Oral Roberts University's Golden Eagles prepare to head into the men's basketball team's biggest game in 47 years tonight as the charismatic school, the tournament's No. 15 seed, meets No. 3 seed Arkansas in the NCAA's Sweet 16 tournament. Tipoff is set for 7:25 p.m. But head coach Paul Mills has no illusions about the importance of the game or the tournament, and he used a recent press conference to make the name above all names known. (Watch the entire press conference with ORU forward Kevin Obanor and Mills here; Mills' comments begin at 13:14.)
The Golden Eagles continue their sixth all-time appearance at the NCAAs and first since 2008, seeking to be the first-ever ORU team to advance to the Elite Eight. The miracle team has already blown past higher-seeds Ohio State (No. 2) and Florida (No. 7) in its March Madness path. The Golden Eagles and Razorbacks last met in December 2020 in an 87-76 Arkansas win; ORU is praying into its own victory tonight.
Mills, ahead of his first Sweet 16 experience as a head coach, told the press, "It's a blessing to coach those guys in that locker room; it's a blessing to win."
And Mills showed no hesitation in using the media spotlight to put the tournament—which has brought ORU national media attention as well as controversy—in perspective. He also took the opportunity to share the gospel. "We need to use our God-given abilities for God-given reasons. In a hundred years, none of us will be here. And what our guys need to understand is we're really not that important. And you need to know that," he said.
"One hundred twenty million people gather every Sunday and 180 million on Easter gather to celebrate one name, and that is the name of Jesus Christ. And to be at an institution that honors that—'There is no other name under heaven and earth which men must be saved'—to be at an institution that honors that, and we can give them something to celebrate. At the same time, we're not that important, and our guys need to understand that," Mills added. "By the same token, we are so thankful for the support and the people. But we want to do this the right way."
Mills also said that no matter what happens in a game, he encourages his players to "do the next right thing." No doubt, ORU team members and fans are praying for just that as they look toward tonight's game.
Follow breaking news like this and more in our new platform, CHARISMA PLUS.
To contact us or to submit an article, click here.
Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.
Five ways to deepen your relationship with God, increase your faith and save money!
- Deepen Your Relationship with God with a FREE eCourse: Click Here to view all of our free e-Courses. Favorite topics include Fear, Forgiveness, Holy Spirit, Supernatural, and How to Hear God.
- Super Discounts and Close-Out Specials: Click Here to view all our bundles and close-out specials and save up to 86%! Prayer, Holy Spirit, Anointing, the Supernatural and more.
- God Wants to Anoint Women Now: Rise up and enter the anointing of Deborah, Anna, Esther, Ruth and Hannah. You were called to go higher. Click Here to learn more.
- Change Your Atmosphere and Circumstances Through Prayer! John Eckhardt's prayer bundle gives you six powerful books to help you pray and change any situation. Click Here.
- HUGE Bible Sale!: Click Here to save up to 50% off a great selection of Bibles. Plus, get a free gift with each order!
Attention Pastors and Leaders: Leadership training and development are crucial for success. Enroll in a FREE 1-hour leadership mini-course by Dr. Mark Rutland. View Details