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ProSource Teams Up With  Football Elite for Competition and Charity
Imagine hauling in a perfectly thrown spiral for a go-ahead touchdown from the likes of Super Bowl champs Kurt Warner or Brad Johnson. Or actually lining up against Anquan Boldin, Larry Fitzgerald, Ricky Proehl, Mark Rypien, Charlie Frye, Rudy Carpenter, or Torry Holt, while playing in the Arizona Cardinals state of the art facility. That's exactly what some of the guys at ProSource were up to during the annual Kurt Warner's Ultimate Football Experience. This celebrity-filled flag football tournament brought together 10 corporate sponsors from across America, March 7 and 8, to compete with the big boys for charity, competition and good clean fun.

NFL quarterback Brad Johnson unleashes pin-point pass to ProSource's Andrew Mandeville who slipped behind the defender.
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All the proceeds for this event went directly to the First Things First foundation, which is a public charity founded in 2001 by Kurt and Brenda Warner. Inspired by their personal, faith-based vision, devotion and generosity, this dynamic duo sponsors numerous programs that provide a wide array of community benefits, proving every day that actions speak louder than words.

Through First Things First, the Warner's have established an organization of charity and change that has literally helped thousands of underprivileged individuals rise above their limitations to rekindle their sense of faith, hope and family, while having a ton of fun in the process!

A major fund-raiser for the foundation, the Ultimate Football Experience combines the Warner's passionate sense of love and caring, with America's favorite game, by bringing other like-minded groups together for this action-packed event.

Like the other corporate sponsors of this amazing charity (Walmart, Insight, Arizona Cardinals, and others), ProSource's eight-member team of employees, friends and relatives banned together for the love of the game and helping others and headed down to Tempe to see how they'd stack up.

Before they took the field, each of the 10 teams drafted a participating current or former NFL star to serve as the quarterback for their team. The order of the draft was determined through a process based on competitive events the night before. Beyond the QB, the teams consisted primarily of the sponsor's employees or friends, while a couple teams seemed to have hedged their bets and recruited high level college athletes, which amped up the competition level even further.

Team ProSource entered the tourney as the only rookie team (and heavy underdog) but ended up surprising everyone with some top-notch play. The over-achieving ProSource roster consisted of company founder Bob Chinery, his son Robbie, Mike Goode (shipping foreman), John Tarzy, (transportation coordinator), and friends Derek Hughes, John Amenhauser, Chris Eshelman, and Andrew Mandeville. ProSource finished high in the draft competition and actually got their top choice Brad Johnson for QB.

The goal, of course, was to win as many games as possible in this two-day event, with the hopes of upsetting a top team or two on the way to winning it all. In other words, turning fantasy into reality.

The game got real rough and our guys just continued performing at a high level all day long
Even though the games were conducted in the spirit of giving and fun, make no mistake, it was still intense football played at a very physical level by accomplished athletes with a burning desire to win. In other words, the kind of highly competitive contests you'd expect when champions play the game.

Led by Brad Johnson and his super-accurate passing, Team ProSource surprised everyone by advancing to the semifinals, where they were narrowly defeated by a team stacked with elite NFL and college stars, including Anquan and his brother. In the process of attaining a very respectable record of 3 wins and 2 losses, ProSource beat some excellent teams along the way, including one that had earlier beaten a top-notch team consisting entirely of starting football players from Arizona State University. Their biggest achievement, however, was tying Kurt's team, sponsored by Joyce Meyers Ministries, in the final seconds of their game in the preliminary round, which went undefeated and won the tournament for the third time.

     Additional photos:

Mike Goode escapes defender while fighting for extra yards.
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Chris Eschelman turns it up field with a pivotal reception.
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Andrew Mandeville breaks free for a game-changing score
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Kurt had his team running like a well-oiled machine, with precise route running, pin-point passing and multiple defenses that dominated the competition. Despite it all, ProSource still played them tough the entire game, taking that powerful team to overtime with an exciting last-second score, but eventually lost the contest by 2 measly points. ProSource was the only squad that even came close to upsetting the champs. Although it was a gut-wrenching loss, the team came away knowing they have a real chance at winning the title next year.

"I would say that our team did as well as it did because our guys were well conditioned, strong, and had lots of endurance. We lacked the experience of playing in such a high-level organized event but our player's overall physical conditioning made up for it. The game got real rough and our guys just continued performing at a high level all day long. Plus, Brad's amazing accuracy made all the difference in the world. We simply could not have done as well without such a great QB at the helm," said Chinery. "More importantly, though, than the game itself, I can't say enough about how great each of these top stars treated us all. Kurt, Brenda, Brad, Mark, Torry, and all the guys couldn't have possibly been any friendlier or fun to hang out with. They really made the entire event an unforgettable experience for everyone there. They are true champions in every sense of the word."

