featuring athletes sharing their stories of transformation. 

Jade McCarthy introduces you to our new series and is joined by Jason Romano to discuss the heart behind "I ONCE WAS."

You can learn more and watch all of the "I ONCE WAS" videos here at SportsSpectrum.com/IOW.

Sep 28, 2022

Jaccob Slavin is an All-Star defenseman with the Carolina Hurricanes. He was originally selected by Carolina in the fourth round of the 2012 NHL Draft. After a collegiate career at Colorado College, Slavin began his pro journey and made his NHL debut on November 20, 2015.

In 2017, Slavin signed a seven-year contract extension with the Hurricanes and in 2020, was named to his first All-Star team. One year later, he won the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy presented each year to the National Hockey League "player to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability. 

Today on the podcast, we welcome back Jaccob Slavin to talk about his story of fatherhood, adoption, his role as a leader with Carolina, his desire to glorify God and what discipleship looks like for him. 


Listen here to our interview with Jaccob Slavin from May 2017. 

Sep 26, 2022

Jeff Kemp is a former NFL quarterback who played 10 years of pro football from 1981-1991 with the Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks and Philadelphia Eagles. He had his best season in 1984, where he led the Rams to a 10-6 record and a playoff berth. 

Growing up in the 1960's, Jeff Kemp watched his father Jack Kemp win multiple AFL championships as a quarterback with the Buffalo Bills. Jack Kemp was also a well known politician who went on to run for president. Jeff, post-playing career, is now a motivational speaker and author, and an ambassador for the Fatherhood CoMission. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to Jeff about his NFL playing career, playing with Hall of Famers Joe Montana, Eric Dickerson, Jerry Rice, Steve Largent and Reggie White, the parallels of football and faith and why Jeff knew his post-playing career calling was to go into ministry.  


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here.

Sep 23, 2022

Hunter Henry is a tight end with the New England Patriots. He was originally selected in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Chargers and played his first five seasons with SD/LA. In the Spring of 2021, he signed a three-year contract with New England and in his first year with the Patriots, caught a career-high nine touchdown passes.

In college, Henry was a standout tight end with the University of Arkansas, winning the John Mackey Award in 2015 for the nation's best tight end.

Today on the podcast, we talk to Hunter Henry about becoming a father, discovering his "new why," what it means to play for an audience of one, and the importance of finding his identity outside of football.


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here. 

Sep 21, 2022

Dustin Nickerson is a comedian and calls himself the "the world’s most average person.” He has performs over 300 shows a year and his videos have been viewed over 20 million times.

He has appeared on Comedy Central, Hulu, Fox, and Netflix alongside Kevin Hart. His stand-up comedy special, Overwhelmed, which was produced by KevOnStage, was one of the highest-rated comedy specials on Amazon Prime and has been viewed over 125,000 times on YouTube. He and his wife Melissa host the popular Don’t Make Me Come Back There podcast and in June 2022, Dustin released his new book How to be Married (to Melissa).

On today's podcast, we talk to Dustin about his career as a comedian, his love for Seattle sports, performing in minor league stadiums and why he performs clean as a standup comedian. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here.

Sep 19, 2022

Skip Schumaker is currently a coach with the St. Louis Cardinals. He was originally selected in fifth round of the 2001 MLB Draft by the Cardinals and four years later, made his big league debut with St. Louis against the Red Sox. He would go on to play 7 years with St. Louis from 2005-2012 and was a member of the 2011 World Series championship team. 

After a season with the Dodgers and two more with the Reds, Schumaker's playing career ended in 2016 and he would turn to coaching a year later, being named as the first base coach of the San Diego Padres in December of 2017. He spent four seasons with the Padres before being hired back to St. Louis as their bench coach in November 2021. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to Skip about returning to St. Louis as a coach in 2022, coaching his legendary former teammates (Pujols, Wainwright, Molina), growing in his faith, the impact Adam Wainwright had on his Christian walk, and blooming where he is planted.


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here.

Sep 16, 2022

James Mitchell is the Team Chaplain and Coordinator of Organization Life Enrichment with the Tennessee Titans. He is entering his fifth season with Tennessee in 2022. Prior to joining the Titans, Mitchell worked at Duke University as the Director of Football Development for the Blue Devil Gridiron Program for nine years from 2009-18.

