Phoenix signal caller takes center stage

Phoenix signal caller takes center stage
March 31
14:22 2021

Over the years, Winston-Salem Preparatory Academy has built a reputation for having one of the best basketball programs in the city. After getting off to a 3-1 start to this season, starting quarterback Tim Davis wants to let everyone know the football team is ready to build a legacy of their own.

Davis, a junior, has been the starting quarterback for the Phoenix since he was a freshman. He and many of his teammates have gone through the growing pains of being young players and are set to challenge for a conference title and beyond.

“I was used to playing with people my age, so when I got to Prep, there was only a varsity team and when I found out I was starting, I knew I had to lead the team,” Davis said about starting as a freshman. “My first two years were odd because I came in young and was expected to lead everyone as soon as I came in.

“It just taught me a lot and now everyone around me has been around for those three years and we are on a roll right now.”

Prep got off to a great start to the season with three victories in a row. The Phoenix had blowout victories over Lexington High, Bartlett Yancey, and South Stokes. Prep is attempting to build off a promising 8-5 record last season and Davis feels they have the pieces in place to make that happen.

“I would say chemistry, because we only lost like two players from last season, so most of us came back for this year,” he said. “Last year we started off pretty good and our off-season is what helped us a lot. So, the chemistry carried over and we know that everybody wants it bad this year. Our seniors deserve it, especially since they have shortened the season, we have to go all out for them.”

Davis says there is a greater sense of urgency on their part because of the shortened season. With every game holding more weight, the margin for error is very slim.

“I think for our players it makes us go even harder, because we know it’s not much given this season and we are trying to make state’s and we have a point to prove,” Davis continued.  

Bringing home a state championship is one of the goals for the Phoenix this year, Davis said. He credits coach De’Ron Middleton for getting them prepared in the off-season for the tough task of attempting to win a state title.

“I believe we do, even with the short season, because coach Middleton stays on us about conditioning, because he knows how short we are with players,” said Davis. “He (Middleton) has gotten us ready and I believe we do have a long run in us.”

Davis is what many would call a dual threat quarterback, meaning he can throw well, but can run well also. He says Deshaun Watson has been one of his favorite quarterbacks to watch. He also has taken notes from Cam Newton in the way he plays the game.

With so many of his teammates returning from last season, Davis and several of his offensive weapons got together many times in the preseason to fine-tune their familiarity with one another in an effort to get better.

“I kept all of my receivers from last season and we would just go around and play seven on seven against other teams from around the city, from other high schools,” he said. “We just stayed with each other and worked.”

For Davis, he feels his leadership qualities must be present every game due to the number of young players on the Phoenix team. He knows he must work on his mechanics to get better at his craft. Davis feels he has to continue to be humble and always strive to become a better player, even though many have said he is one of the better quarterbacks in the city.

“I don’t really listen to it, because I don’t want it to make me feel any kind of way,” Davis said about not listening to the hype about him. “I know how people feel when they hear stuff like that, so I try to stay away from listening to stuff like that. And I know there are a lot of talented quarterbacks around our city, so I don’t want to knock them like that.”

Football is not only a passion for Davis, but also for many in his family. Growing up, he watched several of his uncles, cousins and brothers play the game, so it seemed like a rite of passage for him to do so as well.

“It’s always been a passion for me, it was almost like something I had to be a part of,” he said about playing football.

Davis did not always want to be a quarterback. As a young player, he wanted to be a receiver, but once his skills as a quarterback became evident, his future at the position was set.

“I have always been a quarterback, but it’s not the position I have always wanted to play though,” said Davis. “When I was younger, I always wanted to be a receiver, but since I was usually ahead of people my age, quarterback was the spot for me.”

As a three-year starter, the game has finally slowed down for Davis. He says working with Coach Middleton has really helped progress his game.

Being a part of the team that changes how people look at Prep’s football team gives Davis a lot of pride.  

“I believe as a school, it deserves it,” he said. “The school has a lot of good kids and Prep is a school that gets talked down on too much that doesn’t deserve it.”

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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