Darious Williams

By Bob Cole


     Darious Williams absolutely, positively, emphatically did not like school. He wouldn't have professed that he hated school exactly—not Darious, because that's not the way his grandma had raised him. Those teachers who made the effort to get to know the gentle boy who inhabited the giant's body knew that Darious disliked school, but since Darious didn't cause problems they left him alone.
     Darious didn't dislike everything about high school; he liked playing football, and joking with his buddies at practice, and exercising strenuously in the weight room. He felt known and respected in this small part of the huge, turbulent universe that was Springfield High School. The coaches appreciated Darious because he played hard, worked hard, was respectful (his grandma's influence again), and helped the younger players learn the right way to do what needed doing. He was the same way in church (another thing that Grandma insisted on, every single week), where the little children worshipped him as a cheerful advocate and protector; even the pastor celebrated Southside Baptist's "Gentle Giant."