As Bill Blankenship prepares for this third season at Tulsa University, the head football coach is also finding time to share his Christian faith through public speaking engagements.
According to an article by Bill Haisten of Tulsaworld.com, Blankenship most frequently speaks at venues like Spiro's First Baptist Church in his hometown. Armed with effective communication skills and driven to share his Christian testimony, the 56-year-old lives by this verse in 2 Timothy, Chapter 4: "Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage - with great patience and careful instruction."
"I have a personal obligation to use the platform I have," the coach told Haisten.
Golden Hurricane offensive line coach Denver Johnson acknowledged the prevalence of prayer in the TU program, but added no one is compelled to participate.
"The spiritual side of life is important, and our kids embrace that," Johnson said in the article. "It's just a healthy, wholesome atmosphere. It's the culture of our program."
Christian faith has also become an important part of New Orleans offensive lineman Jason Smith, according to Profootballtalk.nbcsports.com. Since being the second overall pick in the 2009 NFL draft, Smith has been on a spiritual journey, he said.
"Upon the moment I received salvation, I understood that my calling is now to suffer, just like Christ did. That's who I am," Smith said. "So therefore, what I went through, my experiences, whether it be football or life, it brought me to a point of patience. So with patience I have experience, and with experience I have hope. And hope makes me not ashamed of what I went through. ... So everything I went through has made me who I am as a person."%3Cimg%20src%3D%22http%3A//beacon.deseretconnect.com/beacon.gif%3Fcid%3D88542%26pid%3D46%22%20/%3E