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Damon Sims is a main character in "All American: Homecoming". He is portrayed by Peyton Alex Smith.

Damon is a nationally ranked high school baseball prodigy, originally from the south side of Chicago, but his family moved to an affluent neighborhood shortly after his Little League team was involved in a controversial national scandal. An experience that had more of a long term effect on him than he realized. Baseball, once his number one love, has now become like a job, in part due to his mother-turned-manager.

He is an MLB-caliber pitcher who gave up a shot at the MLB draft to instead enroll at Bringston and save their baseball program. Unfortunately, his skills are initially unmatched by his new teammates and he’s not afraid to let them know it. But underneath his confident and overly competitive exterior lies a fiercely loyal teammate. His determination to build upon Bringston’s baseball legacy is matched by his desire to find his birth parents who also have ties to Bringston University. But when the truth about his adoption comes out, he’ll need his Bringston family more than ever.

Biography

Damon was born to unknown Bringston University alumni and put up for adoption. He was adopted by a prestigious family that included his adoptive mother Keena Sims. Damon's talent for baseball was apparent from a young age, and he worked hard to secure a buy-in for the MLB after graduation. He decided not to go straight to the pros, but attend Bringston University to help save the struggling baseball program. The program had been rattled by a scandal, and part of Damon's deal to attend the university program was that Marcus Turner would be his coach.

Throughout All American

Throughout All American: Homecoming

In Atlanta, Georgia, Damon Sims does a press conference with his mother. She discusses him giving up the pros to save the HBCUs baseball program. She disagrees with his career change. He and his best friend Jessie Raymond go to the field to practice, and he makes JR go hard no matter what. Damon and JR go back to their dorm, where Damon doubles down on the pitcher and catcher being the heart of the team. They have to set the tone. JR knows it’s for the best after the scandal. JR knows the team will bounce back. Especially since they have Damon and Coach Turner in their corner. Damon isn’t sure the teammates will accept him, but JR suggests he change his tone instead of reminding everyone he gave up the pros for Bringston.

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At practice, Coach Turner gives a speech to the team, and they tease him for the long monologue. The team practices on the field. Damon continues to strike out the batters. Turner tells Damon to pull it back. When he doesn’t listen, Damon is pulled from the game. Damon tries to protest, but Turner tells him to shut up so he can run practice and find their weaknesses. Damon knows they’re all weak as the starters were suspended, and Santiago is too emotional. His speech is overheard by the team. Turner tells him to get off the field and into the dugout. Damon refuses as he didn’t give up the pros to sit in anyone’s dugout. He walks off the field despite Turner’s protests.

After practice, Damon visits Coach Turner's office, where he interrupts a meeting between him and Amara Patterson. Amara leaves to give them a chance to talk. Damon asks if Amara knows that Marcus was the anonymous source of the scandal, but Marcus changes the subject. He’s worried about the program being cut and learns that it’s true. He panics, but Turner tells him to be patient as their first scrimmage tomorrow will prove the foundation is there. If Damon walks out again, he’s off of the team.

A little while later, JR plays video games while Damon rants about Turner and how unfair the situation is. His enrollment in BU is contingent on Turner being his coach. JR thinks he should trust Turner. Damon accuses him of not knowing the severity of the situation, but JR counters as he’s well aware. JR is on a baseball scholarship, and the stakes are high for everyone, as they all have something to lose if the program gets cut. Damon should try thinking of someone else for once. He leaves to get the bonfire started.

Damon goes to the girls dormitory where Simone Hicks, wearing only a towel, runs into him - literally. He remarks soulfully on it being Simone Hicks. Coming around the corner, Keisha spots them and smirks at the situation. Damon goes to the bonfire where the Fraternity leader of Kappa Epsilon Kappa gives a welcome speech. He makes them repeat after him, “I am! Brilliant! I am! A leader! I am! Black excellence! We are…Bringston Lions”. Even Damon is lured into the power chant.

The students dance around the bonfire to the DJ’ed music. Damon talks to JR and apologizes to him. JR’s been a solid friend since they met on the 15U National Team, and he’s been an ass since his enrollment. JR agrees with the statement. Damon adds that all he knows is competitive baseball, the pressure to win, to get on the MLB’s radar, but he came to Bringston to be part of something real, something better. He just lost track of that for a bit. JR promises to keep him on track, as life is too short to beef with his brother. Damon sees Simone having a conversation with Cam Watkins, and believes the conversation isn't pleasant. Damon intervenes to tell her their song is playing and guides her away. Once out of earshot, she wonders if he’s high. He chuckles that he’s saving her.

