Originally posted on Fox Sports South  |  By STEVE EUBANKS  |  Last updated 10/31/13
BRASELTON, Ga. -- Natural athleticism is hard to miss. You can spot it in size the 6-foot-9 guy with a long, confident stride probably played something, somewhere and carriage, where broad shoulders and powerful legs stretching the seams of street clothes are an instant tell. Even at age 46, former NFL defensive back and MLB outfielder Brian Jordan, now a FOX Sports South baseball analyst, has that look. Jordan is part of a very small fraternity -- those who played both baseball and football at the highest level -- and walking across a parking lot in a pullover and slacks, he still looks like he could suit up in pads and make a couple of tackles or hit a fastball over the leftfield fence without breaking a sweat. What he can't do very well is hit a golf ball. But Jordan is not alone on that front. There are certain sports where professional-grade athleticism does not guarantee performance. That fact was blindingly evident on the driving range at the Chateau Elan Resort, where Jordan played host to a golf outing for the Brian Jordan Foundation. Stars like former Philadelphia 76er power forward Caldwell Jones, former Atlanta Falcon Dewey McClain, former Braves pitcher Greg McMichael and Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez joined Jordan and others for a fun day of golf and socializing ... with an emphasis on fun. Gonzalez hit a half-dozen wedge shots fat before giving up and chatting with the rest of the celebrities on the range, most of whom fared no better. Ex-Cardinals and Padres outfielder Ray Lankford hit a couple of low, stinging hooks with a driver, while former Braves catcher and current bullpen coach Eddie Perez had his issues with a slice. Of anyone in attendance, the best golfer was expectedly, Lacey Agnew, a former LPGA Tour player and standout on the women's team at Florida State. But golf didn't matter much. That was not what the event was about. "It's so wonderful to have so many people come out to support the foundation," Jordan said. "My mom was an educator who taught kids with special needs at my high school and growing up I saw how she poured her heart and soul into giving young kids hope. I knew that one day if I reached my goals that I would do whatever I could to give hope to kids as well." Through the Brian Jordan Foundation, Jordan provides scholarships to inner-city kids as well as outlets that support health and positive play. "As (the foundation) continued to grow, I opened up a health and fitness program for inner-city kids," he said. "We give them free baseball gloves and backpacks and teach them how to eat healthy and exercise. The next step in keeping kids confident and educated is to keep them healthy, encouraging them to get out and play more. With modern technology, kids don't want to get out and do anything and as a result, childhood obesity has become a huge problem." In addition to keeping kids healthy and active, Jordan hopes to keep them positive. He has written three children's books and is finishing a fourth, all of which preach the same message. "Kids are born into this world with unconditional love no matter what their circumstances," he said. "I want to let them know that, and know that no matter how tough they might have it, they can lift themselves up and make their lives better. I did it, and I want them to do it as well." Jordan wants kids to know that his journey from the rough streets of Baltimore to the pinnacle of professional sports wasn't easy. There were plenty of curves that could have derailed his career if he had let them. But the support of his mother and the passion she had for educating others set an example that Jordan now wants to carry forward. He has plenty of support on that front. "We're here to help Brian and his foundation, which does great work," Gonzalez said as he was preparing to head onto the course. As for his golf expectations, Gonzalez flashed a huge smile and looked at his shoes. "I don't know how we're going to play, but we're going to have fun," he said.
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