This past month, Uncommon Sports Group hosted twenty-two Academy graduates in Minneapolis, MN, for an Impact Weekend alongside the Christians Working in Sports (CWS) Conference. USG offers a fully funded Impact Weekend for every individual who completes the eight-week virtual USG Academy. These weekends provide Academy graduates with the opportunity to put what they have learned in the virtual Academy into action, as well as networking with present leaders of the college and pro sport industry, fellowshipping with other Christians in sports, and being challenged to grow in their walk with Christ. Read a full recap of the Minneapolis Impact Weekend here.
One of our participants during the Impact Weekend, Alexis Uffmann, is presently working as an Assistant Women's Basketball Coach at Valdosta State University. Below is Alexis' testimony of her experience during the Impact Weekend:
"For so long, I have struggled with how to navigate religion in the sport industry. As a player, I felt I was able to speak freely about my belief in God, and it was accepted. However, once I graduated and I became a coach, it became difficult to appeal to every audience. It felt like I had to hide parts of myself in order to make others comfortable because I was being paid to do so. I wouldn’t want a relationship where someone only communicated with me and loved me behind closed doors, so why would God want that? This was the question I had been struggling with for months.
Then my Graduate Assistant told me about an Academy she was going through with USG. Through the Academy, I learned that I am not a basketball coach who is also a Christian. I am a Christian who is also a basketball coach. The Impact Weekend helped me learn and grow spiritually and professionally with like-minded individuals who live out their Christian faith in public sports settings. One speaker stated, “If people don’t know what you are for or what you are against, how do they know who they can come to in their time of need?” The Impact Weekend allowed God to impress on my heart the desire to start a Bible Study with my team and colleagues for this upcoming season. I don’t want to let the urgent tasks of the day and the urgent need for a paycheck get in the way of the important; God’s work.
I believe God has me in the sport industry so He can work through me as a spiritual leader for my players. Leading them to God is the biggest win I could ever ask for. Everyone is longing for God’s love, acceptance, and peace, whether they know it or not. I hope that my players can learn to love the blessing of the sport and not identify as the sport. Thank you, USG, for this revelation and this teaching that made for a life-changing experience."- Alexis Uffmann, Valdosta State University
It was so encouraging to see how God used this Impact Weekend and the CWS Conference to challenge, encourage, and grow the participants in their faith and career. We are grateful to Alexis for her testimony and commitment to serving Christ through the sport industry.
If you're interested in learning more about Uncommon Sports Group and how we can come alongside you as a Christian in the sport industry, click here to get in contact with us, or click here to apply to join the USG Academy!