Thousands flock to hear the Gospel from football players

By November 2, 2006

USA (MNN/CDR) — The highest-ranked college football team in the United States is giving credit to a higher power for their success — God.

Thousands packed an arena on the Ohio State campus Monday night to listen to coach Jim Tressel and several members of the Number 1 team in college football talk about Christianity, and how it affects their lives and their sport.

“Once you understand that God is behind everything, it gives you strength,” wide receiver Roy Hall told the crowd.

What was called ‘The Main Event’ at times resembled a pep rally, with a band playing and game highlights running on projection screens at St. John Arena.

Some arrived in church buses from across Ohio for the 90-minute event.

“It’s interesting, the Christians on the team. You don’t get to hear about that,” Rodney Morgan, 40, of Columbus.

Tressel said he wanted to step away from his role of coach and speak “as a child of God.” He told the crowd that in 1969 he attended a high school sports summer camp where retired New York Yankees second baseman Bobby Richardson asked him, “If the game of life ended tonight, would you be a winner?”

Tressel asked that same question to the crowd and told people how they could have a relationship with Christ.

Senior Joe Penton echoed those comments. “We would feel so bad talking about our relationship with Christ tonight, without giving you an opportunity to enter into that very same relationship, Penton says. “When Jesus Christ, God in human flesh, died on that cross, he took on the penalty for our sin. Because he paid it, we can have a relationship with Him. We can know Him personally. We can have the promise of eternal life — living forever with God.”

Pray that seeds of the Gospel will grow in the hearts of people who heard the Gospel for the first time.

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