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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended April 23, 2000
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Sent on Mormon-News: 21Apr00

Summarized by Kent Larsen

LDS High School Student Called A 'Man For All Seasons'
Huntsville AL Times 19Apr00 S2
By Mike Easterling: Times Sports Staff

HUNTSVILLE, ALABAMA -- LDS High School student Ryan Davies says his days are "full and productive." Others might say he's busy. Davies, who is a junior at Bob Jones High School participates in six different sports at school, while managing to keep a 3.5 GPA.

"It's difficult trying to play four or five sports, especially with the overlapping of seasons,'' said Bobby Jackson, the athletic director at Bob Jones. "The time spent at practice and keeping grades up, that's tough. You're going to have to invest a lot of time, and I would imagine have some late nights. So far, Ryan's done a good job of it. He gives it everything he's got."

Ryan's mother, Natalie Davies, says she doesn't know where he gets all the energy to do so much, "I don't know,'' she said, "but he's always got plenty to spare."

Ryan's schedule starts with seminary at the LDS Chapel on Slaughter Road, where he goes after rising at 5 a.m. He then goes to school, attends practice for one sport or another or plays a game in a sport, works on his homework before going to be at 11 or 11:30 p.m. "I'm usually exhausted when I go to bed,'' he said. Then I get up and just start over."

Ryan credits his coaches for letting him play so many sports -- football, swimming, track, wrestling, cross country, soccer and weight lifting are all on his schedule. Ryan qualified for state as a cross country runner, and for the state swim meet as a member of the freestyle and medley relay teams. He went to the state wrestling tournament, finishing sixth in the 130 pound division. He ran a 4:45 mile in track, and has run the two-mile, but says he doesn't do well in that event.

And this spring the soccer team has reached the state playoffs with Ryan as a starting midfielder. The team is ranked eighth in the state, "We've done really well,'' Davies said. "I think we have a chance at getting to state, maybe winning state."

But the sport that worried his mother the most was football. "I had always wanted to play since I was real young,'' said the Utah-born Davies. "When I was teeny I said I was going to kick for Brigham Young." And it was as a kicker that he managed to talk his mother into letting him try out. But he soon moved up and now plays wide receiver and cornerback and starts on special teams.

So does all this athletic involvement get in the way of his grades? "Not really," says Ryan. "That's mom territory. She keeps me in line."

She may have to continue doing that for a while. Ryan is the oldest of four children. His younger brother, Josh, is a freshman at Bob Jones. He already plays all the same sports that Ryan does except for track.


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