# Mormon missionary, former Orem High basketball star showcases talent in viral video (+video)

• ssuzan Denton, TX
Sept. 20, 2013 11:46 a.m.

I think this is awesome, but I can't help but wonder where their nametags are?

• ed in atl Duluth, GA
Aug. 8, 2013 6:29 a.m.

Thanks Redheadedstranger for your comments. It brought tears to my eyes. I have 2 sons out serving and I know it brought tears to his parents eyes as well. Michigander we have the whole package! One day you realize it.

• Sheamus Salt Lake City, UT
Aug. 7, 2013 6:16 p.m.

This is nothing new. My companion and I would hoop it up 5 on 5 with the locals in our shirt and ties and vibram soled shoes back in the 80's in Brazil.

• vcsheffield Iowa City, IA
Aug. 7, 2013 11:16 a.m.

After reading Chris B's comment ("Dunking on an 8 foot hoop..."), I wondered whether the hoop is the regulation 10 feet, so I did a few calculations. In the video, the player with the light shorts goes up and touches the pole on two different occasions. This allows one to make some measurements and assess the relative height of the basket compared to this player. My calculations revealed that the basket is 9.91 feet high or about 9 feet 11 inches. The only assumptions made to come up with this height is that the player is 6 feet tall and he is standing on the ground level with the bottom of the pole (not standing in a hole or floating in the air). In order for Chris B to be correct that it is an 8 foot hoop, this player would have to be 4 feet 10 inches tall. Sorry Chris, wrong again.

• Michigander Westland, MI
Aug. 7, 2013 9:31 a.m.

The LDS hath basketball, but the complete truth ye have not.

• SyracuseCoug Syracuse, ut
Aug. 7, 2013 9:18 a.m.

I laugh every time I watch this video, I love it! Seriously people, it stinks knocking on doors all day, this kind of fellowshiping with the locals goes a long way in building relationships. We did all kinds of activites on my mission to engage people, we taught english, had ping-pong tournamnets, and even played the occasional hoops when a court or gym was available and I loved it. Times have changed, the daily grind of knocking on doors is slowly starting to fade as more effective methods of building friendships are being discovered in missionary work.....Thankfully.

Some people need to chill out.

• mhilton Lancaster, CA
Aug. 7, 2013 8:24 a.m.

@ Dennis,
What better way to build relationships with individuals than to play a friendly game of basketball? The way missionary work is done is changing. My friend told me he wouldn't discuss religion with two complete strangers, but would more likely to ask questions of those he's acquainted with and has a relationship with. So, if these men don't have LDS friends, why can't the missionaries become more of "friends" then by playing basketball with them? It's important for these young men and women to be seen as people and not as robots brainwashed from birth, to establish relationships with the people they desire to teach. In my mission, I was not allowed to wear a badge because of the country I was in. It helped me to develop friendships with others without the formal approach. It works, believe it or not, much better than knocking on doors.

• Jazzledazzle Provo, UT
Aug. 7, 2013 7:30 a.m.

@Brother Benjamin Franklin

I understand what you are saying about the mission being safer, consider this if you would:

Missionaries go voluntarily. They face the same risk at home of getting in a car accident, or getting injured. For the thousands that serve missions and the few incidents that actually take place, the mission field is pretty safe. I served a mission in Northern Brazil in dangerous areas and was highly respected by the natives.

You see breaking stories of missionaries when accidents happen because it is big news. All in all though, few accidents happen. Plus, if a missionary loses his life in the service of the Lord, I am sure he is in pretty good shape eternally speaking. I say that with all respect to those who have lost a missionary while in service. I lost a good friend while he was out serving and know what it is like to receive that news.

This is a cool video. People can see that missionaries are not robots, but they are fun people with personalities too.

• LittleStream Carson City, NV
Aug. 7, 2013 7:24 a.m.

It is always the biggest surprise when the elders and sisters show non members that they enjoy the same things they do. In addition to teaching my granddaughter lessons for baptism, they come over and help my daughter do lesson plans for nursery! The elders have never failed to show up and help me move! If is weren't for missionaries I would not be a member of the church today. Joined in 1964. Love the missionaries!

• Dennis Harwich, MA
Aug. 7, 2013 5:59 a.m.

I'm wondering why the elders aren't "working" instead of goofing around playing hoops?
Wish I had gone to that mission.

