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Episodes2020-02-28T04:22:15-05:00

CSR 96 Humpy Wheeler

Humpy Wheeler Episode 96 30 NOV 2020 The former president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway, having served in that role for 35 years. He has long been known as one of the foremost promoters of NASCAR auto racing

CSR 95 Colleen Day

Colleen Day Episode 95 23 NOV 2020 The Associate Head Coach for the women’s basketball team at the University of Akron. She previously was an assistant coach at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, after having spent ten seasons as

CSR 94 Evvere Anthony

Evvere Anthony Episode 94 16 NOV 2020 Originally from Antigua, and now living in Arizona, as a young child her dream was to be a Catholic nun.  She is a Benedictine Oblate and has also made her Cursillo weekend.  She

CSR 93 Sam Harris

Sam Harris Episode 93 9 NOV 2020 Currently an offensive lineman at Minnesota State University Moorhead.  Prior to that he was a two-time all-state and two-time all-conference selection with St. Mary’s Central High School in Bismarck, North Dakota, a private,

CSR 92 Steve Steele

Steve Steele Episode 92 2 NOV 2020 He grew up playing hockey and football, including competing in the latter sport for four years at William Penn University in Iowa, where he helped his team win a conference championship and broke

CSR 91 Andy Sonnier

Andy Sonnier Episode 91 26 OCT 2020 He recently directed a Catholic men’s conference in Texas and is currently studying for candidacy for a Permanent Diaconate program in his Diocese.  On the sports side, he spent many years in athletic

CSR 90 Jason Jones

Jason Jones Episode 90 19 OCT 2020 He fought (Kyokushinkai) (Japanese karate) in the Tokyo Dome in Japan in 1995, representing USA, and continues to compete to this day. He had also played football in high school.  He is a
CSR 96 Humpy Wheeler2020-11-29T21:53:04-05:00

Humpy Wheeler

Episode 96

30 NOV 2020

The former president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway, having served in that role for 35 years. He has long been known as one of the foremost promoters of NASCAR auto racing and was inducted into 14 halls of fame. Back in his days as a student athlete he played college football at the University of South Carolina. His athletic career also included time as an outstanding boxer, posting a 40-2 won-lost record. He co-authored a book called, “Growing Up NASCAR: Racing’s Most Outrageous Promoter Tells All.”

Guest quotes:

“Today, there’s a tremendous Catholic population in the south, particularly in the big cities because of the migration from the north.”

“We went to Mass in the bay of a filling station!  And it was common to go in theaters on Sundays.  The blue laws, you couldn’t show movies on Sunday in a lot of places in the south, so, they loaned the priest the movie theater for the day and so we would go there.”

“I would line fields and cut grass and he even taught me how to tape ankles and all that kind of stuff.  So, I was around the monks.  There’s a Benedictine monastery there.  I was around them all the time.  And it made me feel extremely comfortable, even to this day, with priests.  And I have a lot of dear friends that are priests who I talk with regularly.”

“I’ve been very fortunate to have spent over 50 years in the auto racing business and doing the thing that I really love to do the most, and also the ability maybe to serve a – what I call it – an underground ministry.  You don’t wear a collar.  You just be a good Catholic and you try to minister to those around you in a subtle way.”

“There’s a great deal of Christianity and Catholicism in helping other people handle grief.”

“All kinds of moral things come up race week.  Something happens to somebody… and having Fr. Grubba there was wonderful, ’cause I could ask him anything.”

“One of my ministries, my own personal ministries, I don’t raise money for it or anything else, but… One of my ministries is to try to help young black kids who have grown up without a father.”

“The Benedictine monks set a great example for me, having been around them as a kid all the time; work, pray, and pray.”

“I have a wonderful relationship with the Blessed Virgin.  She has helped me so many times when I’ve been at the bottom of the barrel.”

“We have kept the faith as strong as you can as the real anchor to our marriage.”

Related link:

Book – Growing Up NASCAR: Racing’s Most Outrageous Promoter Tells All

CSR 95 Colleen Day2020-11-22T17:03:21-05:00

Colleen Day

Episode 95

23 NOV 2020

The Associate Head Coach for the women’s basketball team at the University of Akron. She previously was an assistant coach at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, after having spent ten seasons as an assistant coach at Miami (Ohio) University, where she had competed as a student-athlete, being a four-time letter winner there and three-time team captain.  She has since been inducted into the Miami University Hall of Fame for her success on the court.

