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

CSR 109 Gabby Otto

Gabby Otto Episode 109 1 MAR 2021 She played college basketball at Rice University, where her team won the Women’s Basketball Invitational Championship four years ago this month.  One year later they made it to the second round of the

CSR 108 Sister Mary Jo Sobieck

Sister Mary Jo Sobieck Episode 108 22 FEB 2021 She drew national attention just under two years ago when she was nominated for an ESPY for “Best Viral Sports Moment” for when she threw out a ceremonial first pitch before

CSR 107 Peter Belisle

Peter Belisle Episode 107 15 FEB 2021 He is in his 15th season as the head men’s ice hockey coach at UMass Boston, where he is the winningest coach in program history.  Along the way he has earned National Coach

CSR 106 Trevor Williams

Trevor Williams Episode 106 8 FEB 2021 A pitcher getting ready for spring training with the Chicago Cubs. He had been with the Pittsburgh Pirates organization from 2016-2020, having initially been drafted into Major League Baseball as a second round

CSR 105 Two Year Anniversary

Two Year Anniversary Episode 105 1 FEB 2021 Catholic Sports Radio hits its two-year anniversary — to the exact day — and, ironically, this episode takes a turn that is a first in the show’s 100-plus episode history. Listen for

CSR 104 Jay Stricherz

Jay Stricherz Episode 104 25 JAN 2021 A PAC-12 Conference Football supervisor, having previously been a PAC-10 and PAC-12 Conference football referee for 34 years, including having officiated over 20 bowl games, which saw him do two Cotton Bowls, two

CSR 103 Dr. Rosemary Buckle

Dr. Rosemary Buckle Episode 103 18 JAN 2021 An orthopedic surgeon who sees a lot of athletes, she is an avid runner, not only having ran track in high school and college but she has done three IronMan races and

CSR 109 Gabby Otto2021-03-03T16:02:50-05:00

Gabby Otto

Episode 109

1 MAR 2021

She played college basketball at Rice University, where her team won the Women’s Basketball Invitational Championship four years ago this month.  One year later they made it to the second round of the NIT before losing to New Mexico. Growing up, in addition to basketball, she had also played soccer and boys baseball, and she ran track and field. Faith-wise she shares testimony regarding dealing with major sports injuries, plus, a powerful and emotional story from within her immediate family.

Guest quotes:

“Even though I didn’t go to any Catholic schools growing up, Mass was still really important in my family.  Every single Sunday we were at church in the morning or we’d go to the 5:30 Life Teen kids Mass.  And then just growing up and playing sports, a lot of times you have tournament games Sunday afternoon.  And no matter what, we were finding a church in the local area that the tournament was hosted in and going to Mass pretty much no matter what so that we were able to receive the Eucharist.”

“Mass was kind of the center point of our family, somewhere that, when you have four kids schedules are always crazy, but it was the one place that we could kind of always be together and worship together.”

“That was definitely a really tough time that kind of tests your faith ’cause it’s a goal you’ve been working for, literally, almost your whole life.”

“I look back and it’s a blessing that I didn’t tear my ACL or blow my knee out playing basketball ’cause I think just mentally that would’ve been a whole ‘nother obstacle to overcome.  So, looking back, in retrospect you can always see the blessing.”

“I had to rely on my faith a lot of the time just to kind of just even get me through that season.”

“I think anytime you go through something hard like that you kind of lean into the friendships around you and you surround yourself with people that are going to uplift you and point you to the cross.”

“In my time at Rice (University) I became very active in… Fellowship of Christian Athletes and that was probably the single most influential thing in my faith walk in college.”

“If you talk about watching a parent love their child, it was just one of those things that you look back and you’re like, ‘That is what love is.’  And ultimately, that’s what Christ did for us.”

(This episode contains a prayer originally excerpted and adapted from Day By Day: The Notre Dame Prayerbook for Students by Thomas McNally, as seen in Play Like A Champion Today’s prayerbook for sports, God, Be In My Sport)
CSR 108 Sister Mary Jo Sobieck2021-03-03T16:02:07-05:00

Sister Mary Jo Sobieck

Episode 108

22 FEB 2021

She drew national attention just under two years ago when she was nominated for an ESPY for “Best Viral Sports Moment” for when she threw out a ceremonial first pitch before a Chicago White Sox game.  She has been a nun for more than 25 years and is part of the Dominican Sisters of Springfield. In her days as a student-athlete she played softball, volleyball, and basketball. You’ll also hear mention in this interview about her having trained for a half marathon.  Last year she concluded 13 years at a Catholic high school in Chicago, including teaching theology there.