• Brother Benjamin Franklin Orem, UT
Aug. 7, 2013 3:08 a.m.

I think that your son is out of his mind for not honing his basketball talents in college right now and that he is risking his life every day to do this, but I respect that he is out there doing something he feels is right and trying to make the world a better place.

He is pretty good for not having played much, particularly in a shirt and tie. I will tell you this: he plays much better than I ever would in street clothes!

That being said, I think basketball is a bit overrated in the LDS Church as a fellowshipping tool. But if it helps bring people into living better lives, it can only help. After all, religions also use things like social events, outdoor activities, plays, and English classes to help too, right?

Good luck to these missionaries! They seem to be fine young men. Although I think the LDS Church ought to give consideration to calling missionaries to locations and missions where they can be safer, I commend these young men for what they are doing here.

• SoCalChris Riverside, CA
Aug. 7, 2013 12:31 a.m.

How can this video NOT bring a smile to your face. So good natured and fun.

I thought for sure even Chris B would enjoy this one.

• 44henry Lindon, , UT
Aug. 6, 2013 10:37 p.m.

• 44henry Lindon, , UT
Aug. 6, 2013 10:24 p.m.

• CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
Aug. 6, 2013 9:14 p.m.

Chris B - "Don't be surprised to see the SUU guy transfer to byu one day."

Thanks cb. U are right. It's a much better feeling wondering how many guys want to transfer to our program each year, than wondering how many guys will transfer out of your program each year.

• JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
Aug. 6, 2013 9:05 p.m.

Chris B, as a Ute fan I would kindly ask you to keep your BYU/Utah comments to a story actually relating to BYU/Utah.

As for the missionaries, I have to say that opening hearts of people to the Gospel in unique ways is very cool. I wish them the best and hope they can help others using their many talents. Good luck Elders.

• LivinLarge Bountiful, UT
Aug. 6, 2013 7:35 p.m.

Brings back great memories of my mission in Virginia when we would go to Quantico and play against the Marines on our prep days. Five of the six of us were better than average players and could 360 degree dunk. Three Elders were college basketball players. Suffice it to say we were undefeated. This really boosted our missionary work in a very favorable way.

• PG #1 FAN Lindon, UT
Aug. 6, 2013 6:19 p.m.

I coached Cole in baseball and he is a great kid. He will be a star wide receiver at SUU just like he was at Orem High At Orem High they measured his vertical jump at 38 inches. The kid is a beast. He is a great all around athlete and even a better kid. @Chris B. so sad that you have to criticize someone like Cole. He has more class and athletic talent then you could ever dream of having. Keep up the good work Cole, you are a great representative for our community.

• jeanie orem, UT
Aug. 6, 2013 5:56 p.m.

Too cool! Way to go Elders!

• Red Headed Stranger Billy Bobs, TX
Aug. 6, 2013 4:48 p.m.

Elder Payne is currently serving in my ward. On the first day that he transferred here to my ward he and his companion came over to my home. Within ten minutes of meeting me he was pulling weeds in my backyard. Humble is not a sufficient word to describe him. I didn't find out until today that he had a football scholarship and played on a state championship basketball team. As a ward missionary I have taught several discussions with him, and had several gospel discussions driving in the with Elder Payne and his companion. I stood in a priesthood circle with him to give blessings of comfort. His deep desire to learn is matched by the concern and love he shows to his investigators. I think he is actually embarrassed by what is going on.

He is a disciple of Christ and a wonderful asset to the church here in Texas. I hope his parents read this, because any parent should be proud of him, not because he is an athlete, but because of his willingness to work hard as a missionary.

Aug. 6, 2013 4:24 p.m.

Chris B:

These dudes would still beat your lowly Pac-11+U team.

• manute Tremonton, UT
Aug. 6, 2013 4:14 p.m.

Chris B
I am not the biggest BYU fan but when every post you make includes a BYU slam it make all ute fans seem like big cry baby's!!!!

• Texlaw Dallas, TX
Aug. 6, 2013 2:44 p.m.

What would have been even better than this video would be to have the Elders invite their mission president to play in the game. The president of the Dallas Texas Mission which includes Henderson is President Devin Durrant former BYU and pro basketball player. That would really have been awesome!

• Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
Aug. 6, 2013 2:33 p.m.

Dunking on an 8 foot hoop, these dudes have hops.

Don't be surprised to see the SUU guy transfer to byu one day.