The renewal of the annual “Singing River Classic” takes place this week at War Memorial Stadium as the Panthers host the rival Gators.
The game has been chosen as the 228Sports “Kneed to See” Game of the Week sponsored by Bienville Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Center/Encore Rehab.
Pascagoula is off to its first 2-0 start in four years, with two straight road wins including a 34-7 thumping of East Central last week. Also, its the first time in a decade that the Panthers have won two consecutive road games to open the season after also doing so in 2013.
Meanwhile, the Gators glide a few miles east down U.S. Highway 90 coming off their first win of the season after a 41-20 swamping of visiting D’Iberville last week.
The game will feature the sports medicine staff from Bienville Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Center on both sidelines providing the best in athletic care to each team.
Pascagoula’s Certified Athletic Trainer is a veteran of Panther athletics as well. Joe Davis is a 1977 graduate of Pascagoula High School during a time when student/athletes from both cities attended the Pascagoula School System. He was also a student trainer for the 1976 State Championship Football team.
After graduating high school Davis enrolled at Tougaloo College. While at Tougaloo he continued to perform duties as a student athletic trainer for Tougaloo’s sports teams. It was during this time that Davis began to consider Athletic Training as a career.
After much research into the job as a career, and after graduating with a degree in Health and Physical Education, Davis enrolled at the United States Sports Academy in Mobile Ala. As a first-year graduate intern, he spent time at Lakeland College in Sheboygan, Wi., and with the Green Bay Packers. His second year of internship was spent at Mississippi Valley State University.
After completing course requirements at the Sports Academy, Davis accepted his first job assignment with the Academy and the United States Information Agency as an Athletic Training Specialist to provide athletic training services in several African countries preparing for the 1984 Olympics that took place in Los Angeles, California.
And after spending the next three years in Africa and Saudi Arabia Davis returned to Pascagoula where he accepted a position with Stickle Physical Therapy Clinic where his responsibilities at the time were to develop and provide athletic training services for the area high schools. While covering Pascagoula High School he was a part of the 1987 State Championship team as well as the 1991 championship at Moss Point High School.
In the summer of 1991, Davis received the call to become the Head Athletic Trainer at Tuskegee University. He spent the next seven years at Tuskegee before returning back to Pascagoula as the area Sports Medicine Coordinator for HealthSouth Rehabilitation Corporation.
Davis has since spent the past two decades as part of the Bienville Sports Medicine/Encore Rehab staff and is currently the athletic trainer responsible for sports medicine coverage for all athletes on the Pascagoula side of the Pascagoula-Gautier School District.