Guest quotes:

“I grew up in northeast Ohio… going to St. Columbkille for… first through eighth grade.  I have five siblings, a traditional Irish Catholic family.”

“We had a really active campus ministry (in high school)… They really allowed us to run a lot of things, whether it was just prayer group, Bible study.  They always held Masses on Sunday where the student body could just attend, which was really neat ’cause our chaplain was able to really direct his homily and conversation around things that really mattered to us.”

(at college) “We had… right in town… a church… and I was able to get involved with that right away, lectored and also was a Eucharistic Minister there… It was great for me because I knew Sundays we usually had basketball off so I could still get there… I felt like it really kept me grounded… to be able to make sure I was going to Mass and kinda able to reset myself for the week.”

(she and her husband) “we’re both so centered in Jesus through our ministry through coaching… I definitely think both of us see it as a ministry… but we try to keep our players and our service to them at the forefront of it.  So, we’re able to remind each other a lot what’s important and not get caught up in the things that we shouldn’t.”

“There are a lot of athletes who have strong faiths, so that alone sometimes can just be a connection with them.”

“We can get so caught up in winning as college coaches.  And yes, we do get paid to win, but we also get paid to serve our student-athletes.  And, again, between myself and my husband, we try to keep that at the forefront of what we do and not get caught up in the egos that a lot of times can overtake this profession.”

“Yes, I love getting a defensive stop or drawing up the play to win a game or something like that, that’s all fun, but, the day-to-day, I love the relationships with the players and I love some of the things that we’re able to do with the community.”

Related link:

Colleen’s U. of Akron bio

(This episode contains a prayer from the National Catholic Coaches Association’s “The Leadership Papers,” although originally credited in there to The Coach’s Bible.)
CSR 94 Evvere Anthony2020-11-15T21:12:13-05:00

Evvere Anthony

Episode 94

16 NOV 2020

Originally from Antigua, and now living in Arizona, as a young child her dream was to be a Catholic nun.  She is a Benedictine Oblate and has also made her Cursillo weekend.  She also served in the U.S. military for 12 years.  The list of sports she has competed in is quite lengthy, and she even won a Presidential Award for Athletics.  Nowadays she is a coach with the North Phoenix Christian Soccer Club and also hopes to one day compete in wheelchair basketball as part of the Paralympics.

Guest quotes:

“My home was right next to the Catholic school… so my mother enrolled me over there.  And, as I entered the rooms where the nuns were, I saw a picture of Jesus on the cross, which I had never seen before… and I just wanted to know more about Jesus after that.”

“I was lucky enough to grasp the Bible so that I could teach Sunday school to the little ones.”

“I went to Rome… and I prayed with the Pope, John Paul II, and even though I was kind of going to church I wasn’t in the church like I was before, and he said ‘Catholics come home’ … so I decided I needed to get back involved more fully than just going.”

“I went to the Mass and that’s when I met Monsignor O’Grady … he invited me to come back the next Sunday, and I never stopped going… I was able to become Minister of the Word there… I became an Assistant Sacristan.  I was also a Eucharistic Minister.”

“They needed a Catholic chaplain assistant to join up with the different groups that were there… Your premise is, for the Catholic faith, you’re going to fill in as a Minister of the Word because there’s not a priest there every Sunday, so we still tried to have something.  So, every Sunday in Iraq we would have Minister of the Word.”

“I was lucky enough where I started talking to the aviators that we need to schedule the priest to come every week and not every month.”

“The Ugandan guards were so amazed because they knew me as the lady that does the ministry, who’s a soldier who does Ministry of the Word in the Catholic church, and from that point on they were like, ‘You’re a nun with a gun’!”

“I get to work with young men and women, mostly the female team that I have… and we’re able to assist them with the Christian faith.”

“The Lord is foremost in what we’re doing in terms of training because we don’t want them to have an attitude of, ‘I’m winning, I’m playing to win and I don’t care about anything else.’  Teaching them that if you put the Lord first, everything else will fall into place.”

“People think you have to win all the time, it’s all about winning.  There’s lessons to be learned in losing.”

“Your faith is… a team sport in the sense that we’re all trying to get to heaven but we’re all going in a different direction, but we’re working together.  That’s the church, the bride of Christ.  So if we’re working together we should be respecting each other whether we’re on the field or whether we’re in our normal lives.”

