BY CHARLIE NICHOLS | Ball State Sports Link
Many athletes face adversity. The ones that rise up from the ashes of misfortune are the ones that are deemed remarkable.
Lincoln University transfer, Antwan Davis did just that.
Davis sat out the 2016 season as a redshirt due to transfer rules coming from Lincoln, located in Missouri.
He played in 11 games with six starts in 2017 and then, when he finally felt his chance had arrived, he suffered a broken foot in the 2018 season opener. The injury ended his year with the Cardinals.
After a season filled with disappointment and a battle with depression due to his injury, Davis took the time to strengthen his faith and remain positive.
Keeping his family as his motivation, he gave his all during the off season to get back on the field and leave his mark in 2019.
With his dedication off the field and in the weight room (he earned the 2018 Ball State Paul Schudel Strength and Conditioning Award), Davis is off to a fast start with three touchdowns and 222 total yards this season.
With his eyes always on the prize, ready to join together with his teammates to obliterate their opponents, what’s his game day play-by-play?
Here’s how Antwan Davis gets dialed in.
Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019:
The night before game day, Davis spends his evening studying his opponents strategies through film.
“You never want to stop preparing for a game until the very last minute before you play,” Davis said. “I like to go over what they’re running defensively and who I will be up against.”
After spending his evening studying the opposition, his eyes pop open bright and early at 7:30 a.m. He starts his day by drinking plenty of fluids such as Gatorade and water to stay hydrated for his big day. Davis also starts his day by reading his Bible.
“I start everyday by reading my Devotional Bible,” Davis said. “My goal is to pray and seek God first, so that my day can flow through smoothly.”
After Davis reads his Bible, he writes positive affirmations in his journal along with his goals for the game. He meditates to come to a calm state of mind.
Prior to departing, the team indulges in a pregame meal. Davis helps himself to a hearty plate of pasta with marinara sauce to receive all the fuel that he needs to tap into game mode.
After mentally preparing for Game 3 against Florida Atlantic, Davis loads onto the bus with his teammates and they head to Scheumann Stadium.
Heading to the locker room, nerves are almost nonexistent as Davis is focused, his game face on with his earbuds in listening to his favorite artists that include Drake and Polo G.
The locker room is a melting pot of emotions and actions. Many teammates are hyper and amped up for the game, while others like himself are in a calmer state of mind.
“The atmosphere in the locker room is like if you shake up a soda bottle,” Davis said. “The bottle is ready to burst, everyone is so anxious and excited to be able to get out there and play another game.”
Before the game begins, Davis has a tradition of reading his Athlete’s Prayer that a friend sent to him this season. He looks a picture of his grandmother whom passed away while he was in high school.
“I like to look at the picture of my grandma because it always reminds me that she is watching over me and it makes me want to make her proud when I go out on that field.”
As Davis and his teammates head to the field they embrace family along with the fans in the stands, but all he is thinking about is what he and his team can do to put themselves in the best position to win.
“Putting it all on the line for my team, no selfishness. I’m in here for the whole team. It’s not about myself, so whatever I can do whether it be blocking 50 times in the game or catch 20 passes all I care about is winning. I’m here to do anything to help the team win.”
After days of preparation for another Saturday game, Davis is filled with confidence, prayer and passion.
With his grandmother watching over him and his prayers running through his mind, Antwan Davis rises up from the ashes of injury and setbacks. He is now dialed in.