Posts Tagged ‘basketball’

National Award Caps Remarkable College Experience

Erik Mendoza has been playing basketball for as long as he can remember. Like most kids, he learned the basics from dad in his front driveway. But unlike most kids, Mendoza began attending the Chicago Bulls Training Academy when he was 8. It was the '90s in Chicago. The Bulls were heroes; Michael Jordan was a king.

Mendoza, a die-hard Jordan fan, stayed at the academy until he was 15. After playing all four years of high school, he was ready to compete at the college level. A small school didn't appeal to him. He definitely wasn't planning on going to Multnomah.

erik_main‘Jesus has changed my life’

Mendoza’s step-dad and step-grandfather had attended MU. They had great things to say about the close-knit school in Portland. So despite some misgivings, Mendoza decided to visit.

Ultimately, it was the people that won him over.

"I was excited to move out West," he said. "And I had this curiosity about my faith."

Mendoza had been raised in the Church, but he was uncertain about what he'd learned there. Things changed when he moved onto campus his first year.

"When I came to MU, I was tired of an empty life," he said. Four years later, Mendoza is a different man. "Jesus has changed my life," he said. "He has given me so much peace."

Mendoza was also given endless opportunities to mature as an athlete and a Christ follower. His heart for others did not go unnoticed: This year, he was honored with the Pete Maravich Memorial Award, a national honor that annually recognizes an outstanding NCCAA senior who has shown excellence in competition, skill, academics and service.

‘I didn’t want to leave’

A year into Multnomah, Mendoza wasn't sure he was going to stay. He had developed a strong interest in business and marketing. At the time, MU had yet to launch its business program, so Mendoza considered transferring to a different school. He couldn't do it.

"I had made such good relationships here," he said. "I didn't want to leave."

The more he spoke to people about his interest in marketing, the more he felt a pull toward a psychology degree. Ultimately, he decided he could stay at MU and work toward the business world.

‘I've learned so much’

And that's exactly what Mendoza has done. During his sophomore year, he began working as a product tester for one of the world's top sports brands, Adidas. Every couple months, he'd take a pair of prototype shoes home and "wear the heck out of them." Over the next several months, Mendoza would take detailed notes on how the shoes felt, performed and stood up to countless hours in the court. Then he’d submit his observations to Adidas before starting the process all over again.

After two years of testing shoes, Mendoza interned in the product development department. The rapport he's built with Adidas, coupled with the experience he's gained at MU, has opened several doors for him. Since graduating in May, Adidas has hired him as a full-time retail marketing specialist for its basketball, baseball and football divisions.

"I have no marketing experience," Mendoza said. "But through earning my psychology degree, I've learned so much about how people work. To translate that into marketing has not been that hard; it's actually given me a boost in how I view marketing."

Mendoza hasn't only learned how people think, he's also come to appreciate others more than ever. His second major, Bible & Theology, has helped him do that. "I love the layout of the program — that you get to go through the whole Bible in four years," he said. "And I appreciated the teaching. The professors are fantastic; they make it such a strong program, and they relate the Bible to real life."

erik_slider

A better and stronger person’

But it's the basketball team that's been the driving force in Mendoza's life these past four years.

"The team was the catalyst for me being at this school, learning what I've learned," he said. "It was always the one constant thing in my life."

Mendoza thrived while playing for the Lions. He served as team captain for three years. Basketball coach Curt Bickley puts a heavy emphasis on missions and community service; he's accompanied Mendoza and his team on mission trips to the Czech Republic and Taiwan. Mendoza has also volunteered, alongside his teammates, at Providence Children's Hospital for the past four years.

"All these things make the basketball team more than a basketball team," he said. "Coach Bickley is a fantastic role model. He creates men. He'll be blunt with you. But if you stick around, you'll come out a better and stronger person. He's one of the people here who has impacted me the most."

‘It’s been a good four years’

It was because of Bickley that Erik was nominated for the Pete Maravich Memorial Award.

"It never crossed my mind that I'd be nominated," Mendoza said. But Bickley had been impressed by Mendoza's growth during his time at MU, and he recommended him to the group of coaches that determines the award-winner.

The coaches voted for Mendoza.

When Bickley called him with the news, Mendoza was shocked. "I hadn't known I was even nominated until he called me and told me I'd won," he said. "I was pretty blown away."

The award seemed to come at the perfect time.

"I had been really anxious and scared about my basketball career ending, and I was trying to ignore it," he said. "It was bittersweet — but amazing — to see how God wrapped up my time here: The season came to an end, I made my last shot and then I found out about the award.

"I felt like it was God's way of saying, 'You've done a good job here, but it doesn't have to be sad. It's been a good four years, but it's time to move on to the next phase.'"