CSR 93 Sam Harris2020-11-08T17:05:56-05:00

Sam Harris

Episode 93

9 NOV 2020

Currently an offensive lineman at Minnesota State University Moorhead.  Prior to that he was a two-time all-state and two-time all-conference selection with St. Mary’s Central High School in Bismarck, North Dakota, a private, Roman Catholic co-ed school where he also competed in boys’ varsity wrestling.

Guest quotes:

“I decided that football my whole life was my identity, and this last year I realized that my identity isn’t in football.”

“I was a cradle Catholic and I was blessed to go to twelve years of Catholic education.  So, it’s kind of just always been a part of my life.”

“I think the most radical thing you can do as a college student, the most counter-cultural thing you can do as a college student, is live out your faith.  And so, there’s always hope that, if you want to be a rebel, you gotta live your faith in college.”

“I was worried that I wouldn’t be surrounded by like-minded people.  I wouldn’t be surrounded by solid Catholics.  But I kind of looked at that as an opportunity to grow, as an opportunity to cement my faith.”

“My senior year of high school, freshman year of college, I wasn’t sure – I was either going to go with the way of the world or I was going to use what I learned and I was going to become even stronger in my faith, and luckily the latter happened.”

“The perspective of the human from the Catholic perspective is we’re a whole person, so we should be striving for excellence in all areas of our life.  And so that’s something I’ve tried to carry over from my faith to football and also to academics.”

“I realized that if I want to really live a life that isn’t just being known as a Catholic but has an identity as a Catholic, I had to grow close to the Eucharist.”

“It was no longer an intellectual understanding of the Eucharist.  It was no longer, ‘I know that that’s the body of Christ,’ it was, ‘I believe that that’s the body of Christ.  I can feel in my heart that that’s Jesus Christ on the altar.”

“It switched from desiring to be the guy that’s known as a Catholic, to desiring to be the guy whose identity is Catholicism.”

“When you grow close to the Eucharist and when you try to build a devotion to the Eucharist, God does not disappoint.  He continues to give you gifts in that effort.”

“I continued to pray, ‘Help me be comfortable feeling uncomfortable’.”

Related link:

Sam’s player bio page, MSUM football

(This episode contains a prayer by Gregg Easterbrook from the NFL.com and ESPN.com column “Monday Morning Quarterback,” as seen in Play Like A Champion Today’s prayerbook for sports, God, Be In My Sport)
CSR 92 Steve Steele2020-11-01T16:34:22-05:00

Steve Steele

Episode 92

2 NOV 2020

He grew up playing hockey and football, including competing in the latter sport for four years at William Penn University in Iowa, where he helped his team win a conference championship and broke the NAIA national rushing record.  He went on to coach the offensive line at Dakota State University before going on to his current position as head football coach of Pierre TF Riggs High School.  PLUS he is Head Coach of the Oahe Capitals High School Hockey team.

Guest quotes:

“I was a cradle Catholic, really brought up well in the faith.  I’m very blessed to have the parents that I do have, and not just their teachings but their example.”

“I think that was really one of the first moments that I can clearly remember that we were – or at least personally – I was stepping aside and saying, ‘Okay, this is what I’m feeling God wants me to do, so I’m going to do it even though in all reality I don’t know that I’m overly comfortable with it yet, but I’ve gotta trust Him and do what I think He’s wanting me to do’.”

“Our Catholic high school, we put a very large premium on doing community service and being involved in the community and in your own parishes.”

“Obviously I took so much from my parents, but, learning a lot more and going even further in-depth at the school really just kept me wanting more and then being able to teach Religious Ed to the elementary school kids helped me be able to pass that on and then hopefully build that excitement in that generation as well.”

“We were able to get it going and start doing some service projects and meeting every week. It was a lot of fun, again, just to continue to hopefully build that excitement, build the passion for not just sports, not just school, but ultimately for the Lord.”

“Life’s about what you can do for others and how you can express love to others.”

“We all have families and that’s gotta be our primary job and we’re all big boys, we can find a way to still be prepared for football on Monday even if we don’t come in (to work) all weekend.”

“You’ve gotta look back to Jesus to realize that people weren’t all that happy with his decisions that he made too and he obviously, he’s the one that we need to be following in terms of making decisions and if we were to just go for the popular decision then chances are we’re not doing what he wants us to do.”

“I do think that the most important way that we can minister is by setting a great example.”

“I’ve tried to really focus on waking up at five or a little before and doing both – meaning, running or working out in some fashion and then saying a rosary and Divine Mercy Chaplet every morning.”

