Darren Davis (Founder)
Basketball has been an integral part of Darren’s life for more than two decades. With his father as his first coach, a path of success on the hardwood was destined from day one.
In 2012-2013, Davis was named Head Freshman Basketball Coach at Bishop Ireton High School in Alexandria, Virginia. In 2011, Darren earned his first championship as a coach with a U13 Division II Title, while also garnering ‘Coach of the Year’ from his peers.
As a promising athlete in Northern Virginia, Davis was fortunate to have been surrounded by several great coaches, including, but not limited to, Win Palmer, Jimmy Fitzpatrick and Brian Bobo; all from Flint Hill,Cliff Cooks and Shirvan Joseph from the Stars. The coaches from his past have shaped him into the coach he is today, not just as an athlete, but as a son, brother, coach, and member of his community.
Coach Davis graduated from Radford University in 2009. In 2005 he was one of the founding members of the Radford University Club Basketball team and also was a practice player for the Women’s Varsity Basketball team. Prior to attending Radford University, Davis played Varsity basketball at James Madison High School from 2003-2005 and was the starting point guard in 2004.
Taylor Davis (Founder)
Growing up with parents that encouraged him to work hard and always give back, Taylor Davis hasn't stopped working to better himself and others. As a youngster in Northern Virginia, Davis played for Win Palmer, Jimmy Fitzpatrick and Brian Bobo as a four year Varsity starter at Flint Hill. During his years at Flint Hill, Taylor also played for the Fairfax Stars AAU program.
Prior to playing for Flint Hill, Taylor honed his skills as a point guard by playing for Vienna Travel in 7th and 8th grade, a program for which he's now in his sixth year as a championship winning coach. Taylor is an avid believer in "practicing the way you play", which means everything he teaches is game relevant. Years of experience as a high level player and coach leave Taylor well qualified to take on the next generation of basketball players. His commitment to the game and teaching it the right way remains steadfast. As a coach, you'll never find him micromanaging his players or trying to control every aspect of the game; because at GameChangers, the results speak for themselves.
Coach Ryan French has been playing the game of basketball since the age of four. He idolized two men when it came to this particular sport; his father, who still holds multiple records at Bluefield State College, and, the greatest player of all time, Michael Jordan. Ryan, who would go on to eat, sleep, breathe, and do nothing else but always play basketball, grew up hearing that he would never be as good as his dad and he was too short to play. As a competitor, he took on the challenge of trying to beat anybody that ever crossed his path.
Ryan was able to learn the game from his father, whom he looked up to, and always tried to play against the best competition he could find. Not only did he study the likes of Michael Jordan, but he also took notice to a lot of other players, mainly defensive players. He was taught at an early age that everybody can score but not everybody can guard somebody, so he took a liking to Scottie Pippen, who he feels is the best defensive player to play the game. Because of his versatility and ability to guard all positions, Coach French has a special love for the defensive side of basketball.
In high school, Ryan was a three year varsity player, starting at point guard in two of those years. During the summer of his senior year, he was invited to play in the Barry Farms Goodman summer league, where he would play against some NBA players such as Steve Francis and Sherman Douglas. He was recruited and invited to walk on at University of Maryland, Boston College, and Delaware State University. Choosing Del State, he never played there, he transferred to Radford University earning his degree in teaching and coaching. He was one of the founding members of the Radford University Club Basketball team and was also a practice player for the Radford University women’s varsity team.
Currently, Coach French is in his fourth year coaching the U13 Vienna Division II team and in his third year coaching the AAU Game Changers U16 basketball team.
His accomplishments as a coach include winning the 2011 U13 Division II championship.
Coach Edwards brings a love of basketball to GameChangers that crosses over from his days of playing college basketball to his 9 years as a volunteer boys basketball coach with Fairfax County, VA McLean Select teams. Coach Edwards graduated from the University of South Carolina with a degree in political science and economics.
Coach Edwards' philosophy is to encourage players to develop a love of the game.
Basketball has been a passion for Stephen from the time he started practicing with his older brother’s teams when he was too young to play. From that time to this day Stephen has always had a love for the game that drives him to work on his craft so he help develop youth to reach their dreams. Being the younger of two boys his brother, Chris, has always pushed him and given him the fire to be better then he thought he could be.
Coach Fitz played varsity basketball at William Monroe High School, and has since returned to coaching at the high school level since 2008. He has worked his way up the ranks starting as a volunteer assistant to full-time assistant and JV head coach. Stephen has helped turned Monroe into one of the best public school programs in the central Virginia area helping lead them to a state semifinal appearance during the 2012-2013 season.
Stephen developed his real passion as a skill trainer in 2011 learning from some of the best skill trainers in the nation. Since then he has worked with kids from North Carolina to Northern Virginia on all levels ranging from youth players to college athletes. Stephen’s training follows the two principles of perfect footwork and the eight degrees of separation to make an all-around great player to help youth reach their dream of playing at the highest level of basketball.
“The separation of talent and skill is one of the greatest misunderstood concepts for people who are trying to excel, who have dreams, who want to do things. Talent you have naturally. Skill is only developed by hours and hours and hours of beating on your craft." - Will Smith”
Fred Cooke - Assistant Coach
Despite growing up with a love of basketball, Fred didn't begin playing organized ball until high school. He played four years for Einstein High School, in Kensington, MD, leading his team to the State Quarterfinals as a senior.
Fred went on to play college basketball at Shenandoah University in Winchester, VA. Cooke earned a starting role as a freshman due especially to his strong defense, energy, rebounding and athleticism. With tenuous work and dedication Coach Cooke developed his game becoming a better all-around player and relentless defender.
Next in his career, Coach Cooke spent a year playing for the Opel Skyliners B team in the German Bundesiliga League where he further developed as a player and enjoyed playing with team mates from around the world.
As a Coach, his focus will primarily be on defensive intensity and solid defensive fundamentals, along with working on polishing post players and post moves. Fred is entering his fourth year as a coach with the "GameChangers.”