Reidsville Rams track star Savion Thompson recently signed a letter of intent for a scholarship at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts following his high school graduation next spring.
A versatile athlete, Thompson has competed at the varsity level since his freshman year. He has thrived in both low and high hurdles, long jump, relays and the triple jump.
Former Rams head coach Charles Hill started working with Thompson in middle school, and he said his talent and potential was obvious from the start.
“Even when he was really young, he was real talented and had great speed. He’s just gifted compared to a lot of the boys in his class and he would always compete against older players. In ninth grade, we went to the indoor track meet and he qualified for state in his very first meet he ever did in high school and that’s not normal,” Hill said.
Thompson said the fact that Hill took interest in him at such a young age made a big difference in his development.
“He was a very good coach. He started off with me in seventh grade and on through high school. Even when he stopped coaching me, he continued to help me — sending me videos and also give me equipment that would help me. He encouraged me to try the long jump and stuff like that. Even when he didn’t coach me anymore, he directed me to someone that could,” Thomson said.
During his freshman year, he started off in the 4X2 relay and ended up placing fourth in both the indoor and outdoor at the NCHSAA state tournament. This past summer at a state-wide event in Durham, that attracted some of the top competitors in the state, he finished sixth in the long jump and was ranked in the top 20 at the AAU nationals.
Thompson was a Mid-State 2A All-Conference selection in each of his previous varsity seasons in both indoor and outdoor in addition to being named the 2018 indoor MVP for the league.
Hard work and dedication has definitely paid off and he said it all starts in the classroom. One of the top students in his class, Thompson has a 4.45 and he plans to major in health sciences and business administration with a minor in management.
“My mother has always told me academics comes first ever since I was in kindergarten. She always told me I wasn’t allowed to look at TV until I finish my homework and I’ve stuck with that my entire career. It’s really opened a lot of doors for me,” Thompson said.
He said competing in so many different events really pushes the limit, but it makes him a better-rounded athlete and gives him choices and opportunities at the next level.
“It’s definitely a challenge. Just having to give it your all in one event and then move on to something completely different, you just have to balance those things. Going into the hurdles, you have to have a constant rhythm and you have to push yourself. When you start off and you are behind, you have to push yourself even harder than what you think you can do. You just have to train to go out and win. Same thing with jumping — you can’t be afraid to go out and just attack the board and your competition.”
Northeastern first contacted him this past summer after seeing the times he was putting up at various events and he said after taking his official visit, it seemed like the perfect fit.
Northeastern team members and coaches told him how they were going to make him better, plus the school had everything he was looking for from an academic standpoint.
“I think it is awesome. For them to take a chance on a small town kid from Reidsville, you don’t think people know about you. You see people from a lot of different places because the stats, they tell the truth. The stats don’t lie in maxpreps or milesplit — it’s all right there and there are also videos out there of you competing. It’s really an honor to be able to able to go to such a prestigious school,” Thompson said.
He said he hopes to eventually get a masters degree in health care administration and work towards being an administrator at a hospital.
“I think it’s like 55 percent of people in that field receive a job right after they graduate and so I hope to be part of that 55 percent. For now, I just want to continue to grow. I just want to continue to progress in every event and cut my times down and increase my distances further,” said Thompson.