Teegan Davis was exposed to football at a very young age.
He remembers watching his father, Spencer, and uncle, Brian, win a championship in semi-pro football.
He grew up playing two-on-two football with his older brothers Drake, Wyatt and Cael and followed their careers.
“I got introduced to football real early in my life,” Davis said. “I’ve always been around it. I watched my dad play when I was younger and watched all my brothers play in high school.
“I always wanted to play in high school and be under the Friday night lights.”
After getting a taste of varsity during the COVID-19-shortened spring season, Davis stepped into the spotlight this fall as he took over as Princeton’s starting quarterback.
And the junior shined.
Davis threw for 1,839 yards and 19 touchdowns, while running for 1,099 yards and 18 TDs, as he helped the Tigers to a 10-2 record, a share of the Three Rivers Conference East Division title and a Class 3A quarterfinal berth.
For all he accomplished this season, Davis is the fall 2021 NewsTribune Offensive Football Player of the Year.
Davis follows in the footsteps of his oldest brother, Drake, who won the award as a junior quarterback at Bureau Valley in 2016.
“Obviously, Teegan is the leader of our offense,” Princeton coach Ryan Pearson said. “Each and every play goes through him. We put a lot on Teegan’s plate as far as what we expect him to do. Because of the skillset he possesses, we gave him a lot of reads this year. Those reads allowed him to use his athletic ability and ability to run when the defense presented the correct situation. For him to be able to handle quite a bit of that stuff as a junior is a testament to the type of player he is and what we think he could be with another year of high school under his belt.”
In part because of Davis being “a true dual threat quarterback” – along with more shifty running backs and athletic receivers – Pearson moved the Tigers to a spread offense this season.
“I’m not a guy who is going to fit a square peg into a round hole,” Pearson said. “We try to change each year based on what we feel would be best for the kids we have.
“When you’re in the I formation when you have a quarterback who has the athleticism Teegan does, I think it kind of wastes him a little bit. When you have a chance to put him in shotgun, some of the plays you were running from under center, now you can throw in specific read and add another element to that play the athletic quarterback can present.”
Davis, who played wide receiver in the spring, said the new scheme helped his transition to starting quarterback.
“I think it fits me really well,” Davis said. “It was a great way to bring me into the system this year.
“It gives me a chance to have the ball in my hands to run. It opened up holes for me to throw. He simplified it a little bit for this year, and that helped a lot.”
Davis displayed his dual-threat and big-play skills from the start.
In the opener against a ranked Rockridge team, Davis threw for 120 yards and a touchdown and ran for 223 yards – a top five rushing performance in PHS history – and three scores to lead the Tigers to a 48-7 victory.
Davis had six multi-TD passing games and threw for a score in 10 of 12 games while running for multiple TDs in seven games.
“I thought I had a pretty good season, but there are definitely things I can fix and do better for next year,” Davis said.
Pearson knows Davis will put the work in to make those improvements.
“I think the sky is the limit,” Pearson said. “Teegan works extremely hard. He’s going to come in bigger, faster and stronger. Being quarterback at the varsity level isn’t going to be new to him anymore. He knows what to expect. He’s a gamer. He’s going to be one of those kids we expect to take a leadership role in our program. If he’s willing to do that, I think everybody in our program is going to follow him.”