By Greg Ford
Devin Duvernay has received football scholarship offers from more than 35 major universities. After all, who wouldn’t want a swift and strong wide receiver capable of taking it the distance any time he touched the ball?
Well, now track coaches at those schools and elsewhere may also have an interest in the Sachse junior, as this past weekend Duvernay sped away from eight other competitors to win Class 6A state 100-meter race.
The junior, who was making his first trip to state, bolted to a 10.27 and first place at the University of Texas’ Mike Myers Stadium, with his next closest competitor being Plano East’s Chris Ntreh (10.40). In the process, Duvernay became Sachse’s first state champion in any sport.
“It was a special moment, no doubt,” said Sachse boys’ track coach Jeremy Colvert. “I was up in the stands with his brother (Donovan) watching it from the side angle. The best part about it was around 75 meters I said, ‘We got it,’ because from the side view he had a good sizeable lead. It was nice to see him all year long sticking with it and getting that 10.3 or better.”
Added Sachse boys’ athletic director Mark Behrens, “It was an exciting day. He is a quality young man, and I think the people down there were more excited than he was … He put in the hard work and it paid off … It was great for Sachse athletics and for the city of Sachse.”
Duvernay’s road to becoming the fastest man in Texas, has its roots back to his freshman year, when, as a ninth-grader, the young man established himself as one of the fleetest in North Texas. As a sophomore, Duvernay advanced to regionals, and this year entered state as the top seed following a first-place finish at the Region II meet in Waco.
“It hit me (Sunday) that I am the fastest person in Texas,” Duvernay said. “It’s something you work for, and it’s expected to happen. I’m glad it happened, and it’s overwhelming and exciting.”
Duvernay also anchored the seventh-place 400-meter relay team (41.38), which succumbed to a bad exchange during the race. His teammates were Nicholas Alexander, Christopher Hill and Malcolm Woods.
“My favorite part (Devin) all year is that I think he was more proud about the relay making it,” Colvert said. “Having some guys to go with him and enjoy it.”
Once that race was done, all that remained was the 100, a race Duvernay entered with some nerves, which were gone by the time he broke from the starting blocks.
“It was almost perfect from the time it started, to the middle of the race, to the time it finished,” Duvernay said. “I feel like I almost had a perfect race and everything went well.”
He added, “Probably about halfway through I realized I was in the lead by a good amount, and that I had it.”
Now, with the initial state title out of the way, the goal is to repeat, something Duvernay expects to attempt and accomplish.
“You’ve got to keep working hard and beat that 10.27,” the junior noted.