When Joel Davis woke up in early August and asked his mother, Lynne, if the doctor had called back with his test results, he knew what it meant as soon as she answered “Yes.”
“My arm's torn, isn't it,” Davis asked.
Lynne said it was and asked how he knew.
“You would've woken me up if it hadn't been,” Davis said.
Just two days before Davis was scheduled to start practice as Midwest City senior quarterback, his season was done in by a torn ulnar collateral ligament. He needed Tommy John surgery.
Now, around eight months after the surgery, Davis is back playing shortstop for the Bombers after starting the season as a designated hitter.
“I feel like my old self again,” Davis said.
It took awhile for him to get to that point — both physically and mentally.
The physical was the easy part, as his doctor, Kevin Hargrove, helped him get the surgery scheduled with renowned doctor James Andrews.
On his visit to Florida for the surgery, Davis met then-Red Sox outfielder Carl Crawford. Andrews performed the same operation on Crawford the same day he operated on Davis.
“Even though I wasn't a superstar like everybody else out there, I got treated with superstar hospitality,” Davis said.
The mental part of his recovery took quite a bit longer.
“It was probably one of the worst moments in my life,” Davis said. “I was going in to my senior year, my (baseball) recruiting was picking up big time and everything seemed good.”
After telling his football teammates that he wouldn't be able to play, his phone started lighting up with texts and calls of support.
But Davis had to turn the phone off.
“Bomber football is such a tradition and I felt like I'd let everyone down,” he said.
Davis especially credits three conversations with helping lift him out of his post-injury funk.
The first was with former Sooner Ryan Broyles, who had missed part of his senior season after a knee injury. Davis and Broyles traded messages on Twitter, with Broyles reassuring Davis that things would eventually be all right.
Another was with Bombers baseball assistant Shane Hawk, who had gone through three shoulder surgeries during his time in professional baseball.
Finally, Davis talked to his youth pastor at First Baptist Church in Midwest City, Jimmie Tribble.
“During the football season, I was really bitter,” Davis said. “And he told me, ‘You wouldn't have impacted as many people as you would have if you hadn't been hurt.'
“That helped me out a lot.”
The Bombers host Choctaw at 4:30 p.m. Monday, and Davis' recruiting is once again picking up as he's proven his health.
“I'm swinging it real well and seeing the ball great,” Davis said. “I couldn't be more blessed.”