Start of Something New-Durrell Givens

By | 6/04/2014 06:38:00 PM Leave a Comment

I want to start by apologizing for the long has been quite chaotic lately, however the blog will be picking up momentum again and come the end of July it will be back to full speed! So without further ado here is the first real blog in a while for y'all and I can't think of a better guy to start it back up with! 
Durrell came down with James Peterson (QB New Yorker Lions) this past weekend to help me celebrate my birthday....nothing else will be said about that! But I can tell you that Durrell is a class A guy. Glad to call him a friend and can't wait for the burgers and chili dogs in Braunschweig! See you soooooonnnn MONICA!

Enough from me..enjoy the read.

Check out Durrell's blog below:
Durrell's Blog

To the person reading this I just want to say thanks, your presence on my blog is greatly appreciated. For years I have started blogs just to see them sit dormant after a few weeks. It wasn't that I lacked content, I lacked commitment. I hope to change that with this blog.

If you don't know exactly who I am let me give you a little insight. My name is Durrell Anthony Givens, born and raised in Long Beach, California. I have two older brothers Donovan and Reggie who have taught me so much. I wouldn't trade them for anything. I'm the son of Guy and Deborah and they are the best parents in the world, that statement may be a little biased. They have showed me what true love is while molding me into a great young man. I have a big family and I want to say that I love them all, but I also have to take time and give my Grandma, Cleda, a personal shoutout for being so cool, yet so strict and helping me grow into the man that I have become even though there's still some growing to do. I have a dog named Kozi and she would make a great model/comedian. Had one before her named Kobe and he would have made a great serial killer, R.I.P. I love white chocolate and oatmeal raisin cookies, if you combine those I'll go crazy and turn into a new age cookie monster.

I can sum up why I'm starting this blog into three reasons:
1. I fancy myself as some sort of writer.
2. I have recently moved to Germany and I'm sure my family and friends as well as other people would like to see what I'm seeing and/or feel what I'm feeling.
3. Sue suggested I make one. She's a great friend of mine and has accomplished so much in her life that her suggestions are pretty much signs from above. I hope to be as accomplished as she is when it is all said and done.


How'd I end up in Germany you may wonder, well let me tell you. It all started when I was 9, the first time I played tackle football at Silverado Park in Long Beach, California (my mom was originally against the whole idea of me playing tackle football, she liked me on the basketball court and I was/am extremely good there too, I thank Coach Johnny for convincing her to let me play tackle football) . You may see this as a stretch, but everything happens for a reason and each step leads to the next, since I'm in Germany playing American football I see the first time I played American Football as being directly related. But without my philosophical ramblings here's how it happened.

I took a year and a half off after I graduated high school, I worked at McDonalds, a nursing home as a waiter, and at a Temp agency, not all at the same time. After that I decided to go back to school. I went to Chaffey Community College in Rancho Cucamonga, California for two years. Iowa State liked what I had accomplished at Chaffey so they offered me a scholarship. After a very successful collegiate career at Iowa State University I found myself preparing for Pro Day. I had sprained my ankle a few weeks before, but I was nearing 100 percent. There were talks about me being drafted from the so called experts, my friends and family were telling me I'll get drafted as well. I'm just trying to stay level-headed and make it through the process. During training I re-aggravated my ankle injury. I thought about sitting pro day out, but the competitor in me wouldn't allow it. Pro Day comes and I run a slow 40 as well as a slow 3 cone due to my sore ankle.

My agent, the scouts and myself were all dissatisfied with my results. Now the draft is here, still talks of me maybe being drafted despite my slow numbers. I get some calls during the draft saying "we might pick you." but none of them do. After the draft ends my family is disappointed and sad, they ask if I'm feeling the same way and I'm like "No, everything happens for a reason." After the draft I get a call from the Kansas City Chiefs and the Washington Redskins both inviting me to their 3 day Rookie Mini Camps, which is pretty much a tryout. I had fun at both places and made some great plays, but didn't get signed. I felt as if they brought me in as a just in case... just in case someone gets hurt, just in case someone isn't who they thought they were as a player. Nevertheless I had a great time and met some cool people, definitely an experience most people will never have. I'm thankful for that.

I arrive home and the disappointment of the people around me is still in the air, but not as thick. At least I had a shot somewhere and spent time around NFL legends. Thoughts of the Canadian Football League cross my mind, but I figured it'd be best if I got my ankle right. It was June, I decided I'd rest up while figuring out who I was as a person, football had been so much of my life that without it I felt incomplete. Some people have trouble coping with this feeling, but for me the transition was smooth.

I began writing more, which is probably my truest passion. I decided staying in shape is something any human should do so I maintained a pretty challenging workout schedule. I started to appreciate the small things even more than I previously did. Writing music, working on scripts, writing poetry and working on a novel kept me occupied in-between the workouts and parties.

Around September I decided I wanted to get my Masters In Teaching English, USC had an online program I had taking a liking to. Being a teacher of English has been a dream of mine for a longtime so when I felt that football wasn't working out it felt right to pursue this course of action. I began getting my recommendation letters ready, as well as answering the personal essay questions. Enrollment was in May so I had some time to kill. And then I got a message on Facebook from an Agent in Germany, telling me there was a team interested in me.

We began to talk and I was still in playing shape so I took this opportunity under heavy consideration. I did some research on the New Yorker Lions and began to like the idea even more. Once I talked to Coach Likins and Coach Tomlin I was pretty much sold on the idea of playing in Germany, I could always teach later.

As I'm talking to the Coaches and they're trying to figure out exactly what they want to do I began talking to an agent in the states. He wanted to represent me when I came out of college, but I decided to go a different route. There were arena league teams that wanted me to sign ASAP, like they were ready for me to sign that day. He also told me he had some Canadian Football League tryouts lined up for me. All of that sounded good, but I had grown fond of the New Yorker Lions organization and the idea of playing in Braunschweig, Germany.

My next conversation with the coaches involved me telling them about these other opportunities and that they were still at the top of my list, but if they were going to go in a different direction I may take advantage of theses options so I needed to know ASAP. A few days later the contract was in the mail and I was so excited.

Now I'm living in Germany and playing American Football, and I'm so happy I made this decision. I've been here for 3 months and I've had so many great experiences (soon to be written about). The hardest part was putting this much distance between my family and I, but life begins at the end of your comfort zone.

If you read this whole things I thank you once again, if you skipped down here thanks to you too. I wish I could tell you what to expect from this blog, but I'm not even sure yet. We'll find out together.

"Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us."


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