The pair sits on a bench and Damon asks if she and Cam are friends. She says they’re acquaintances but appreciates his misplaced gesture. He promises to mind his business next time. He’s happy to see her at Bringston after all, but also notes she doesn’t seem too happy. She admits she’s homesick and he asks if she misses her husband, which she does then corrects that it’s back to boyfriend now. She appreciates him minding his business on that one. It’s not just that, she saw all the families moving in and it made her realize the complications with her mother. Damon can relate to that. She wants what the other students have - a parent to help them hang their curtains so they don’t have to figure out power drills themselves. He remarks that statement is oddly specific. He thinks families are highly overrated. She wonders who hurt him as a child. He states that it could be the parents who put him up for adoption as a baby or the mother who loves the baseball player more than the son. She apologizes and he remarks that it came out more depressing than he meant. Keisha intervenes to pull Simone out to dance. She invites Damon but he has to go but thinks she deserves a crazy, great night.

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At the scrimmage the next day, Leonard Shaw arrives and upsets the Lions. Marcus wonders if Hawkins knows the reason Shaw was fired - that he was behind the fake classes for his players. Shaw chuckles that he resigned and since there was no NCAA violation, Hawkins didn’t have a problem with how he runs his program or raises champions. He adds that Bringston baseball is nothing without him. He built the program and promises no one will forget that. He tells him to buckle up. With that, commences a not-so-friendly scrimmage game. Damon strikes out a Hawkins batter, but one player hits and gets to first base. Hawkins pitches and Bringston hits the ball, with their batter sliding into the first base a second too late. The second batter barely misses.

JR is up at the bat and misses his first throw. Shaw laughs that JR doesn’t want that smoke, and JR misses the second swing as Shawn continues to chastise him from across the field. Marcus cheers JR on. He hits the third swing but the catcher catches the ball and he’s out. Shaw tells Damon that if he decides to play with a program worth his time, to give him a call. Damon sits in the Turner's office deep in thought. Marcus joins him as it’s been a while since Damon’s lost like that. He doesn’t want a motivational speech and Marcus isn't giving one. Losing sucks and he knows why they were beaten out there - Hawkins weren’t better players, but beat them mentally. Coach Shaw psyched them out and now they have to pick up the team with fundamentals and patience. The game showed him that pushing them past the limitations includes using Damon’s drive to win. He thinks that they can get there together, but the team has to respect and trust Damon first. They shake hands as Damon admits he’s ready.

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That night, as everyone packs up Simone’s room, Damon, JR, and Cam arrive with power tools. Nate appreciates the image but wonders why they’re there. Damon admits they’re going to put up the curtain rods. Simone appreciates the sweet offer but she’s moving out so they are off the hook. Cam thanks her and gets ready to leave when Amara stops him as there is plenty of manual labor that needs to be done, and if they’re lucky, there’s a meal at the end of it. JR laughs that she had him at a meal. Damon and Simone exchange a smile.

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At Amara’s house, the group sits around the table and laughs over dinner. Cam thanks Amara for the meal, and she acknowledges that any friend of Simone is welcome anytime. Nate wonders if the food will be this good so they can make it a regular thing. Simone likes that idea - a family dinner once a week. Simone thanks everyone for not only helping her move but everything else they have done for her in their short time together. She wouldn’t have made it the past few days without them. Amara knows she would as she’s resilient. Keisha adds that the same goes for Ms. P, as everyone heard rumors about them cutting back on her classes.

This is news to Simone, but Amara assures everyone it’s okay. Keisha knows it’s not okay but as a people, they should be standing behind her for doing what’s right not tearing her down. Nate adds that everyone has her back - they aren’t going to let them take Amara from everyone. Amara doesn’t plan to let that happen either. She was rattled at first, but the youngins have inspired her. She plans to share her knowledge in any way that she can. She then has them help clean up the dinner.

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Damon tells Simone he was wrong for what he said before at the bonfire about family. JR overhears Damon talking about his adoption and how family comes in all forms. What she and her aunt have is special and she knows that. She gets up to help clear the table, and JR walks over, admitting he wasn't aware Damon was adopted. Damon reveals that his birth parents are Bringston alum, and that’s all he knows about them. He isn't interested in anything else either. JR looks serious as Damon walks away.[1]

In the days that come, students gather for class registration. Damon teases Simone for talking to herself, leading to witty banter between them. He encourages her to put last week's tennis mistake behind her. After registration, JR is at the diamond when Damon confronts him for being absent, so JR claims that being an only child made him appreciate his personal time. He asks Damon if he has siblings but he doesn’t. JR thinks that’s why he has trouble relating to the team. Damon knows he’s been hard on them lately, with JR calling that an understatement. The vote for team captain is that week and the team will vote for Damon. JR encourages him to find another way to bond with the team - and dial it back 25% as he’s a real pain in the ass. As the team drills, a group of players watches a video of the “new Damon Sims”. He’s a seventeen-year-old kid from Ohio named Emmitt Page. In the video, Emmitt doesn’t consider him the next anyone but will take his shot at the MLB if he can. Damon tries to brush it off but is upset by the remarks. He stays late and practices his pitches but can’t get his numbers above Emmitt’s.

