Thanks to James Naismith, many young people were brought to Christ through the game of basketball.
Faced with a group of restless young men snowed in at the International Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts, physical education instructor James Naismith had to think of a new game to distract them from the cabin fever they were feeling.
With some added encouragement from his director, Naismith tested his ideas out for two weeks but nothing was working. Then on December 21, 1891 Naismith had a breaththrough.
“Something had to be done. One day I had an idea,” Naismith explained to a New York radio station. “I called the boys to the gym and divided them into two teams of nine and gave them an old soccer ball. I showed them two peach baskets I had nailed at each end of the gym, and I told them the idea was to throw the ball into the other team’s peach basket.” The game was called, “Basket Ball,” and the boys couldn’t get enough of it. They kept asking Naismith to let them play, but with the lack of any rules, brawls would break out on the floor.
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