Spotlight

Drew Davis

Trust Spotlights

Drew Davis

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If you can imagine it, there is a possibility Drew Davis has studied it. The former NFL wide receiver went from being unsure of what career path to pursue after the League to diving into impressive career and academic opportunities. Just to name a few, Davis has earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Oregon, his Advanced Leadership Certificate from the University of California Los Angeles, his master’s degree in Sports Coaching and Psychology from the University of Denver, and his associate’s degree from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles—and he shows no signs of slowing down.

Originally from Denver, Colorado, Davis spent all weekend, every weekend, watching football, and by the age of eight, his parents knew he would thrive on the field. “By the time I played, I was already a big kid and pretty talented,” he laughed, “so my parents put me in there and that's all she wrote.”

By high school, Davis was an accomplished wide receiver (and a 4.0 student) at Montbello High School. He looked up to his favorite wide receivers, the likes of Terrell Owens and Randy Moss, and tried to model his game after them.

His inherent love for the game was apparent to everyone around him. “Football became really important when I figured out I really liked it,” he recalled. “The coaches would kind of shower me with a little bit of love and say, ‘Hey, you know, you're pretty good.’” And whenever the ball was given to him on fourth down, Davis could feel his coaches and teammates pouring into him and his potential.

Drew Davis vs GreenBay Packers

After graduating, Davis found himself “bleeding green” at the University of Oregon, a place he felt drawn to from his first visit. “It was just a really good family environment when I took my trip out there,” he said, “I just got a real good feeling in the pit of my stomach that this is a place that I could spend three or four years.”

Little did he know just how successful his four years at Oregon would be. From playing in the Sun Bowl his first year to competing against Auburn in the BCS National Championship his final year, Davis still has an immense amount of pride for his alma mater and his teammates there.

When Davis was leaving college, he found himself fighting for a League roster spot amid the 2011 NFL lockout. During that period of unknown, Davis said he started working at DirectTV while he waited to hear about football. Eventually, however, his dream of playing in the League came true. “It was definitely one of those surreal moments when everything came together and aligned in such a wacky way,” he said.

When he joined the League, Davis couldn’t help but look around and realize he was surrounded by the best college football players in the country—and that he had the honor and work ethic to be considered one of them.

An even more dream-like scenario for Davis was his first NFL touchdown—which just happened to be his second NFL career catch ever. “That doesn't happen very often,” he laughed, and what made that moment so special for Davis was the outpouring of support he received. “When you have so many people giving you that positive reinforcement, who are just generally happy for you in what you're doing and to be able to see you catch a touchdown on TV, it just seemed like a movie moment,” he said.

After four years with the Atlanta Falcons, Davis started to look towards opportunities off the field. “The transition out of the NFL was a little bit weird,” he said, “I had an injury my last year, so I was trying to get healthy to return to play for another team, but my body just didn't feel quite right.” When he finally decided to leave the League, he said it was “definitely a wakeup call,” but one that was also exhilarating for him—he could pursue untapped opportunities.

It was a lot of trial and error with jobs, careers, and organizations that I thought might be a good fit for a lot of my morals and scruples—and from there it was just kind of figuring out what that next step was in life.

Davis first heard about The Trust after leaving the League and was immediately interested in The Trust Scholarship. The Scholarship is set up for eligible Former Players to receive up to $20,000 per calendar year for those looking to obtain undergraduate and graduate degrees, and up to $5,000 a calendar year for vocational institutions, technical programs, and professional licensing programs.

Knowing that The Trust offered an opportunity for continued education support, Davis successfully applied and received the Scholarship and started his impressive academic journey. “To be honest with you, it has been such a seamless process,” he said.

With part of the financial burden of school alleviated, Davis said he could finally dream of getting his master’s, pursuing a doctorate, and even getting certified in careers he felt passionate about. The Trust’s support has allowed Davis some freedom to really explore what he wants to study and where. “If you're thinking about going back to school, you know, the money's there for you to do it. You just need to have a plan to be able to get it done,” he said

I tell former teammates that I have— who might be struggling to find out what else they want to do or thinking about going back to school but the money issue is a problem—I've turned them right over to The Trust.

Today, Davis is a life and performance coach who is set on helping others. He regularly works one-on-one with clients and athletes, as well as working alongside universities and organizations to help everyone reach their highest potential. His overarching goal is to be able to help others like him. “For me, one major thing that I've always wanted to do is help people and a lot of that has to do with helping athletes as well—in college, in high school, in the NFL,” Davis said.

“My end goal is to be a psychologist— a sports psychologist—because I know that it's a major need out here in the world,” he said, and “I know there aren't very many African American psychologists out there as well, so being able to get help from somebody who looks like you, somebody who's played collegiately and professionally,” would really help some people struggling.

Davis is thankful for The Trust’s support and hopes to inspire fellow Former Players in their season of life off the field.

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