Only one year ago Vincent Carter was in heavy pursuit of a career in the NFL, looking forward to continued success on the gridiron. From 2001-2005 Vincent anchored the offensive line for the Oklahoma Sooners. Playing before crowds of over 85,000 each week, winning two Big XII Championships, and participating in three BCS bowl games makes for no ordinary experience. His stellar career as a Sooner was one most players dream of, saturated with big crowds, big games, and great individual and team achievements.
Since earning the starting nod as a freshman, Vincent went on to play in 52 of 54 games. In his first year he was named to the Freshman All-American Team, as one of the top young offensive linemen in the country. Over the next three years he was a two-time All-American, three-time Big XII All-Conference, and a two-time finalist for the Remington Award which is given to the nation’s most celebrated center. Not only was he a standout athlete accumulating awards on the field; he also excelled off the field. He was named to the Big XII All-Academic Team, the Commissioner’s Honor Roll, and the Dean’s List. He also received the Prentice Gautt Outstanding Student Award, as well as the Jay Meyers Award for the top 1% of freshmen on campus. He was named captain of the football team his senior year and also served on the Fellowship of Christian Athletes leadership team during his time at the University of Oklahoma.
It is clear that Vincent worked hard to achieve excellence in all areas, earning athletic awards, academic awards, and due to his outstanding character, the respect of family, friends, and the community. According to most publications, his NFL career would be no different from his collegiate. After signing his first contract with the Oakland Raiders in 2005, Vincent believed the same; however, God had something even greater in store for him.
As a child growing up in Waco, Texas, Vincent began developing his relationship with Jesus Christ. From his grandfather, the late Rev. James W. Johnson, Vincent learned what it meant to be a man after God’s own heart. At this young age, Vincent became accustomed to and even quite comfortable with speaking in front of large audiences just as his grandfather did. Many told him that he would one day grow up to be a preacher and from where he stands now, their predictions were not far off.
In the spring of 2006, after a challenge from one of his peers, Vincent realized he had a gift for writing poetry. Over the next few months he participated in numerous poetry readings and made many open mic appearances. Before long his poems evolved into music, which sparked him to record his first song, “When it Rains,” in October of 2006. Upon hearing the first song, family, friends, teammates, and even random strangers were challenged, and they encouraged him to write more. He did, and in March of 2007 he completed his debut album entitled M.A.G.O.H- Man After God’s Own Heart.
Preparing to continue his professional football career, Vincent laid down his pen and paper in early February to join the Arena Football League. Having sat out the entire 2006 season due to injury, he saw it as the best way to prove that he was healthy and ready to go. However, after weeks away from the recording studio, he realized the football field was not the place God wanted him to be. Knowing he would not be able to do both whole-heartedly, Vincent made a choice. He realized that what he once loved had become the thing keeping him from carrying out what he believed to be his calling in life. So in March of 2007, Vincent removed his helmet and cleats for the last time.
Since making this leap of faith. Vincent is certain that he is exactly where he is supposed to be. Since he first graced a stage in January of 2007, Vincent has performed over 100 times including a very special benefit concert in Liberia, West Africa. Looking back, Vincent can see exactly how God has directed him. Through obedience and hard work Vincent hopes to touch lives and in turn glorify his Father in heaven as His Son.