Hurricanes head coach Mark Richt is a man of faith, a man of compassion and one heck of a football coach, taking the unranked Miami Hurricanes and turning them into a winning football team and helping them become one of the top 25 tams in the nation. But what sets Mark Richt apart from most coaches is his compassion towards the players and how he wants his players to not only grow to become great players but to become great men.
When Coach Richt heard that some of his players didn’t have Bibles and that some of the ones who did had older versions — which made it harder to read and understand — he sought out the help of the team chaplain Steve DeBardelaben in order to make sure that everyone on the team had a Bible.
“DeBardelaben helped Richt acquire enough Bibles for his entire team and coaching staff and had each one personalized. During Sunday’s team meetings, the Bibles were given out and Richt said that while it was optional his players and staffers take them, he wanted to make sure everyone had the option of having a new Bible if they wanted it,” reported the Sun Sentinel.
“I told the guys, ‘It’s a choice. If you want to just leave it at the chair, you can. If you want to take it with you, you can. If you want to give it to somebody, you can. But I just heard enough guys say they didn’t have one and some guys said they had older versions that were harder to understand,” Richt said Wednesday. “We have chapel before the games and its 100 percent voluntary. Some guys go, and some guys don’t. There will be times I’ll give them those wise sayings from Proverbs, the book of wisdom. If anyone would take the challenge of reading a proverb a day, you’re going to get wiser. It’s good stuff. I just wanted to make it available to them.”
Defensive end Demetrius Jackson who is referred to as “The Preacher” by other teammates said that Coach Richt is “genuine and he’s the man he says he is. He just showed us he honestly cares about us and I know if I can trust him, we can all trust him.”
“It’s shows us that he really cares. He could’ve just handed us a playbook instead, or something else. But he handed us Bibles, something different. It lets us know he wants good for us,” said Safety Rayshawn Jenkins.
Two years ago Billy Graham Evangelistic Association of Canada came out with a story title Mark Richt: Bulldog For Jesus in which it highlighted some of who Mark Richt is. “Mark and his wife, Katharyn, have taken mission trips to Honduras and desire to be a blessing to others through giving. Conflicted about owning a $2 million vacation home on Lake Hartwell, they gave the home away for use by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes,” reported the BGEA.
“I’ve been in the Marine Corps, I’ve been a sheriff’s deputy, and I’ve seen people get promoted,” said Georgia team chaplain Kevin Hynes, who has been married to Richt’s sister Mikki for 18 years.
“I’ve never seen a man get more humble with more success, but that’s just what God has done in his life.”
I’m honored to have Mark Richt as the head coach to my hometown team, The Miami Hurricanes, but what should inspire not only his players but the rest of the organization is the fact that they have Man of God on their side who will do anything for their team, even if it is just a simple gesture of handing out some bibles.
What do you think of Mark Richt handing out some bibles to his team? Let us know!
(H/T – The Miami Herald)
Follow me on twitter at BYR_Miguel