Upward Unlimited / Upward Sports

The information on this page was last updated 1/17/2023. If you see errors or omissions, please email: [email protected]


Upward Sports helps church leaders leverage the power of sports to connect with families in their community. Our mission is promoting the discovery of Jesus through sports. For over two decades, we have been a partner to churches in leveraging the power of sports to achieve and increase the impact of their mission.

Contact information

Mailing address:
Upward Sports
198 White Star Pt
Spartanburg, SC 29301

Website: upward.org

Phone: 864-949-5701

Email: [email protected]

Organization details

EIN: 571031173

CEO/President: Kevin Drake

Chairman: Tully Brewer

Board size: 6

Founder: Caz McCaslin

Ruling year: 1997

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 09/30

Member of ECFA: Yes

Member of ECFA since: 2004


For over twenty years, our purpose has remained the same: to use the power of sports to share the gospel and promote the discovery of Jesus in every community.

Walking alongside churches in pursuing their mission, helping to overcome challenges and solve problems, and seeking to understand their unique circumstances and resources, we bring proven and innovative solutions to create transformational sports experiences.

We believe the local church plays a key role in building up and fostering their community. We support churches with strategic consulting, logistics, materials and spiritual support to do just that.

We view sport through the lens of a greater purpose - which means the impact can extend far beyond the game. Sports break down barriers and create a powerful catalyst for churches to build relationships and serve others.

All children deserve opportunities to be active, learn and have fun! That's why we value co-creating new and different play experiences with church partners to welcome and reach all children.

Based on Luke 2:52 "Jesus grew in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man." our experiences are designed to equip churches to engage the whole athlete - mind, body, spirit and soul.

Mission statement

Our Mission is promoting the discovery of Jesus through sports.

Statement of faith

We Believe...

The Bible to be the inspired, authoritative, Word of God.

That there is one God, eternally existent in three persons-the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

In the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father, and in His personal return in power and glory.

That for the salvation of lost and sinful people, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is absolutely essential.

In the present ministry of the Holy Spirit, by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life.

In the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; they that are saved unto the resurrection of life, and they that are lost unto the resurrection of eternal punishment.

In the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Donor confidence score

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Transparency grade


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Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Fellowship Evangelism

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating935 of 107728 of 31
Fund acquisition rating476 of 107815 of 31
Resource allocation rating918 of 107827 of 31
Asset utilization rating990 of 107727 of 31

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Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$8,376,844$8,162,620$7,949,770$9,334,610$6,994,545
Short-term investments$5,813,551$8,202,138$8,020,414$0$0
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$19,433,442$20,758,436$19,280,339$18,847,244$19,225,831
Long-term investments$424,559$425,499$425,499$425,499$425,499
Fixed assets$25,737,997$26,715,589$28,024,670$31,226,590$32,038,446
Other long-term assets$0$0$0$785,543$813,598
Total long-term assets$26,162,556$27,141,088$28,450,169$32,437,632$33,277,543
Total assets$45,595,998$47,899,524$47,730,508$51,284,876$52,503,374
Payables and accrued expenses$1,442,275$2,385,811$2,727,985$3,030,900$1,824,330
Other current liabilities$99,593$218,250$326,286$312,511$405,050
Total current liabilities$1,541,868$2,604,061$3,054,271$3,343,411$2,229,380
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$0$0$0
Other long-term liabilities$0$0$0$0$0
Total long-term liabilities$14,298,623$14,270,567$14,242,512$15,000,000$15,000,000
Total liabilities$15,840,491$16,874,628$17,296,783$18,343,411$17,229,380
Net assets20202019201820172016
Without donor restrictions$29,755,507$31,024,896$30,433,725$32,941,465$35,273,994
With donor restrictions$0$0$0$0$0
Net assets$29,755,507$31,024,896$30,433,725$32,941,465$35,273,994
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$81,746$90,914$896$1,070$243,911
Program service revenue$740,498$1,389,680$1,426,806$81,750$103,873
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$208,546$298,781($1,610,845)$20,047$14,758
Other revenue$8,978,798$11,513,925$13,859,582$16,583,747$17,890,440
Total other revenue$9,927,842$13,202,386$13,675,543$16,685,544$18,009,071
Total revenue$10,009,588$13,293,300$13,676,439$16,686,614$18,252,982
Program services$7,766,229$9,277,307$11,358,755$12,024,848$11,523,912
Management and general$3,331,411$3,348,678$4,701,992$4,094,958$4,985,976
Total expenses$11,097,640$12,625,985$16,060,747$16,119,806$16,509,888
Change in net assets20202019201820172016
Surplus (deficit)($1,088,052)$667,315($2,384,308)$566,808$1,743,094
Other changes in net assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total change in net assets($1,088,052)$667,315($2,384,308)$566,808$1,743,094


William PalmerExecutive Director (ended 05/20)$249,717
Terry SmithDir. of Corp. Dev. (ended 06/20)$195,755
Pamela WestbrooksDir. of Admin./Asst. Treas.$170,365
Nathan HolmDirector of Operations$161,718
Gregory McCaslinFormer President$132,965

Compensation data as of: 9/30/2020

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.

The information below was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 1/17/2023. To update the information below, please email: [email protected]


Founded in 1995 out of a church in Spartanburg, South Carolina, founder Caz McCaslin had a passion for sports and a deep desire to reach his community. He created a sports experience that met the unmet needs of children and their families, focused on the sports experience and sharing the love of Jesus Christ. This vision for one community quickly grew into a team of individuals committed to supporting churches everywhere to maximize their unique resources and personalities to serve and meet the needs of their communities.

Today, there are over 2,800 Upward sports experiences across the U.S. serving hundreds of thousands of young athletes playing basketball, soccer, cheerleading and flag football. What began as a local, recreational basketball league focused on reaching the surrounding community with the message of Jesus Christ has grown into a nationwide movement helping churches use sports to engage their local communities with the gospel.

Program accomplishments

In our history, we have been grateful for the impact that's been made...

5,000 church partners

7,000,000 & more children playing

45,000 sports experiences