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The next day in literature class, the Professor wants to expand their minds and discuss the most infamous books. He points out that, by large, only novels with white authors featuring white characters are considered to be classics. Their assignment is to find black stories and conduct a presentation. They will work in groups of three. Damon warns Simone that he’s competitive both in the class and on the field. Thea walks over as the trio is working together. She doesn’t care about either of them, only about getting an A. After class, Damon practices his pitches again but gets frustrated with his lack of speed. Marcus urges him to focus on bonding with the team instead. Damon needs to fix his arm but Marcus tells him the answer isn’t on the mound.

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The next day, Damon and JR walk the campus as Damon apologizes for being extra. He has to bond with the team and JR suggests something off the field. He finishes with JR and meets Simone, only to learn Thea has canceled. Thea went ahead and chose a book for them and assigned them parts to do. Damon is happy with the situation but Simone isn’t. Nate and Keisha arrive, believing they’ve taught her nothing. Simone was slammed on Yard Yack, a social media app. She turns to Damon for support but he has none, as he’s always dripped out. Keisha and Nate decide to help her.

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The next day at Keisha's house, Simone and Damon try to focus on their presentation. He praises her for having a job interview. His pitch has been way off lately. JR arrives with the baseball team, as parties are a great place to make an impression. Keisha accepts the party while Simone is not pleased. The party is off to a great start, but Damon’s socialization skills fail. The opposing team arrives to harass the baseball team for being trash. JR steps up and dares them to say something else, and they leave instead. They chastise Damon for not standing up for his team. In the hallway upstairs, Simone searches for Keisha but doesn’t find her. She learns the Queen of the Court is tomorrow, but her physical still isn’t done. She begins to have a panic attack when Damon finds her. He assures her that she has him. Zeke is scolding Keisha when Damon bursts in with Simone. They rally around her as Zeke explains that she’s having a panic attack. He tries to calm her breathing.

The next morning, Simone visits the wall of legends to find Zora Neale Hurston’s excerpt. Damon is also there, looking at a pro baseball pitcher Hank Dawson. He asks how she’s feeling, but she doesn’t know yet. She feels the pressure and he understands. He asks if a field will do instead of a court. They train together and he finally reaches 95 MPH while she gets her hits in. Simone's happy he has his groove back but knows it’s because Damon is having fun. He’s scared of carrying the entire team on his back. He struggles with uniting his team, but she encourages him to share his fears. To be a leader, he should be vulnerable and let others know that Damon Sims has fears. They both see traits in each other from Zora Neale Hurston’s characters. Simone figures out how to close their presentation tomorrow.

Simone, Damon, and Thea’s presentation goes well and the class claps for her. Damon praises her though Thea snips at her for going off-script. Professor Corte decides to go with Simone’s ideas, and Thea attempts to take credit but he cuts her off. Corte offers Simone a job working with the alumni office. Corte then asks Damon if Cam is okay as he wasn't in class. When class is dismissed, Damon proudly watches a live stream of Simone's tennis battle against Thea. Simone celebrates making the team with her friends and learns she’s being celebrated on Yard Yack. Nate praises her for getting everything she needed. Simone sets the table and confronts Damon for not talking to the team yet, as JR wouldn’t come if Damon did. She encourages him to face his fear and handle his business.

After dinner, Damon calls the team together under false pretenses so they would come. They go to leave, so he apologizes for being a lot lately. He admits the pressure is getting to him, and he worries about letting them down. Santiago points out that Damon is scared. JR thinks fear can be used as motivation if they do it together. Damon elects JR as being the team captain. JR is the kind of leader they need, including himself. The vote is unanimous, and JR accepts, so the boys praise him. They decide to play video games. The team plays video games when Marcus emerges. They quickly cover up the controllers. JR and Damon take responsibility for the antics. Marcus decided to play next. Damon tells Marcus he was right about being in his own head. Marcus knew he had to figure it out on his own, and he did. The team collectively plays video games.[2]

The baseball team loses another game by a run. Damon thinks it’s progress - they didn’t lose by a lot. Marcus tells them to keep their heads up as he’s proud of them for their hard work. JR tells Marcus they need to do something about the morale, and Marcus knows it will hurt a lot until they can do that. Damon and JR propose new equipment but the money isn’t there. Damon asks if individual sponsorships are available, but Marcus doesn’t want the boys to compete with one another. JR knows Damon is going to make some calls anyway. He’s just going to see if anyone is interested and will worry about Marcus later.

