Sports Illustrated shares, “Five years after setting the Little League World Series ablaze, Mo’ne Davis is college-bound to play softball and chase her TV-host dreams.
On an unseasonably cool afternoon in mid-June, Mo’ne Davis strode into the student center on the harborside campus of Hampton University in south-east Virginia, nearly 300 miles from her home in Philadelphia. It had been a little less than five years since those weeks in August 2014 when Davis’s well-developed right arm grabbed the sporting world’s attention.
Pitching for the Taney Dragons in the Little League World Series, 13-year-old Mo’ne, only the fourth American girl to ever play in the tournament, threw two shutouts, paving the Dragons’ way to the semifinals. Her precocious, composed demeanor and dazzling performance landed her on the cover of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, on Jimmy Fallon’s couch, onstage at the ESPY Awards—all before she had started ninth grade.
Now, with all of high school complete and her first day of college less than three months away, she headed for the second floor of the student center, where a coach and two future teammates awaited to present the new spikes and uniforms Davis will be wearing for the next four years, at her new home, playing her new sport: softball.
The road that brought Davis to the Pirates’ incoming class was a winding one. Back in 2014 she said basketball was her best sport, and she wanted to play at UConn. But a junior-year ankle injury had back-burnered that plan. She played varsity baseball as a freshman at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy, the private school she attended in the Philly suburbs, but then gave it up for softball because she “was just wasting [her] time on the bench not doing anything.”