Evel Knievel's faith remembered
Calling the Shots
CBS sports analyst Clark Kellogg talks about Jesus and jump shots.
Millions of college hoops fans will hear Clark Kellogg hold court on power forwards, full-court presses and the Final Four this season. The CBS basketball analyst hopes his love for God is as evident as his passion for the game—even if the conversation centers on jump shots instead of Jesus.
"We're all ambassadors of Christ," says Kellogg, who starts his 15th season with CBS. "The aroma of Christ should be flowing out of our thoughts, actions and words. Who I am in Christ is my life. It's consistently on display—and I hope to God's glory—in spite of my warts and occasional stumbles."
Kellogg was a self-described "happy pagan" as a star at Ohio State, where he earned Big Ten Conference MVP honors in 1982. The NBA's Indiana Pacers made him a first-round draft pick the same year. But a chronic knee injury cut short Kellogg's pro career and started his quest to find a deeper meaning.
"[Retiring] was difficult," says Kellogg, 46, who played five seasons with the Pacers. "The uncertainty that comes with that is uncomfortable. I was searching and probably open to the things of God."
With the help of several spiritual mentors, including a Pacers team chaplain, Kellogg and his wife, Rosy, both became Christians in November 1986.
"It was a freedom and a newness of purpose I can't even explain," he says. Kellogg traces his gift for gab partly to his mother.
"She told me, 'If you're going to be in front of a microphone, you'd better be able to put a sentence together,'" Kellogg says with a laugh.
Kellogg jumped at the chance to call basketball games when his playing days ended. A successful stint at ESPN led him to CBS. Now for three weeks every March, Kellogg's life revolves around the wildly popular NCAA basketball tournament. He's in the studio from the bracket-busting first-round upsets until the champion trims the nets.
"Those are long days," he says. "But it's so much fun, you're operating on adrenalin. [The challenge] is staying energized."
When Kellogg isn't broadcasting games, he's watching his kids play them. Kellogg's daughter, Courtney, plays volleyball at Georgia Tech and his son Alex is a basketball player at Providence College. His son Nick is a high school hoops star in the family's home of Westerville, Ohio.
"It's a real treat and a blessing to watch them," Kellogg says. "I try to be as low key as a 6-8 black man can be. I just try to encourage and support my kids."
Evel No More. When iconic daredevil Evel Knievel died at 69 last November, many were surprised—not by his passing—but that he lived as long as he did. The fearless showman made a name for himself in the '70s with death-defying jumps and spectacular crashes. But the life of the hard-living legend had a surprise ending. Just months before succumbing to idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, Knievel was baptized during the Rev. Robert Schuller's Hour of Power service at the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. "I've accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior," Knievel says. The stuntman's conversion prompted an impromptu mass baptism that morning. Though Knievel would die six months later, it seems his last jump had a succesful landing.
Perfect Weight Challenge. The years have not been kind to New Man editor Drew Dyck. In five years of marriage he has ballooned from 190 to nearly 240 pounds. He says it's his wife's good cooking—of course his love of fast food and his hatred of treadmills probably don't help either. Whatever the cause, today the former college athlete is a pudgy, unhealthy couch potato. But he's taking action. Drew started the diet Perfect Weight America by Jordan Rubin, author of The Maker's Diet. During the four-month program, Drew will be blogging about his experience. If you need to shed a few pounds too, join him on the program. Check out his progress by visiting newmanmag.com/weightloss.