“Be courageous.  It’s a tough thing and it’s a really hard world, I think, that we’re living in right now, but I don’t think it’s harder than the world Jesus was in.”

Related links:

Coach Steele’s “Offense In A Box”

Pierre TF Riggs Football

Oahe Capitals Hockey

(This episode contains a prayer from the National Catholic Coaches Association’s “The Leadership Papers,” although originally credited in there to The Coach’s Bible.)
CSR 91 Andy Sonnier2020-10-25T19:33:43-04:00

Andy Sonnier

Episode 91

26 OCT 2020

He recently directed a Catholic men’s conference in Texas and is currently studying for candidacy for a Permanent Diaconate program in his Diocese.  On the sports side, he spent many years in athletic training, both with college teams as well as the then NFL Houston Oilers.

Guest quotes:

“I met my wife in 2014.  She was from here in Orange (Texas), and just through God’s Will and different things that happened in our lives, we ended up here in Orange.  After we got married, we lived in Louisiana for a few years, but then we eventually moved here last year.”

“The earliest memories I have was weekday Mass with my dad before the crack of dawn… When we’d walk out of Mass sometimes it was still dark.”

“As a kid I was very in tune with my faith.  Ya’ know, we grew up in church.  I went to Catholic school for a couple years, middle school, and it was there where I had an experience… I went to a seminary retreat and I really felt Jesus speak to me on a personal level.  And I really felt the calling to the priesthood at the time.”

“God’s got a plan for all of us, and I think He’s got other things still in store for me in the future.”

“I didn’t really have the opportunity to play a lot of sports as a kid because helping out on the farm was more important.  But I did have my share of time to play a little bit of pee wee football, Little League baseball, things like that.”

“I owe God all credit in the world for getting me through that year because without Him I don’t know where I’d be today.”

“God’s opened a lot of doors for me.  And I give credit to Him for everything that’s happened in my life.  God’s Will is a funny ride.  It can really be quite a journey.”

“We have to really spend time with God and let Him show us our paths in life.”

“None of my bad decisions in life was ever preceded by prayer.”

Related link:

Annual men’s conference

CSR 90 Jason Jones2020-10-25T19:33:06-04:00

Jason Jones

Episode 90

19 OCT 2020

He fought (Kyokushinkai) (Japanese karate) in the Tokyo Dome in Japan in 1995, representing USA, and continues to compete to this day. He had also played football in high school.  He is a movie producer and — among numerous other projects he has done — was the Executive Producer of a TV documentary called, “Mother Marianne: Portrait of a Saint.”  He is also the founder of Movie To Movement, which promotes the incomparable dignity and beauty of the human person through the power of film.  They just released a documentary that longtime NFL tight end Benjamin Watson is the executive producer of.

Guest quotes:

“As a boy I think I was lonely a lot, and I longed for companionship.  I also longed for a mentor.  And, that’s something you get from sports, right?  You get companions.  You get cohorts.  You also get coaches who are mentors.”

“There’s a sacramental nature of sports… It’s a secular sacrament in that when you’re competing, it’s a sign in a little moment of your life how you’re going to live the rest of your life.”

“For me, what sports taught me was honesty and sincerity.  You can’t fake it.”

“Here I was a black belt, a guy that fought in the world tournament… and an MMA fighter came from England and … said… that I was kind of a letdown.  But I’m so glad that happened… My buddy said, ‘This is part of your vocation’.”

“I love this little small type of media, ’cause we’re a tribe.  We’re guys who are Catholic guys, right?  This is like the locker room at your local Catholic high school, but now we’re old dudes but we love our sports.”

“All of us who are Catholics, when we go to whatever it is our sport is, we’re bringing Jesus Christ into our tribe.”

“I think the tribal aspect of sports is a great opportunity to share the gospel too.”

“When I read the New Testament, what really startled me was just this idea of God becoming man.”

“Saint Maximilian Kolbe was someone I discovered… that to me seemed to be the model of the type of person I wanted to be.  I wanted to be somebody that would risk all and give all for the vulnerable.”

“The Catholic moment isn’t when there are huge conferences and bishops are there selling box sets of DVD box sets.  The Catholic moment is when people are scattered, people are alone.”

Related link:

Movie To Movement website

(This episode contains a prayer by Fort Worth Christian Football League parent Linda Fleshman, as seen in Play Like A Champion Today’s prayerbook for sports, God, Be In My Sport)