Guest quotes:

“Mom was just rock solid in her prayer life and in her trust in God.”

“We learned that, and that everything happens for a reason.  And so, that sense of listening to God’s voice and finding out, ya’ know, what does life really mean for us in the events of life as they happen, and as they shape us.”

“My mom was a real proponent of the rosary.  We prayed the rosary together as a family during the month of October and May.”

“My dream was to be in the Olympics.”

“Sports grounded me in a sense of discipline.”

“It was on one of our last days of a retreat that I really felt overcome with this sense of God just pouring God’s life into me and God’s love into me.”

“God invited me to this and my life has never been the same and I couldn’t be happier.”

“The red carpet was just a real, that was a moving moment for me too, ya’ know, I’m in the midst of this worldly, ya’ know, all this glamour and glitz, and, what came to me was, God sees the soul, not the swag.”

“I had a profound gift and opportunity to take a group of kids to Lourdes on a pilgrimage.  Well, we went to World Youth Day in Madrid in 2011 to see Pope Benedict.  But, prior to that we went to Fatima and to Lourdes.”

“I had a profound experience of God’s love again for me in the Eucharist.  And… in the Eucharist I thought to myself… I thought, ‘I’m going to make a triathlon of sacraments today. … I’m going to find a priest and go to confession… and then, of course, to renew my baptismal vows’.”

CSR 107 Peter Belisle2021-02-14T15:59:24-05:00

Peter Belisle

Episode 107

15 FEB 2021

He is in his 15th season as the head men’s ice hockey coach at UMass Boston, where he is the winningest coach in program history.  Along the way he has earned National Coach of the Year honors and has guided his team to the NCAA Frozen Four. Prior to his current role he spent nine years with Division I University of Connecticut as an assistant coach.  As a student-athlete he had been a four-year letter winner with UConn.

Guest quotes:

“Very religious, ya’ know, growing up at Mt. St. Charles Academy, being, just, ya’ know, I spent all my days with the Brothers of the Sacred Heart.”

“My faith through mom and dad… and St. James, just, my memories are in that church with my family.”

“The bond that we had… it’s just divine intervention when you think of the whole story between my family and hockey, okay?  My brother David gets cut by Lou Lamoriello at Providence College after playing, I think it was his senior year, and he was down, and dad hired him as an assistant coach, and they go on to win 26 state consecutive titles.  And I was a little kid… so I saw that all that in front of my eyes… being on the bus as a stick manager, equipment guy.”

“My mom was the rock… She had ETWN, the Catholic channel, TV channel, on all the time, religiously, like, every day, 24 hours a day, and just a woman of faith, church every Sunday, church every day after my dad had his skull fracture.”

“I’ve been so blessed in my life with my parents and my sport of hockey because of my family.”

“Looking for my calling I didn’t know, and then, I said, ‘Maybe I do want to get into coaching hockey’ … and I got an opportunity at the College of Holy Cross to go back and work as an assistant coach and it was one of the best years of my life.  I was, like, so passionate about, ‘This is what I want to do’!”

“People ask me my coaching philosophy and it’s easy.  I want to make better men through the game of hockey.”

“There’s so much you can take from the game and really implement into just good lessons in life and what Jesus wants us and how He wants us to be.”

Related links:

Peter’s UMass coaching bio

Interview with Peter’s brother (David) on CSR 54

(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 106 Trevor Williams2021-02-07T16:27:46-05:00

Trevor Williams

Episode 106

8 FEB 2021

A pitcher getting ready for spring training with the Chicago Cubs. He had been with the Pittsburgh Pirates organization from 2016-2020, having initially been drafted into Major League Baseball as a second round pick by the Miami Marlins. As a student-athlete he had played his college baseball at Arizona State University. He is also co-founder of an organization called Project Thirty Four.  He’s a very dedicated member of the Knights of Columbus too.

Guest quotes:

“Born and raised Catholic… I am the oldest of three boys… We grew up going to CCD classes.  We grew up going to Mass every Sunday.”

