A dozen tiny necks simultaneously bend backwards as a massive human being looms over them. An ominous duet of lumbering size-fifteen boots creak across the floor towards the waiting children. For a moment it seems this chiseled tower of a man may just body slam the whole classroom all at once, and then, just before their little hearts have sunken into despair, Asher Knight cracks the most disarmingly charming smile. It is the same smile that he can be seen wearing as he greets OVW fans before his wrestling matches at the Davis Arena, but on this night he has reserved it for a more important occasion.
"I was surprised, he was a lot taller than I thought!" exclaimed twelve-year-old Katie Heil.
Katie was one of several children at First Cumberland Presbyterian Church to have their Thursday night youth group taught by the former OVW Television Champion. Knight, who holds a Bachelor's degree in Christian Ministries, took time out of his busy schedule to share his testimony and a special message with the group. Eleven-year-old Caleb O'Meara, who is a huge wrestling fan, was especially impressed.
"It was awesome! I liked how he talked about jealousy and related it to wrestling."
Bray and Knight get ready for action.
Coincidentally, Knight and his tag-team partner Benjamin Bray may have recently had a run in with jealousy. The current OVW Southern Tag Team Champions, "The Elite," questioned the credentials of Knight and Bray when they requested a Championship match; this is remarkable due to how impressive the resumes of Knight and Bray actually are. Bray has twice been a tag team champion, while Knight held the aforementioned TV title and just completed a stint competing with the prestigious WWE organization. However the brevity of his TV title run still haunts Knight, who held it for only 4 days.
"I wish I could have held it longer, and unfortunately I never got a chance at a rematch because I went down to WWE after that," says Knight. "But there have been a lot of great wrestlers that have had short title runs and everyone still respects the fact that they won it. Frankly I take it personally when 'The Elite' say something like that. And I know Benny does too."
Knight feels that winning the OVW Southern Tag Team Championship would change that perception.
"Winning a title as prestigious as that would mean everything to me. It would prove to the OVW nation that I'm not just a one-hit-wonder. It would also return some much needed integrity to the titles."
Integrity is something that Knight certainly has no shortage of. Knight still appears humble as he stoops down to sign autographs for the children of First Cumberland, despite becoming a world-renowned professional wrestler.
"I just feel really fortunate to be in the position I am so that I can have a positive influence on young people. I want to show them that there is a right way to do things in their everyday lives and also when competing in the ring. It really bothers me that they have to turn on the TV and see the OVW Southern Tag Team Championships held by guys with such loose morals and a complete disrespect for the business. But they won't have to watch that disgrace much longer."
Knight and Bray haven't tagged together for long but they are surprisingly in tune with each other and are undefeated between the ropes. Adversely, the Tag Team Champions seem to be experiencing some miscommunication as of late. If that trend continues, it may just be the window of opportunity that Knight and Bray need to become the new OVW Southern Tag Team Champions!
Special thanks to First Cumberland Presbyterian Church who are located at 4610 Manslick Road in Louisville. Sunday morning services begin with Sunday School at 9:30 followed by an hour long worship service at 10:30. They offer Thursday night activities for all ages, beginning with an evening meal at 6:00.