Allen returns home to host Buck Mission Day
By St. Clair Murraine
Outlook staff writer
During rehab from a knee injury in his sophomore year at Lincoln High School, Javorius “Buck” Allen found himself having a soul-searching conversations.
He eventually wanted answers to the questions that he had about life after football. Or even life without it as was the case while he was doing rehab.
He came to a conclusion that resulted in going to USC.
“You can’t play football forever,” said Allen, “but if you have that degree it’s something nobody can take away from you.”
He learned a lot at USC, where he played running back for the Trojans for four years. Allen, who spent his first four seasons in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens, will start his fifth season in the NFL this fall with New Orleans.
That’s Allen’s reality and he wants to help young people who live in his Miccosukee hometown get an understanding on things he didn’t know until he got the USC. On Saturday from 9:45 a.m. to 4 p.m. Allen will host Buck Mission Day.
Allen will bring with him several professionals in finance, nutrition and mental health. Some of the topics that will be covered in a workshop-like setting include “turning cents into dollars, and “understanding how I feel, act, and think.”
Admittedly, he could have returned home and put on a football camp, however, he figures a day of education on life is more important.
“I’m just doing something that I wish somebody had done for me when I was younger,” Allen said. “My ideas come from realizing the lack of knowledge when I was growing up.”
Allen was a multi-sport athlete at Lincoln, where he played on the varsity team as a freshman. He immediately began to show signs that he could have a career in the NFL.
“He brought a lot of tenacity as a freshman,” said Mark Wilson, Allen’s former Lincoln teammate and a best friend. “He was a great teammate and Javorius showed he could be a great leader.”
Wilson, who played college ball at Troy University, said he knew early that Allen was headed for success on and off the field. His “schoolboy” demeanor was the first signs, Wilson said.
Allen has had to explain a lot, especially how he got the nickname “Buck.” It’s because one of his coaches wanted to put an end to confusing Allen with another player named Jabari Little.
The day that assistant coach Tony Collins referred to Allen as “young buck” ended all the confusion. It’s the story that Allen tells and the same one that his Lincoln coach Yusuf Shahir tells.
Another story that Shakir will gladly tell is about the day that Allen took a blocked field goal and returned it for a touchdown to help the Trojans win the 2010 high school championship.
“He has always had the physical gifts,” Shakir said. “It wasn’t hard to see how gifted he was as an athlete.”
Shakir also gave credit to Allen for the mission he’s on to change lives.
“It’s not just for the boys out there,” Shakir said. “The young ladies can get something out of it, too. That just building his community.”