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Former Lions big man signs with Hampton

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By The Staff

During his time at Feather River Community College in California, Davion Wright quickly established himself as the big man on campus.Of course, Wright, at 330 pounds, would qualify as a big man on any campus.The former Lewisville standout recently signed with Hampton University in Virginia. He began classes in January and will compete for a starting spot on the Pirates’ offensive line this coming season.Two years ago, Wright was close to finishing high school and hoped for a chance to play college football. Lions coach Floyd Drum sent film to a number of schools and finally found a taker in the California mountains.“He could have said, ‘I’m not going that far,’ but he didn’t,” Drum said. “He was willing to do whatever it took.”So Wright made the cross-country trek to Feather River. The campus at Feather River is tiny (only 900 students) and very secluded, which suited Wright fine. The lack of distractions left him with little to do but study, work out and play football. There was an important adjustment to make, though, as coaches wanted Wright to play on the offensive line. He’d done that some in high school, but was known more for his defensive play.“They said I was pretty explosive off the ball,” Wright said. “They already had some recruits on the defensive line, so they asked me to switch.”Wright said he trusted his coaches, so he made the move. As a freshman he started 4 games and played in all but one. He started all 12 games as a sophomore and was an all-conference pick.Wright’s time in California allowed him to grow physically (the weight room and training table added about 50 pounds to his frame) and in other ways. His grades were good and he made friends. He worked for a while as a janitor at the school. His popularity was such that when he left his job and prepared to leave the school, fellow students threw him a party.He never felt too far from home, despite his distance from Chester. Almost half of Feather River’s players were from South Carolina, thanks in large part to one of the coaches having formerly coached in the state.He got one other surprise before he left, bigger than the party. A bear with the nasty habit of knocking over trash cans wandered onto campus.“I saw it after they killed it,” Wright said. “They had to get some kind of special permission to shoot it.”Wright’s stellar play at Feather River earned him attention from a number of schools. He was offered by Grambling, Arkansas-Pine Bluff and S.C. State. He visited Hampton and immediately fell in love with the campus.“It’s so big,” Wright said. “A lot bigger than what I was used to. They have a big center where students get together and listen to music. They have a DJ come in Monday, Tuesday and Friday.”Wright liked the players he met and had two fellow Feather River standouts also commit to Hampton. He enrolled in January. He now wakes up at 5 a.m. each day to run. He goes to class, then he hits the weights.Wright said he will have a chance to start at center this year. Drum said Hampton was obviously impressed with Wright’s size, strength, quickness and ability to sustain blocks, but noted that intangibles also played a big part in their offering him a full scholarship.“He’s never late,” Drum said. “He’s always on time. The other thing about Davion is that he hustles all the time. He never takes a play off. Davion loves everything about football, including practice and running.”Wright is majoring in computer science.His goal is to play in the NFL (he says he could have blocked any NFL lineman when he was in high school) and said Hampton had produced a number of pros in the past few years. If that doesn’t work out, Wright said he hopes to work with computers upon graduation.Drum said he was sure Wright, no matter what his future holds, will be a success. A big success.