From 2003-09, he served six years s the team chaplain at the University of Tennessee, working with the football, and men's and women's basketball programs. He has also served as  a national director of outreach for Pro Athletes Outreach, where he worked in conjunction with both the NFL and MLB.

Today on the podcast, we talk to James Mitchell about his role with the Titans and his desire to see his players and coaches grow as men, as husbands and in their faith. We also talk to James about discipleship and helping others grow in the word of God. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here.

Sep 14, 2022

James Donaldson is a former professional basketball player who played 16 seasons in the NBA with Seattle, San Diego/LA Clippers, Dallas, N.Y. Knicks and Utah. He was originally selected in the fourth round of the 1979 NBA Draft by Seattle and after playing one year of pro ball in Italy, he made his NBA debut on October 10, 1980 with Seattle. 

Most known for his time with the Dallas Mavericks, Donaldson played six seasons with Dallas and led the NBA in field goal percentage in 1984-85 and played in the 1988 NBA All-Star Game in Chicago. Donaldson holds the record of the most games ever played in the NBA without an attempted three-point shot. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to James Donaldson about his basketball career, why his game wouldn't translate to today's NBA, playing in the 1988 All-Star Game, guarding Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, Shaquille O'Neal, Moses Malone, Hakeem Olajuwon and other legendary centers. Then the conversation turns to James post-playing career and his struggle with mental health and depression and how God has helped him overcome it. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here.

Sep 12, 2022

Jonathan Tjarks passed away from cancer at the age of 34 on September 10, 2022. He leaves behind his wife Melissa and son Jackson. Tjarks was a staff writer with The Ringer, where he covered the NBA and other sports.

Today, we bring back the powerful words of Jonathan Tjarks from his conversation with us on Sports Spectrum in October 2021 to talk about how his faith in Christ helped him during his battle with cancer. 


Donations to his family can be made through their GoFundMe account here

You can read Jonathan's piece "The Long Night of the Soul" here

You can read Jonathan's piece "Does My Son Know You?" here

Sep 12, 2022

Tim Craft is the men's head basketball coach for Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, North Carolina. Prior to taking the head coaching position in 2013, Craft spent time as an assistant coach at East Carolina, Auburn and Gardner Webb. 

In his nine seasons with Gardner-Webb, he has 156 victories and in 2018-19, led his team to a 23-12 record and a berth into the NCAA tournament. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to Tim Craft about his journey of coaching, why he chose Gardner Webb, coaching at a Christian school and his heart and desire for adoption and foster-care. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here.

Sep 11, 2022
Today on the podcast, our Sports Spectrum Managing Editor Jon Ackerman joins host Jason Romano to preview the 2022 Fall edition of the Sports Spectrum Magazine with New Orleans Saints All-Pro linebacker Demario Davis on the cover. 

SIGN UP HERE for Sports Spectrum Magazine. Use the code SS15OFF to save 15% on a one-year subscription.

Sep 9, 2022

Randall Cunningham played 16 seasons in the NFL as quarterback with the Philadelphia Eagles, Minnesota Vikings, Dallas Cowboys and Baltimore Ravens. During his career, he was a four-time Pro Bowler and a three-time Bert Bell award winner for the NFL's player of the year. 

The UNLV grad was selected in the second round of the 1985 NFL Draft by the Eagles and played 11 seasons in Philadelphia and in 2009, was inducted into the Philadelphia Eagles Hall of Fame. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to Randall Cunningham about being called to be a pastor, how the progression of his faith intersected with the progression of his football career, and the joy he finds watching his children participate in sports. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here. 

Sep 2, 2022

Joe Kim is the Director of Skill Development with the New England Patriots. He is a member of the 2018 Patriots championship team that beat the Rams 13-3 to win Super Bowl LIII. 

Prior to his time in New England, Kim has been a part of multiple teams as a skill coach including Chicago, Washington, Kansas City, Buffalo, Denver, Green Bay, Miami and Dallas. He got his start as an assistant coach in the NFL with Bill Belichick and the Cleveland Browns in 1992.

