LUDOWICI, Ga. (WSAV) – Most NFL players will tell you there’s a difference between dressing for their pro teams and dressing for their high schools.
Linebacker Jamin Davis may be a pro, a first-round pick who just completed his rookie year with the Washington Football Team, but there’s only one place he’s competed alongside his friends, in front of his family and against his neighboring towns.
That place would be Long County High School.
On Friday night, Long County showed Davis how much he meant to them, with a jersey retirement ceremony in his honor. No other Blue Tide footballer will ever wear number 25 again. It is the only jersey in Long County history to have been retired.
Although Davis graduated from Long County in 2017, he still carries a piece of Blue Tide on the field with him every week, sporting a team wristband with his Washington uniform.
The town of Ludowici still means everything to Davis.
“I can’t quite describe the feeling, it’s just one of those things that you work so hard and it feels good to know that someone is watching your accomplishments,” Davis said. “It’s just a really good feeling. No matter where you go in life, you can never forget where you came from. It’s something I’m always honored to do.
“No matter what is happening around me, whenever I get the chance, I always give back to [Long County.]”
Speaker after speaker spoke about Davis, from his former football coaches to members of the city council, who presented Davis with a key to the city.
All of the speakers spoke of Davis the football player, but they also praised Davis the person, noting his relentless work ethic and high character.
These speeches clearly left an impression on Davis.
“Honestly, I didn’t know what to expect and I didn’t even know what was going to happen, they didn’t tell me all that,” Davis said. “But it was truly a blessing to receive such an honor and I have people here who look up to me as a guy who does everything the right way. That’s what you want to be remembered for. I’m just going to do my best to always be looked at that way.
Davis said he hopes he isn’t the last Long County football player to retire his jersey. While it’s not every year that a first draft pick comes out of Ludowici, this year’s Blue Tide team did something even Davis didn’t when he was there: make the playoffs. of State.
The 2021 Blue Tide was the first team in school history to advance to the GHSA playoffs, finishing with a 5-6 record. They won as many games last season as in the previous five seasons combined.
Davis has been tracking the team’s progress, looking for scores Friday night and calling the team ahead of their playoff game.
Head coach Mike Pfiester said Long County athletes benefited from Davis’ message.
“It’s been huge for our guys,” Davis said. “I think the motto you saw on the video screen tonight; you can go anywhere from Ludowici. That’s the message for our guys is that no matter where you start it’s that work ethic that Jamin talked about and that’s the commitment every day to get a little bit better and obviously that’s the embodiment. So it’s huge for our children.
Davis just completed his rookie year with the Washington Football Team, playing 16 games and starting eight. He had 76 tackles, three tackles for loss and two quarterback hits.