Nathan Davenport was an offensive lineman last season. Now the Mark Twain senior takes over as the Tigers' starting quarterback.
Nathan Davenport calls its a fairytale.
And why not?
The Mark Twain football player served as a tight end and offensive lineman the past several seasons. Now the senior is primed to be the Tigers' starting quarterback for the 2018 campaign.
“It's definitely something special,” Davenport said. “For my first year being quarterback, it's just a whole new world out here, but it's a challenge I'm willing to take on.
“I'm looking forward to getting out there. I'm excited for it big-time.”
Davenport is well aware coach Karl Asbury prioritizes the run game. Mark Twain rushed for nearly 2,500 yards last year, led out of the backfield by emerging star Jace Barton.
Davenport looks to be a similar dual threat to graduated signal caller Lincoln Talbott, who last season threw for 745 yards and ran for 728.
“I'm not expecting to throw every play, but I'm ready to get some balls in the air and to run some too,” the senior said. “The offensive line we have this year should help us do that.”
There was a time when Davenport figured he might play quarterback for his whole high school career. As a freshman, he played under center at the junior varsity level.
But the team needed him elsewhere, and Davenport's size and athleticism prompted the switch to tight end and eventually guard.
“From my freshman year to now, I've definitely picked up a lot,” Davenport said. “I feel like I'm where I'm supposed to be for this year.”
Asbury expressed confidence that Davenport is his best choice to plug in as quarterback this season.
“Nathan went to guard last season and really helped us out there, but he is one of our fastest guys so we're going to try to utilize that,” the coach said. “The key to everything this year is how well and how quick he adapts to that new position.”
Davenport will also be a key on defense as a linebacker after making 52 tackles a season ago.
Mark Twain opens the season Saturday at home against Louisiana.