Today on the podcast, Joe Kim shares about his football journey, lessons learned from Bill Belichick, the attitude of gratitude and why he made a decision in his 40's to follow Jesus Christ. 


Receive our 10-day Sports Spectrum Devotional written by professional athletes for FREE when you sign up for our Sports Spectrum Weekly Email Newsletter. Sign up here. 

Apr 23, 2021

Vinny Rey played his entire nine year NFL career with the Cincinnati Bengals. He came into the league as an undrafted free agent after playing his college football at Duke University. 

After being waived on September 4, 2010, Vinny would sign to the practice squad with Cincinnati the next day and was promoted to the active roster in week 15. He would spend the next 8 years on the active roster until his retirement following the 2018 season. 

Rey was twice nominated for the NFL's prestigious Walter Payton Man of the Year award and was a four-year team captain and the Bengals' leading tackler in 2014, 2015 and 2017. 

Today on the podcast, we talk to Vinny Rey about his unlikely journey to the NFL, growing up in New York City, his welcome to pro football moment, how his faith guides him each day and what the transition from current to former player has been like for him. 


If you enjoyed this podcast with Vinny, we know you'll love these conversations as well:

- Andy Dalton - NFL Quarterback

- LaMorris Crawford - Cincinnati Bengals Team Chaplain

For more stories of sports and faith, check out our website SportsSpectrum.com 

Apr 23, 2020

BONUS EPISODE

 

Daniel Jones and Nate Solder are our guests today on the show. Daniel is the starting quarterback of the New York Giants and Nate is his left tackle, protecting his quarterback. They both joined Jason Romano and FOX Sports Football Analyst Brock Huard on a Sports Spectrum LIVE event that took place Wednesday night April 22. Daniel and Nate both share their NFL Draft stories, as well as why giving back is so important as athletes with large platforms.

 

You can watch the entire #TeamUp broadcast on our YouTube channel here and you can be a part of Compassion International and helping to donate and release children from poverty. Check out the website http://Compassion.com/TeamUp.

 

Jan 29, 2020

Episode 448

Rebecca Bender is a survivor. Growing up in a small town in Oregon, Bender had dreams of living a purposeful life.  Rebecca thought she found her fairytale when she moved to Las Vegas with her boyfriend. But her dream became her nightmare when her boyfriend became her pimp at the age of 19. Trapped in a life of chaos, coerced into prostitution, abused and controlled by her trafficker, Rebecca was forced into sex trafficking for nearly six years. Many attempted escapes, two brandings, and several pimps later, Federal Investigators raided the home, allowing her an eventual avenue for escape.

Today she is the CEO & Founder of RBI (Rebecca Bender Initiative)  and Author of the new book, In Pursuit of Love, releasing on January 28, 2020. Rebecca is passionate about telling her story but even more, helping others tell their own.

Rebecca has consulted on some of the largest legal cases and was the only non-law-endorsement person to receive a special operations, all-access pass to assist police in Minneapolis during Super Bowl 2018. She also assisted Dateline in an undercover operation in Houston during the Super Bowl in 2017.

On this episode of the podcast, we hear Rebecca share her powerful story of human trafficking, finding faith in Christ to help her move forward, how God showed her to forgive those that hurt her, and her passion and desire to help others. 

If you or someone you know may be caught up in human trafficking, you can call the human trafficking hotline toll-free at 1-888-373-7888.

Jan 21, 2020

Episode 442

Matt Wieters has played 11 seasons as a Major League Baseball catcher. He was selected in the first round (5th overall) in the 2007 MLB Amateur Draft by the Baltimore Orioles. Two years later, he would make his MLB debut in 2009 for Baltimore against the Detroit Tigers and a day later, would have his first career MLB hit, a triple, off of pitcher Justin Verlander.

During his nine seasons in Baltimore, Wieters would be named to four All-Star teams and win the Gold Glove award in 2011 and again in 2012. 

In 2017 and 2018, Wieters was a catcher for the Washington Nationals and in 2019, he played with the St. Louis Cardinals. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Matt about his 2019 season with the Cardinals, playing and learning from legendary catcher Yadier Molina, how he's trusting in God's plan for the 2020 baseball season, being a light in the clubhouse and why it is important to live in the increase of Christ. 

