LOS ANGELES — Over 15 years ago, Trimaine Davis was on the court with the San Diego State basketball team. Although he never made the big stage as an athlete, on Sunday he will be on the largest sports stage in America, as an honorary captain at the Super Bowl, as a champion of education.
“I’m still trying to wrap my mind around it. It’s so amazing,” Davis said.
He’s the UCLA retention coordinator for the VIP Scholars Program. Thanks in large part to his work, many students were able to get wireless internet, laptops, and tablets, so they could engage in virtual learning. It’s just part of his mentorship with youth, even before the COVID-19 outbreak.
“I couldn’t even imagine us not being there, not being able to talk about real things that are going on, not being able to give our resources or help students find resources, not showing up, and showing consistently every day, that we care about them.”
Davis’s student engagement is the reason he is one of three community heroes chosen to be on the field as captains before Sunday’s big game. Though, he won’t be the only Angeleno featured. Nationwide sensation and local poet, Amanda Gorman will perform as part of pre-game program.
This follows the 2020 Super Bowl when SoCal kid, Bunchie Young was chosen to bring the game ball onto the field. It's the second year in a row, the Super Bowl spotlight has shined on L.A.
“I hope the folks that represents those communities feel a sense of empowerment,” Davis said.
“We’re talking about South L.A., we’re talking about Leimert Park, we’re talking about View Park, Windsor Hills,” Davis said.
Once all the glitz of the Super Bowl goes away, Davis will still work to be an example.
“Because without everyday folk, where would we be?" he said.
On Sunday, Davis will be in Tampa representing his city and the importance of education. He will be taking part in the pre-game coin toss.