MU Basketball Team Shares Gospel in Taiwan

tipsCoach Curt Bickley shares the details of the Lions' mission trip to Taiwan this month. 

Multnomah in Taiwan

The basketball team flew to Taipei on May 9 and spent the week playing basketball games and sharing the Gospel. We were able to share the Gospel publicly 12 times during the week.

Thanks to our Taiwan missionaries for all their help and for making this trip work:

  • Uwe Maurer
  • Rex Manu
  • Dave Freeman
  • Garrett Freeman
  • Dan Long

Games

We played 8 games in 6 days. At each game, we were able to share the Gospel with the other team and their fans at halftime. All the teams were very open to listening to the mission of our trip.

We handed out bracelets that said Multnomah University on one side and John 3:16 on the other. We told the crowd to Google both. Our interpreters were great, and there were times when we even used guys from the other team to interpret.

TAIWAN TECH

Bethany Christian School

We visited Bethany on Tuesday morning. Stevie Sansone and Davey Walker shared their testimonies with the kids after I spoke. We played Hot Box free throws with the kids and had a great time.

bethany

Taichung Elderly Home Visit

Rex Manu set up a great visit for our guys. We listened to Grandma Wu share her life story, and then the residents listened to me share mine. Our guys then massaged the arms and hands of the elderly and then Rex shared the plan of salvation. Eight people who wanted assurance of a home in Heaven raised their hands.

ELDERLY HOME

granny

Kinmenn Islands

We flew out to the Kinmenn Islands and spent the day on scooters riding around both islands before we made our way out the the only school on the island. We spent time with the junior high, gave them Jeremy Lin books and shared the gospel. It was the first American basketball team to ever visit their school.

FOOD

SCOOTERS

Love Life Basketball Game

Saturday night was a special treat for everyone: We played the SBL All Star team (Taiwan Pro League). The purpose of the game was to raise awareness and money for kids with cancer. We did not know how big of an event it was until we showed up and saw hundreds of fans lined up to get in an hour before the game.

During the introduction of players, each player from both teams came out with one of the children. Blackie Chen prayed for the kids with both teams out on the court.

TEAM

At halftime, I was able to share the Gospel with over 700 fans and players. After the game, we spent time with everyone involved. We actually won the game by a score of 63-56, surprising most. Our guys represented MU extremely well that night; it was a great success.

ll5

 Thank you to all our donors that made this trip happen! 

— Coach Bickley

Lions and Sports and Fun — Oh My! You’re Invited to MU’s Free Athletics Alumni Day

This Saturday, February 15, Multnomah Athletics is hosting a special Athletics Alumni Day to celebrate all past and current MU athletes. This event is free, and everyone – alumni, students, staff and faculty – is invited and encouraged to bring friends, family, neighbors, youth groups and anyone else who will enjoy the day. Come prepared to dive into 12 hours packed with games, competition, camaraderie and lots of fun. Read the rest of this entry »

Lions Homecoming Basketball Has National Tournament Implications

Comments Off Written on February 15th, 2012 by
Categories: 75th Anniversary, Alumni, Athletics, Faculty, General, Students
Lions Homecoming Basketball Has National Tournament Implications

Basketball, Mascots, Homecoming, and Prizes!

Join the Multnomah Lions for their Homecoming Week celebration home game:

Read the rest of this entry »

Flashback: ’50s & ’80s Athletics Apparel

Comments Off Written on December 27th, 2011 by
Categories: 75th Anniversary, Alumni, Athletics, General, Students
Flashback: ’50s & ’80s Athletics Apparel

Memories From The 1950's

We've been publishing posts for our 75th Anniversary year featuring some of the goodies from yesteryear we've been finding...some of you actually sent us some old gear! We were especially excited to receive this letter sweater from an Alumna who still had her original class of 1951 class pin attached! Just look at that thing - something tells me that current students would really go for a true "throwback" style like this.

Read the rest of this entry »

Blazers vs. Celtics

1 Comment » Written on February 15th, 2011 by
Categories: Alumni, Athletics, General, Students
Blazers vs. Celtics

Play Ball!

Thousands of people roaring, lights flashing, and the smell of fast food was in the air as we all sat at the edge of our seats – eyes glued to the moves of our favored team members that would determine the win. Surrounded by 80 or so Multnomah alumni and students, I sat in my seat both stunned and fascinated. My first Blazers game! The crowd was a smattering of Christmas colors as Read the rest of this entry »

Alumni-Student Blazers Basketball Game Night 2010!