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

Jan 20, 2020

Episode 441

Mike "Doc" Emrick is a legend in the broadcasting circles. He's currently the play by play voice for NBC's NHL coverage. He began his broadcasting journey in college at Bowling Green in 1971 and is now in his 47th year of broadcasting professional hockey. 

A multiple Emmy Award winner, Mike is known as "America's voice of hockey." In December 2011, Emrick became the first member of the media to be inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame and in December 2019, was inducted into the Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame. 

An avid Pittsburgh Pirates fan, Mike was able to call his one and only regular season MLB game in 2016 with Bob Costas on MLB Network. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Mike Emrick about his hockey broadcasting journey, being inducted into the Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame, the importance of prayer, how he prepares for each game he broadcasts, and how he brings his faith into his job as a broadcaster. 

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

Jan 17, 2020

Episode 440

Jaelene Hinkle plays professional soccer for the North Carolina Courage in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL). She was selected seventh overall in the 2015 NWSL Draft by the Western New York Flash.

Playing the defender position, Hinkle starred in high school at Valor Christian in Highlands Ranch, Colo., where she was a Parade High School All-American and named first-team all-state.

She has played the last five seasons in the NWSL, the first two with Western New York and the last three with North Carolina, which has won three consecutive NWSL Shields (best regular-season record) and the past two NWSL championships.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Hinkle about her journey to pro soccer, winning the NWSL title again in 2019, where her journey with Christ began, and facing scrutiny for standing up for her faith.

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

Jan 15, 2020

Episode 439

Rodney Pryor plays professional basketball in the NBA's G League with the Salt Lake City Stars. He played his college basketball at Robert Morris, where he helped his squad to an NCAA tournament berth in 2015. In 2016-17, he transferred to Georgetown, where he led the team in scoring (18.0 ppg) and started all 32 games for the Hoyas. 

In 2017, after not getting selected in the NBA Draft, he decided to continue his pro basketball career and is currently in his third season in the NBA's G League. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Rodney about his basketball journey and his desire to achieve his dream of playing in the NBA. Rodney's passionate about his faith in Christ and shares with us his testimony and why he believes the platform that he has been given is to glorify the Lord. 

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

Jan 14, 2020

Episode 438

Brad Mann is the founder of Livin’ The Dream, an organization that aims to positively influence people through the game of basketball. Comprising of youth teams, camps, clinics and leagues, LTD uses the game “to develop goodwill in order to lead people to God and to help them discover their God-given dreams.”

Mann played at various levels of basketball. He was a McDonald’s All-American nominee at Riverton High, as he set school records in points, rebounds, and blocks, and still remains the Kansas high school all-time leader in career rebounds.

He went on to play Division I basketball at the University of Missouri-Kansas City for three years, transferring after his junior season to Missouri Southern State University. He helped lead that team to the NCAA Division II Final Four and the best record in D-II.

After college, Mann toured internationally with Athletes In Action to play against top-level professionals, and he later signed a contract to play professionally for the Fargo Beez and the Salina Rattlers of the International Basketball Association (IBA).

Now, Mann is a USA Certified Youth Basketball Coach. He is also an ordained minister that holds a degree in communications and oversees the day-to-day operations of Livin’ The Dream.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Mann about starting Livin’ The Dream, intersecting his love for basketball with his love for God, overcoming cancer twice, and how sports ministry has changed over the years.

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

Jan 13, 2020

Episode 437

Jonathan Stewart played 11 seasons in the NFL with the Carolina Panthers and New York Giants. He was selected in the first round (13th overall) by the Panthers in the 2008 NFL Draft. 

In college, Stewart was a two-time First-Team All-American running back in 2006 and 2007 with the University of Oregon and won the 2007 Sun Bowl MVP after rushing for a career-high 253 yards in the game. 

After coming to the NFL, Stewart would become the Panthers all-time leading rusher after rushing for over 7,300 yards and 58 touchdowns in 10 seasons and made the Pro Bowl in January 2016. 

After one injury riddled season in New York with the Giants, Stewart announced his retirement in April 2019 after 11 seasons. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Jonathan Stewart about his transition to retirement, living his faith out as an NFL player, the experience of playing in the Super Bowl, and why he calls himself a "convicted competitor." 

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

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