NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – As the Ole Miss Rebels football team pulled into Music City ahead of its matchup against Vanderbilt University, the team was greeted by a young fan from Nashville.
Javonte’ Hill, 9, didn’t have any reason to cheer for Ole Miss before two years ago.
Elizabeth White was Javonte’s second grade teacher at Kirkpatrick Elementary, and is the inspiration for his fandom.
“I always made college a really big deal in my classroom,” White said. “I wanted to make sure my students learned what college was and why it was super important to go to college. And I did that through teaching them about my alma mater, which is Ole Miss.”
College wasn’t always a reality for Javonte’.
He grew up in the Cayce Homes public housing in East Nashville, but for the last few years, his family has been homeless.
“So my door was decorated with Ole Miss. We would often watch YouTube videos of Ole Miss and we learned the fight song,” explained White. “I told them about what I studied when I was at Ole Miss and what I did when I was at Ole Miss. So Javonte’ kind of just fell in love with all things Ole Miss through that.”
The college’s athletic department heard about the young super fan and wanted to meet him.
Javonte’ was invited to have dinner with the coaches and players when they arrived in Nashville Friday night.
He was also invited to Saturday’s game, where he will take part in warm-ups before kickoff.
Javonte’s former teacher is hoping to turn that passion for college football into a passion for college.
“I really do truly believe. I know he’ll get there one day.”