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Heisman help

Former standout quarterback Detmer speaks at church in Canyon Country

Posted: September 27, 2009 9:54 p.m.
Updated: September 28, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Former Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Ty Detmer speaks Sunday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Canyon Country. Detmer spoke about his experiences and integrity in sports.

 
Heisman Trophy winner and former NFL quarterback Ty Detmer learned one thing above all else during his time playing football.

“The biggest thing is believing in yourself,” Detmer said. “There are situations you get into that you can’t control. The naysayers are going to be there. You may not get to play, but you don’t want to wonder when you’re done if there’s anything you could have done differently.”

That was one of several messages Detmer imparted to the audience during a pair of speeches Sunday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Canyon Country.

The event was open to the public, but Detmer said his speeches were aimed more toward young athletes.

“It’s directed toward youth,” he said. “It’s about giving kids stories on doing the right things. You see a lot of negative articles these days.”

Off-field incidents have dominated the sports media landscape recently, many of which involve star NFL players.

Quarterback Michael Vick made his regular-season return Sunday with the Philadelphia Eagles after serving two years in prison for his involvement in a dog fighting ring.

Just 19 months removed from catching the game-winning touchdown in Super Bowl XLII, former Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress began a two-year prison term this past week on a weapons charge.

Stories like those, Detmer said, are what get the most attention.

“Everyone wants to break the latest news,” Detmer said. “A guy speaking at an elementary school isn’t the biggest news. I’m sure there are feel-good stories in each NFL city, but you don’t see it.”

After setting 59 NCAA records at Brigham Young University and winning the Heisman Trophy in 1990, Detmer was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1992 and spent 14 years in the NFL with six different teams.

One of those stops included a one-year stint with the San Francisco 49ers, where he backed up former BYU standout Steve Young.

Detmer spoke fondly of the experience.

“I got to see another side,” Detmer said. “I’d been with Brett Favre (in Green Bay), then Rodney Peete (in Philadelphia). In San Francisco, you have a quarterback that you knew was going to be a hall-of-famer, but he did his job like everybody else. It was great to see the contrasting styles in how each player prepared.”

Detmer now works for a financial services and investment firm called Triton Financial, LLC, based out of Austin, Texas.

He was invited to speak at the church three weeks ago by Dan Potter, a Canyon Country resident whose daughter-in-law is a friend of the Detmer family.

Detmer was introduced by former BYU teammate and current College of the Canyons head football coach Garrett Tujague.

“I thought it would be neat to tie (the speech) in with a community that’s so involved with its sports,” Detmer said.

While Detmer was excited about the event, he did say that Sunday’s speech would be it for the time being.

“I’m not looking to start a professional speaking tour, but I enjoy it,” he laughed.

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