Tennessee state champs meet Albany movie makers - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Tennessee state champs meet Albany movie makers

December 20, 2006

Albany -- A Tennessee high school football state championship team traveled to Albany to meet the movie makers they say inspired them to win their title.

The Jackson Christian Eagles say the movie "Facing the Giants" helped them turn their season around and win their Tennessee private school state championship.

Wearing their game jerseys, the Jackson Christian Eagles from Jackson, Tennessee sat and shared their story with the actors and writers of "Facing the Giants." The Eagles rode a bus ten hours so they could meet the people behind the football movie made by Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany. Jackson Christian Defensive End Josh Aldridge said " It was so much like us. We said, hey this is us."

The real life Eagles season remarkably mirrors the movie's team. After Jackson Christian lost three of their first five games, the team went to see "Facing the Giants," and the movie's message turned their season around. Jackson Christian Wide Receiver Rashad Rayner said "so many things that happened to them happened to us. Them losing their first three games. We were two and three. Then we didn't know where our season was going, and turned it around after seeing the movie."

After seeing "Giants" Jackson Christian dedicated their season to glorifying God, and then went on to win ten games in a row, and capture the school's first ever football state championship. Jackson Christian Quarterback Clay Fowler said "What a movie! Our season and their season was just so alike. It touched us and kind of gave us hope, I guess."

The "Facing the Giants" actors say they have heard from several teams inspired by their movie, but this Jackson Christian team showed that faith in God can lead to miracles. Actor Tracy Goode said "it was awesome to watch the truths that they learned. It was awesome to see how they paralleled that with our movie. It was really cool." Actor Jason McCleod said "seeing stuff like this, and people living it out, it's a blessing. It really is."

"Facing the Giants" is still being shown on more than one hundred movie screens around the country. Wednesday the movie that cost about one hundred thousand dollars to make passed the ten million dollar mark in ticket sales.

It's inspiring story a big favorite for the Tennessee State Champion Jackson Christian Eagles.

 "Facing the Giants" producers say the D-V-D will go on sale January 30th, and already pre-sale orders for the Albany-made movie are among the top in the industry.    

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