Dajwon DeLoach: From troubled teen to collegiate athlete
COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Northside High School Senior Dajwon DeLoach committed to Jacksonville State University this week, but the path to get here wasn’t easy.
“A lot of teachers, when I was younger obviously told me you gone be in jail or you gone be in hell,” Dajwon DeLoach, who committed to Jacksonville State University said.
DeLoach got kicked out of a local high school following an altercation with his coach. Months later, he served time at the Youth Detention Center for a home invasion.
“I got sentenced to a year. So it’s kind of like at the end of my sentence. I gotta make something forward for my momma, my grandma, and my family,” DeLoach said.
Deloach had a low GPA when he got locked up. And while serving time he realized his life was headed in the wrong direction.
“What am I doing, what am I doing with myself? What can I do with myself? I just sat back and thought about where I wanna go and where I am now. And where I was I couldn’t be anybody,” DeLoach said.
After DeLoach got out, he was destined to turn his life around, focusing his attention back to the thing, he was good at, the game of football.
“Football was the big thing for him,” Leila Williams, DeLoach’s Grandmother said.
But bouncing back on the gridiron wasn’t a smooth transition.
“My first school was Spencer. They told me that a better place for me would be Northside and they took me in and accepted me as a family,” DeLoach said.
DeLoach began to grow as a player under Northside’s head football Coach Andrew Oropeza.
“I saw a young man that I knew was going to be a football player and was serious about football to a young man that was doing his part in the classroom holding himself to a standard from an academic standpoint and a behavioral standpoint,” Andrew Oropeza, Northside High School Head Football Coach said.
DeLoach then suffered a setback.
“When we first kinda crossed paths he was going through a knee injury at the time,” Trey Giles, TG-13 Sports Performance LLC. Owner said.
DeLoach tore his meniscus playing 7v7 prior to his senior year.
But after extensive rehab, and training sessions with his trainer, Trey Giles of TG-13 Sports Performance, DeLoach’s comeback was quicker than most anticipated.
“Just to be able to see him fight back through that adversity having to miss the first couple of games of his senior season. Then fighting back and getting into the season. And you know doing great things and now getting to sign with Jacksonville State,” Giles said.
DeLoach embodies the saying it takes a village.
“Like I tell him every day and all day. Keep God first and he will succeed in life,” Angela Jones, Dajwon’s Grandmother said.
“Dedicate yourself for greatness,” Dajonnia “DJ” DeLoach, Dajwon’s Father said.
“Keep going, take care of your responsibilities no matter what,” Elisha Brooks, Dajwon’s Big Brother said.
DeLoach has this message for other troubled youth.
Don’t worry about what people think about you. Be your own man or be your own young lady,” DeLoach said.
“Dajwon DeLoach is the number 34 Linebacker from Northside High School going to Jacksonville State. Go, Gamecocks Baby,” DJ DeLoach said.
Congratulations again to Dajwon. Good luck at the next level.
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