FEATURED ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Evan Davies, North Putnam
Evan Davies is a senior at North Putnam and plays baseball, basketball and football.
Banner Graphic: How important are sports in your life and what have you learned from them?
Evan Davies: “Sports are a big part of my life. They push you to excel in the classroom and to do everything you do with a purpose. The big thing for me with sports is family and teammates pushing you to do better. I have learned a lot of life lessons through sports, like when we lost a teammate last year. They can help you to overcome adversity and persevere, especially in that case. I think it brought us closer together, actually, even though it was a horrible tragedy. Some of that has carried over to this year.”
BG: Talk about each of your three sports.
ED: “I’ve played football since I was in first grade, basketball since I was in second grade and baseball since I was about four years old. For the longest time, I thought baseball was my favorite; but this year, it might be football.”
BG: Your role in football has greatly increased from last year to this year. Have you surprised yourself with how well you’ve played (more than 1,000 passing yards, nine touchdowns, seven rushing touchdowns)?
ED: “I have been pleasantly surprised at how well I have done in the quarterback role. I had some big shoes to fill, with Hayden Rudes having been a four-year starter. I just came in and did my job, and have tried to gain the approval of my teammates. I played receiver last year, and I was the JV quarterback for a while.”
BG: Does it help having played both receiver and quarterback?
ED: “That tremendously helps us in the passing game. I knew where I wanted the ball when I was a receiver, so that helps me at quarterback. That helps me to incorporate that.”
BG: How do your sports shape up this year?
ED: “I think we got a good sectional draw. It’s what we wanted. It’s kind of odd that we have to play Cloverdale two weeks in a row, but it’s all right. We can make it happen. In basketball, I think we’ll be all right with a few growing pains. I’m not sure about baseball. We have some good freshmen coming up. In football and baseball, they can just play. But in baseball, it’s the easiest sport to just go play but it’s the most mental sport. Baseball IQ is where they might struggle at first.”
BG: What do you do at school that is not sports-related?
ED: “I’m in National Honor Society, and we do a lot of community service. That’s a really good thing. We go help with food banks and we have a couple of blood drives. I’m also in SALT (Student Athlete Leadership Team). We talk about being leaders and help to get people interested in supporting athletics. Our student section is awesome, and our seniors do a good job of getting people to come out, dress up and have a good time. We have a huge cheer block, and that’s awesome.”
BG: I’m guessing you’re a good student. Is it hard to keep your grades up playing sports non-stop?
ED: “I have a 3.9 GPA. It was hardest last year, when I had four Advanced Placement classes. That was definitely difficult, but this year I have fewer tough classes so it’s more manageable.”
BG: What are your plans for after high school?
ED: “I am undecided. I want to study mechanical engineering. I have gone to Evansville, Purdue and Trine and looked at all of them. There are three guys from North Putnam who go to Trine, and they’re trying to get me to go up there. I didn’t think football was an option, and I was thinking about playing baseball, but football is not out of the question.”
BG: Besides having a strong throwing arm, you have had several long runs from scrimmage this year. Have those surprised you?
ED: “I thought I could run the ball, and that wouldn’t be my issue. I’ve always had strong legs, and my dad has always told me to build up my legs because I would need them. I have a strong arm from baseball, but I was worried about accuracy. That’s what we honed in on this summer. It’s been for the better.”
BG: What kinds of things do you like to do that are not school- or sports-related?
ED: “My friends and I like to go ride our four-wheelers and mess around. When I don’t have a lot of things to do, I like to find some motor projects to tinker with and try to figure out how they work. Maybe try to make them work better. I always liked Legos as a little kid, and that probably got me interested in engineering.”
BG: What are your favorites in movies, TV and music?
ED: “My favorite movies are the ‘Fast and the Furious’ series, and on TV I like police action shows like ‘Hawaii Five-0’ and ‘Blue Bloods’. I have also started watching ‘S.W.A.T.’ I like country music. I can relate to it, living out in the middle of nowhere, and I like listening to it in my truck with the windows down. Luke Combs is my favorite singer right now.”
BG: What is your greatest fear?
ED: “That I won’t amount to anything. I will go through life and at the end, look back and don’t think there is anything I can look back on that I accomplished.”
BG: What are your favorite and least favorite foods?
ED: “My favorites are macaroni and cheese and pizza. My least favorite is broccoli.”
BG: What is something you have never done before that you would like to do someday?
ED: “I would like to go to Germany. We had an exchange student last year from Germany, and he talked about how nice it was there. I would like to go there and see what it’s all about.”
BG: Summarize your whole North Putnam experience.
ED: “My parents are from Parke County. We built a house here, and I’ve gone to North Putnam my whole school career. They push you to do your best here. The administration is great. I wouldn’t trade it for the world. It’s a great place to be. I remember sitting in the locker room as a freshman and thinking the older guys were crazy talking about how fast it goes and not thinking it would, but it did.”’
BG: Do you see yourself coming back to North Putnam after you graduate?
ED: “Definitely. I have a sister who is a freshman now, and another who is in fifth grade. They are both very active in sports and I’ll definitely come back to watch them play as often as I can. They are both three-sport athletes.”
BG: After college, do you have desires to come back to Putnam County to live?
ED: “I have thought a little about that. I like it around here. All my family is from Parke County or Putnam County, and for me there’s not a big urge to leave. I’m not saying it wouldn’t be cool to go life on a beach for a little while. You can always come back home.”