Small Paul Quinn College no longer has a football team.

It has been seven years since the NAIA school shutdown operations after wallowing deep in financial debt.

Current President Michael Sorrell, a one-time college basketball player, made the tough decision to kill the football program to the dismay of the school’s alums.

He challenged them to raise $ 2 million to keep the program afloat. When the school failed to receive a single penny, Sorrell ended football at Paul Quinn.

“That showed me folks could be loud but that didn’t mean the support was deep,” Sorrell told ESPN. “And I don’t believe you build old man’s dreams on young man’s backs.”

Two years ago, with the football field still part of the school, Sorrell decided to use that valuable resource to create an organic farm.

“You know the Apple commercial ‘Here’s to the crazy ones?'” Sorrell says. “Well, that’s us. We’re proud to be the crazy ones. We weren’t supposed to make it. No one thought this would work. But here we are. And I’m telling you, we think — no, we know — this is only the beginning. We are going to change the world with this farm.”

They have.

Paul Quinn’s farm now readily supplies food for the surrounding community, including clients such as the Dallas Cowboys.

“I don’t think you should forget where you came from,” Sorrell says. “I don’t want people to lose sight that this was once a football field. That should give our students a message of resiliency, grit and determination.”


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