“It wasn’t until high school, for me, it wasn’t really until my Confirmation class in my junior year of high school is where I started taking more serious CCD and the church.  And, really, Catholicism was part of my life for so long and it was always there, I just never reached out and dove into it as much as I should have when I was younger.”

“I had an experience where I full gave my trust to the Lord and fully kind of just dove in and made the decision where like, ‘Ya’ know, what is the most important thing in my life.’  It was at an intersection in my life where baseball was becoming real.  It was becoming tangible.  I was going through some family tragedy, and it was where I just had to kind of look within myself and know, where am I getting this strength and what do I need to look upon and what do I need to do, and it was Christ’s church and the sacraments and making that decision.”

“The first immediate thing is, why did this happen to him?  Why didn’t it happen to me?  And why did this guy who had such a bright future in baseball, why did this happen to him?  And you spiral down those thoughts.”

“It made me reflect that, what is the most important thing in my life, and would I be okay with it if it was taken away from me?”

“It’s a reminder when I put the jersey on every day during the season that this is special and this is a gift and this is something that will be taken away from me, either on my own terms or something else.  But, it’s something that I’m constantly reminded of where that this is a gift from Christ and it’s a gift that there’s a reason why I’m still playing and I’m constantly searching for that answer and I’m constantly everyday taking up that cross and saying, ‘Lead me to what You want me to do’.”

“You can find a of parallels to your faith life into sports.  Just as sports can teach you a lot about life, I think there’s always stories from the church and our tradition and with saints that have gone through literally everything that we’ve gone through and more.”

“Over the last ten, fifteen years they’ve been pushing to have Mass at every MLB stadium on either Saturdays or Sundays.”

“The prayer I pray before every start is Jesus, I trust in You.  And it’s a humbling prayer and it’s a prayer of humility.”

Related link:

Project Thirty Four

(This episode contains a prayer attributed to legendary Notre Dame football coach Knute Rockne, as seen in Play Like A Champion Today’s prayerbook for sports, God, Be In My Sport)
CSR 105 Two Year Anniversary2021-01-28T12:04:41-05:00

Two Year Anniversary

Episode 105

1 FEB 2021

Catholic Sports Radio hits its two-year anniversary — to the exact day — and, ironically, this episode takes a turn that is a first in the show’s 100-plus episode history. Listen for that as well as some data about the listenership that the show has enjoyed.

CSR 104 Jay Stricherz2021-01-24T19:45:45-05:00

Jay Stricherz

Episode 104

25 JAN 2021

A PAC-12 Conference Football supervisor, having previously been a PAC-10 and PAC-12 Conference football referee for 34 years, including having officiated over 20 bowl games, which saw him do two Cotton Bowls, two Sugar Bowls, and two Fiesta Bowls. In addition, he spent nine years as a softball coach at a Catholic high school in Tacoma, Washington.

Guest quotes:

“(I) absolutely loved working there with students and families that had a lot of needs, more than the average or most families.  So, certainly a real ministry… I knew that’s what I wanted to do to help others.”

“(I) loved the aspect of being a part of a team, being a part of something much bigger than just yourself, and committing to the team concept.”

“I think being Catholic was probably the number one thing that we were.  No matter what we were, we were Catholic.”

“There’s five of us in the family and it was Mass every Sunday.  If we were traveling it was going to Mass.  We were going to confession once a month.  And during Lent we were saying the rosary every night.  Looking back on it particularly, it was wonderful – a wonderful faith upbringing.”

“I would, through the years, say my own kind of silent, quiet prayers before games.”

“I went from being a head linesman on the crew… and I became the referee… So, I started to ask for a little more help from the good Lord than I had previously.”

“I got through a series of prayers that I would always say before the games, personally myself.  I’d say the rosary myself and then I’d say a series of prayers.”

“Our crew, we started having a pre-game prayer, a pre-game little session of inspiration.”

“I belong to an ecumenical prayer group with eleven men.  We meet every other Tuesday morning and we go through the gospels and all the New Testament and the Hebrew scriptures and it’s a wonderful aspect of learning about one another.”

“If you’ve got kids that are in a local Catholic school you’re gonna get involved yourself… So, I got on a number of committees… and became a part of the Board of Directors… and got into the Ignatian spirituality.”

“Through sports there is a lot of spirituality and a lot of opportunity to pass on God’s Word and Christ’s Word.”

CSR 103 Dr. Rosemary Buckle2021-01-20T16:09:41-05:00