Love of the Game

Deveron McKelvey

Deveron McKelvey

Baseball was pretty much Deveron McKelvey’s life before he came to Wayland, and he wanted that life to continue.

“From high school, I wanted to play college baseball; that was my dream. Coach (Brad) Bass gave me a scholarship just three days before school started. I moved into the dorms on the day classes started my freshman year,” he recalls.
A native of nearby Littlefield, Deveron had never heard of Wayland until he signed up for the All American tryouts, which were being held on Wayland’s Wilder Field. Encouraged by the closeness to his home and family, he signed on to become a Pioneer.

Settling in at home

Though he admits to being nervous about college life, Deveron eventually got into the hang of his new home, making friends and getting a campus job that helped him become independent away from his family. Drawing from his rehab experience after a senior year football injury, he chose sports medicine as a career and exercise and sports science as a major. He’s also studied personal training, an area he never realized he’d enjoy as much.

Ironically, the game he always lived and breathed would change him greatly once he got to Wayland.

“When I came here I was used to being coached to specific things, and I’ve always been so hard on myself and critical because of the way I’ve been coached my whole life,” says the senior infielder. “Here, they focused on just playing and letting God handle the rest. Everything will take care of itself if you work hard and are doing what you’re supposed to be doing; just play for the love of the game and for God. I tried to implement that more and, as I did, I noticed that I got better.  It helped me really connect with baseball on a different level.”

Renewed faith

Deveron also grew in his faith while at Wayland, citing the influence of believers across the WBU faculty, staff and student body on his time here. He was baptized in the fall of his senior year and sees his walk with God as much more personal.
As the first of 11 children to attend college, Deveron says one of the greatest things he’s taking with him at graduation is confidence. Getting involved in campus activities and working has helped break him out of his shell and learn to be self-sufficient. He’s already planning on a master’s degree, which he previously never considered. All in all, he knows God put him in the right place.

“I never thought I would not go to college, but this place definitely found me,” he says. “I’m thankful for the education I got here at Wayland and I want to continue. I’m intrigued and want to learn more; there’s more I want to accomplish and prove even to myself.”