I can’t say there was any one defining moment. But I think the course in which my life has taken with the NFL, and all the things I’ve went through in life, helped to steer me in the right direction.
When my playing days were over and I went back to school to complete my degree, I remember sitting in front of what we called the Towers in front of the stadium and crying my eyes out. The one thing I was hearing God say to me was, ‘All this time, I was preparing you to come back to ministry. Football was just a platform and allowed you to do everything your way, but now we are going to do it my way.’ It was so humbling to hear because here I was, 30 years old, back on campus without a home or anywhere to stay.
I came to Columbus, Ohio with a bag of clothes and an air mattress with a hole in it. I had to go back to the beginning and just start over. It was a great time for me to reflect.
People say you’re done playing when the phone stops ringing – it’s true. The lightbulb moment after the phone stops ringing is now the athlete has to be the one to pick up the phone. People are still willing to answer your call, take time to give you advice, share what they’ve learned. The difference is, it’s uncomfortable and uncommon to be the one to do that. In sports, your agent or your business manager is calling for you, getting offers, getting promotions, finding everything for you. It was a lightbulb moment to say, ‘Okay, I have to make the calls and reach out to people.