4 comments Written on January 5th, 2010 by
Categories: Alumni, General, Students

Come to the 3rd Annual Multnomah Night with the Blazers. (This time we're giving away a free tote-bag too!)

See photos of this annual event

01_BlazerGame06_BlazerGame10_BlazerGame

The Game

Sign Up and Pay

We bought 200 tickets and there are only 60 left!

Many of you have expressed interest, but not yet paid. We are only holding/sending tickets for folks who have actually paid for them. 

Hoodie_greyv2greenU (1)Wear Some Multnomah Gear!

Also, don't forget that all participants will get a free Alumni Association Tote-bag!

Homecoming Week Is Upon Us!

Comments Off Written on September 16th, 2009 by
Categories: Alumni, General, Pray For MU, Students

It’s time to come home to Multnomah!  Homecoming Week 2009 has something for everyone. 

Homecoming Week 2009 

From chapel worship to food, sport activities, class visits, to social events – you are sure to find an event that will help you relive an old memory or create a new tradition on Multnomah’s campus today. Alumni and Students together with Faculty and Staff again - it's a beautiful thing!

Download Full Postcard (PDF) 

Homecoming_09_final

And...come see Mitch the Lion pump up the crowd and enter to win a new iPod!

(Also, you might see this event on Facebook...you should still RSVP to the Alumni Dept no matter what - especially if you want to make arrangements to visit classes!)

Taiwan Trip Wrap-Up

Comments Off Written on May 28th, 2009 by
Categories: Alumni, Athletics, Faculty, General, Missions, Students

Anyone who has ever been on a mission trip knows that it's hard to capture all that was experienced. I was showing my wife some pictures and I said, "I wish I could have captured some of the SMELLS!" (On second-thought, maybe it's best that some things can't be captured?)

3 Days Back

christ-campI've been back from Taiwan now for about 3 days and I've been trying to reflect on my experience. It's difficult to put everything into words but I walked away with at least one big thought in mind; Multnomah students are truly unique.

MU Students Boldly Sharing The Gospel

kidsWatching Multnomah students minister to others was probably the most amazing part of the trip. They boldly shared the gospel of Christ in words and actions. They ministered to groups of students from kindergarten through college and our students did an incredible job of being Christ to these students. Sometimes it was in words as they shared their testimonies, spoke with them, and laughed. Other times it was through acts of service or even a "high five" when the language barrier was too much. This group of students were capable, qualified, and passionate servants of Christ and I was blessed to be a part of their efforts.

Shameless Plug

And (to shamelessly toot Multnomah's horn), I can't help but think that God has used Multnomah to help shape their character and calling.

Personal Growth

jeff-and-jerryPersonally, I was also ministered too. I went into this trip with just a little bit of anxiety because I hardly knew any of the students. Sure, Multnomah is small enough to know who most people are, but I felt like I only knew most of them by name or superficially. It was awesome to see a group of close, tight-knit students welcome me into their team and allow me to do ministry with them. I was encouraged and felt like I made new friends.

Also, it was a ton of fun. If you have never been on any kind of short-term missions experience, Go. It's fun, challenging, and always worth the effort.

Taiwan Trip Update 4

Two More Days 

taipei-101On Thursday, we spent the first part of our day visiting the Taipei 101.  I think this is the world's tallest building.  Even if it isn't, it does boast the world's fastest elevator.  It took only 43 seconds to go up 84 floors.  It was a bit foggy, but we still had a great view of the city.  We enjoyed the chance to see some of the sights and ate lunch downtown as well.

 Youth Groups and Night Markets

night-marketAfter the Taipei 101, we went back to the Bethany Academy and led a youth group service they have on Thursday evenings.  Many of the Bethany students that we met on Tuesday were attending.  The students led us in worship and then we had two of our students speak.  After our students spoke, we broke up into small groups to further explore some of the ideas that were shared.  Once the youth group ended, many of us went down to the Shilin Night Market do some exploring. 

Ensuring The The Gospel Is Heard

Friday we spent our morning back at Christ's College.  We led their chapel service which is about an hour and a half long.  We began with two of our students singing a special song and then we showed a video that showed off our campus.  After that I spoke about Multnomah's programs and then we had two student testimonies.  Coach Bickley finished off by sharing a short story and the gospel message. 

About half of the students at Christ's College are not believers and we wanted to be sure that they had the opportunity to hear the gospel. 

zooThe afternoon and evening were spent hanging out all over Taipei with students from Christ's College.  Some students went to Danshui, some went to the Shilin Night Market, and I went with a group of students to the Taipei Zoo.  It was really great to see the city and to get to know the students from Christ's College better.  Besides that, they were great tour guides.

Colin Wyenberg
Admissions Counselor
Multnomah Bible College