Jerry Lucas: From the Playbook to the Good Book
Mon, 26 Mar 2012 23:31:02 GMT —
He may not have made the millions current NBA basketball players pull-in, in fact Jerry Lucas only made just $30,000 in his first year in the league.
However, it was still pro ball and Lucas walked away from it with three years left on a contract with the New York Knicks in 1974, not because of an injury but because of a higher power.
The decision didn't exactly sit well with his teammates.
"They thought I was crazy, giving up an NBA career," said Lucas, who was in Maumee speaking at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. "But I knew what I was supposed to do with my life. God called me to a ministry and I was going to be obedient to that so, I'm thankful I did."
Lucas, who will turn 72 this week, has never looked back.
"I never missed it. Not even one iota of a second."
He says he's turned down millions of dollars in broadcasting opportunities to minister to 'about 30' churches a year.
The 6-foot-8-inch, former two-time Mr. Basketball in the Buckeye State was named one of the '50 greatest' NBA players of all-time and won a national championship at Ohio State in 1960.
He says he doesn't watch much television and hasn't seen much of this year's squad but does recall his three Final Four appearances.
"We won one of them and lost two of them," said Lucas. "Both years we lost we were a better team but on that particular night we weren't. So, you have to be at your best at the right time and hopefully the Buckeyes will be."
Lucas, who is also known as Dr. Memory for his uncanny recall ability, will step away from public speaking for '6 months to a year' to launch an educational website for kids called, Dr. M's universe.
You can preview Dr. M's universe here.