Of course, ProSource was lucky to have Johnson behind center. Afterall, he's a longtime, highly accomplished NFL quarterback with a Super Bowl ring to prove it. But the fact that a bunch of regular guys playing as a team for the first time could not only compete with, but actually defeat some of these amazing athletes, who are at the top of their game, is truly a remarkable achievement. It says a lot about the value of staying in top physical condition and making the most of your opportunities.

Team ProSource already has their sights set on next year's tournament. ProSource transportation administrator, John Tarzy, says "Even though I dislocated my finger in the process, I wouldn't trade this experience for anything. Plus, this was our first year in the event and we came pretty close to beating the eventual champion. I can't wait until next year, because we're going to bring it, bigtime!"

John Amenhauser hauls in a key pass in traffic.
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Bob Chinery makes a key defensive stop by ripping the flag from a speedy receiver, preventing a go-ahead touchdown.
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Chinery says, "We definitely plan on continuing our support of First Things First, not just because it was such a fun event but because Kurt and Brenda and their staff do such wonderful things through the foundation. In particular, they personally host a group of special needs children on a Disney World vacation each year. Hearing Brenda tell stories about these trips and the impact they have on those precious children brought tears to the eyes of every guy on our team", says Chinery.

ProSource's longstanding connections with America's performance-driven athletes both professional and amateur and its own devotion to supporting charitable foundations made this event a natural fit.

In addition to being a corporate sponsor for First Things First, ProSource is also a major supporter of Oceans of Love (a New Jersey charity that helps kids with cancer), Smile Train, which provides surgery for kids in Third World countries that have cleft pallets and other facial deformities, as well as other local charities geared mostly to children. So when given the chance to contribute to this most worthy cause, while at the same time competing against such prolific athletes, it was just too good to, well, pass up!

"Lining up against some of the NFL's finest was both scary and very exciting. Hanging out with them a bit was even more fun. A great bunch of guys and incredible experience for me personally," said Mike Goode.

More About First Things First

The First Things First foundation is comprised of numerous charitable programs that cover a wide array of events and services. All of their projects are inspired by, and centered around the

Warner's fervent life theme of putting faith and family first. One of the things that sets their foundation apart from similar organizations is Kurt and Brenda are very hands-on and get personally involved with the programs and the people. For example, they team up every year with Walt Disney World, American Airlines, Dream Factory and Make-A-Wish Foundation to treat children with life-threatening illnesses and their families to a free, week-long vacation at Disney World. The Warner's not only co-sponsor this wonderful deed but also personally host the fun-filled trip, spending quality time all day long with both the children and their parents. The families even enjoy luxury accommodations at the non-profit fantasy resort called Give Kids the World, culminating in a poolside party and barbeque complete with Disney characters. You can imagine how wonderful these kids must feel to be treated in such a delightful and loving way.

Some of the Warner's other vital foundation projects include, The Ticket Program, where underprivileged youth receive free First Things First apparel and tickets to Cardinal's home games. Special Olympics PPK, which offers an opportunity for 50 Special Olympics athletes in Phoenix, St. Louis and Kurt's hometown of Cedar Rapids Iowa to learn the basics of football, enjoy meals together and share the day.

Another collaboration the Warner's are intimately involved with is Homes for the Holidays. Working with Aaron Rents, Inc and Homes for the Holidays founder Warrick Dunn, current running back for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, First Things First rewards single parents who have met certain qualifications such as taking classes in home ownership and finance, in addition to actually helping in the construction of the house. These lucky recipients are then awarded the down payment for the new home, furnishings and other amenities, making the dream of home ownership a reality for deserving single parents.

Behind Every Success is a Team Effort

In addition to all the generous corporate sponsors, a great deal of thanks should also go to the entire roster of current and former pros and college stars that played in, and contributed to this extraordinary event. They include, of course, Super Bowl champion quarterback and current Cardinal's starter Kurt Warner and his lovely wife Brenda, Head Coach of the Arizona Cardinals, Ken Whisenhunt, Cardinal's starting wide receivers Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin, St Louis Rams starting wide receiver Torry Holt, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Charlie Frye, Super Bowl Champion quarterback and current Dallas Cowboy Brad Johnson, two-time Super Bowl winning wide receiver Ricky Proehl, two-time Super Bowl champion quarterback Mark Rypien, and highly rated Arizona State University starting quarterback Rudy Carpenter. Without their valuable time and efforts, this would not have been possible so ProSource specifically would like to thank them for their generous participation in this exciting program of charity, fun and football!

Just stepping onto the same field with these great players is exciting enough but actually playing the game with and against them is the ultimate experience for any true football fan.

Said Chinery, "It was the thrill of a lifetime playing with these guys and catching touchdown passes from a Super Bowl champion quarterback like Brad. I was really proud of our team and how we performed against such incredible competition. And knowing that this great event is for such a worthy cause makes the entire enterprise that much more rewarding.

"Kurt and Brenda are to be highly commended for making it all happen. They're both great people with hearts of gold!"