After meeting failure in childhood, in marriage, and in his finances, Torrey Bates found himself starting fresh — again. And this time, he found that finding purpose for himself rather than stepping into a role someone else had for him was the ticket to finally breaking out of the cycle of failure.

Who is Torrey Bates? Torrey Bates is the founder of Innerman Academy, a ministry that empowers thousands of academically and socially-impaired boys and girls to become who they are meant to be despite the circumstances of their life so far. Torrey is an ordained minister and spent three years as a scholarship athlete for Carver College’s basketball team, where he also received his degree in Bible and Theology.

Torrey has coached at the college level, and spends his time today helping to develop programs across the country that focus on blending sports and academics to train up young people in a community setting that enables them to succeed while acknowledging that failure is part of the process.


“I felt like an adopted son that had come home for the first time.” — Torrey

“My whole life I had been chasing that thought: am I enough?” — Torrey

“Accountability is really, really important to you being successful.” — Torrey

“You must be willing to fail early and often to get to where you want to go.” — Torrey

“God’s plan is to use us and basketball to tell a story of redemption.” — Torrey

Action steps:

  • Letting failure impact your life can be hard direction to lean into, but it’s worth it.
  • A lot of people don’t want to enter into a relationship where you are honest with them. Be honest anyway.
  • We like to take our failures and reframe them so we still feel good about them. This self-deception does no one any good. Reality is your friend, and it allows God to turn anything around in your life for the better.
  • Community is necessary to accountability. But don’t be fooled by false community. Social media can be a pointless community if people only get to know a fake you. You can have a million followers and not a single friend.

Resources mentioned:

Ways to get involved:

We look forward to hearing from you!