You may know him as the "Cinderella" quarterback of the St. Louis Rams and a two-time winner of the NFL Most Valuable Player award. You may have heard about his incredible testimony, or his record of service to the community.  But did you know that Kurt Warner is also a cartoon character? Well, he is not an animated character, but in The Good Sports Gang, Warner lives in the cartoon town of Fairfield, doling out advice to a friendly talking football, a feisty soccer ball, a street-smart volleyball and others.

 

Developed in conjunction with Back Home Studios, the Good Sports Gang videos are designed to promote faith, self-esteem, good sportsmanship and ethical behavior within a sports context that appeals to today's active children.

In the very first episode, "Coach" Warner and his lively gang of bouncing balls help a kid named Elliot, who feels like a loser, learn what it takes to live like a champ.

 

"Each program begins with a mission," Warner explains. "Through video magic, my character notifies the Good Sports that their help is needed in Fairfield. We develop a game plan together, and I send them on their way. Of course, like any good coach, I keep in constant touch with the team and guide and motivate them in their task. Appearing in a cartoon is definitely a new role for me, but one I'm really excited and proud to talk about."

In Nashville recently for Gospel Music Association (GMA) Week, Warner took time out of a busy morning to share with Crosswalk.com's Faith editor, Janet Chismar, his passion and vision for the Good Sports Gang project.

 

Crosswalk.com: What was it that appealed to you about doing an animated series?

 

Kurt Warner:  Well, I think the first thing is that we are always looking for things we can do to use our platform to really influence lives. And the younger kids who like animation, it's hard to get an opportunity to reach them-to talk to them in a small setting where you can really communicate with them.

 

So we figured that an animated video would be a great opportunity to do that-to really share our message, to really get involved where they could see who we were, know who we were, and kind of tie it all in with something they would enjoy and have fun with.

 

And I think that's why we jumped at the opportunity to do this. We felt that we could hit a niche that is really hard to approach, you know, the 4-7 year olds. It's tough to get in and influence those types of kids, so this was a great opportunity to do that.

 

Crosswalk.com: Did you have any input into creating the characters?

 

Kurt Warner:  You know, a lot of the characters were already developed. There was always input though, that I had with different things - whether it was the way they looked, or their characters, or how we wanted to develop story lines to a degree - so I had input on all of that. But when the creators approached me, they had some ideas already in place and we just had to fine tune it from there.