Meet a Scientologist: Nick Ferguson
For Nick Ferguson, it all started in a park near the “projects” where he lived in Miami’s inner city. The recreational director at the park was named, simply, Motown. It was through this man that Nick Ferguson would have his first taste of the game of football—flag football in this case.
It eventually would lead Nick Ferguson to a successful 10-year career in the NFL.
Nick’s life before that in the projects was typically hardscrabble. One of five siblings, his mother had to work to support the family while his father, a longshoreman, was rarely present.
Like life in other inner city Miami families, there were almost no grown men among families. Nick watched the ideal American family on TV with both parents intact and involved, and wondered where he could find that kind of guidance in his world.
This translated into an aggressive attitude—the way he chose to deal with his frustration—and it came out to his tremendous advantage in football.
His frustration mounted because he was unable to play organized football in his neighborhood. His mother simply couldn’t afford the sign up and equipment payments. So Nick watched ... and learned.
When he did start to play, he learned quickly that his game would be on the defensive side of the ball. They delivered the blows, and Nick knew already he’d rather be the hammer than the nail.
During his time playing high school football, Nick began to think about taking his skills to college. But with no big school scholarships offered, he enrolled in tiny Morris Brown College.
After his successful freshman year, Nick set his eye on nearby Georgia Tech University, a true football powerhouse. After nearly being laughed off campus for being from Morris Brown, Nick dedicated himself to making an impression.
That summer, while he was home in Miami, his dedication paid off when a letter arrived from Georgia Tech. Nick didn’t immediately open it. Instead, he set it down and left it for two days. Finally giving in to learn his fate, Nick opened the letter and, for the first time in his life, accomplished something that he had really wanted. He was accepted to Georgia Tech.
Eager to tell his father, who he thought would be proud that Nick was the first in the family to go to college, he was severely disappointed. His father’s reaction was so negative that Nick cried that day.
But Nick used that during his years of playing the safety position at Georgia Tech and figured he’d proven himself to the point where the NFL would draft him. It didn’t, and Nick had to sign with the Canadian Football League to continue playing.
Despite distinguishing himself on the field in Canada, the NFL continued to balk. But maverick head coach Bill Parcells, then of the New York Jets, gave Nick Ferguson the shot he needed. He made the most of it during a game in which he intercepted a pass thrown by Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning.
"And after that game,” Nick recalls, “the people in New York City knew my name.”
One of those people, a beautiful lady he’d met at a large party, knew his name well enough to date and eventually marry Nick. And Glady Ferguson continues to be Nick’s biggest booster—on and off the gridiron.
After 10 seasons—a long career for an NFL player—Nick decided to stop playing and raise his family. But he couldn’t leave the game completely behind. He coaches youth football and occasionally appears as a broadcaster on NFL on TuneIn.
Looking back on his glorious ride he says that Scientology “has given me the ability to be at cause over my life and circumstances in my life, not allowing my environment to control me, but giving me the ability to walk into any environment and control that environment. Now that is a powerful thing.”