Damon tries to convince people to give endorsements with little progress. Simone notices he’s upset and he tells her about the sponsorship attempts. They either aren’t interested in HBCU sports or don’t want the scandal drama. She’s sure they’ll find something. He points out her new bag which she earned by running a mile under seven minutes. She has to get to the top six and starts to stress so she stops her. He takes her hands and makes her take a deep breath. He tells her to enjoy the moment. He tells her to focus on bonding with her teammates. She calls him out for being a bonding expert after a week.

Damon and JR try to earn money a different way when they notice a sponsor in the stands, courtesy of Damon’s mother, Keena, who just arrived. She points out that Damon could have asked her for help, but he didn’t think she would help. He doesn’t want her to steamroll as there are protocols as Marcus wouldn’t be cool about it. Marcus isn’t upset, and she intervenes to say Damon didn’t call her. President Allen already approved her offering her services and suggests he take his issues up with Allen. Keena talks to Damon and admits she’s proud of him. The other sponsors fell into place along with some press that will be there tomorrow. She knows a lot of attention will be there, and the perfect spot for players to pull in endorsements. Damon jogs onto the field and JR introduces himself to Keena. He asks about Damon’s scar and she admits he’s had it since he was a baby. When she leaves, JR looks at a photo of the baby picture he found and notices the fresh cut on the forehead.

Simone and Damon talk as they work, and he’s happy with his mom’s supportive attitude. He notices her disbelief but he’s sure Keena is okay with it. Their moms aren’t that different, as she and Tina are at odds because her mom refuses to accept her choices. He gets upset and tells her he wanted to her to listen, not criticize his mom. He packs up his things and leaves.

Damon thanks President Allen for approving Keena’s help despite Marcus not being okay with it. Allen asks JR for some privacy with Damon. Allen knows that Damon stepping into the role of a public star will bring in more money for the whole team. Damon points out that Keena is working on endorsements for everyone, it’s a team effort, not just him. Allen thinks he’s misunderstood and shows the logos that were created with his team number, which will bring in sponsorships for just him. The team readies for the sponsorships. Damon talks to Marcus in his office about the presentation, as it isn’t for the whole team. He admits that Allen confirmed it earlier. Marcus wishes he had listened as this will shatter team morale. Damon didn’t mean for this to happen as his mom lied to him. He doesn’t want the guys to be blindsided but can’t bring himself to do it. Marcus tells him to be honest and talk to his team.

Damon takes the stage in front of everyone. He invites the team up on the stage with him as he gives a speech about why he chose Bringston, its legacy, and the baseball team. Tonight isn’t about him but also his teammates. One by one, the teammates give speeches about their lives and what they represent. Marcus plays a video they put together of the team to sell everyone on their team. It is voiced over by JR’s speech to the students on bonfire night. Afterward, a man introduces himself and promises to be in touch as he was impressed. The team is elated to have landed one of the biggest sponsors. Damon admits they didn’t land the deal as someone promising to be in touch means they won’t be.

Marcus walks into the locker room with the boys. He has decided to send the video to local sponsors and several businesses want to sponsor several players. The team is elated and Marcus was inspired by the leadership and community he saw. Damon suggests using their individual endorsements to create a team fund and everyone agrees. After the event, Simone apologizes to Damon for projecting her issues, but he admits she doesn’t have to as she was right. He wanted to see the best but he can’t force it to be true. She suggests making things right before Keena leaves.

Back in his dorm room, Keena tells Damon that she’s impressed that he flipped the script on her, but he isn’t pleased. He doesn’t want a relationship where they have to fight each other over the business. She takes a moment then says she’s listening. He admits he loves her which is why he has to fire her as his unofficial manager. He’s an adult, in college, and his baseball career is his. He wants to build a relationship with just them without baseball or anything else. He needs his mother. She apologizes as the lines somehow got blurred. She admits that nothing makes her happier than being his mom. They hug one another.

At dinner with Amara, the teens talk happily. Simone notices JR looking at Damon and Marcus in an odd way. Damon is laughing and talking with Marcus and Amara. JR has to tell someone and pulls Simone aside, making her promise to keep things between them. She agrees and they talk in private. JR admits to thinking Damon is his biological brother. When he was a toddler he swore his parents had another baby, but one day, the baby was just gone. Everyone acted like it never happened, and he thought he’d made it all up until a few years ago when he found a picture of that baby in a bible his mom gave him. The baby looks a lot like Damon - right down to the scar. Simone is surprised and JR elaborates that both their birth parents to Bringston. Simone admits that Marcus and Amara went to Bringston and were a serious couple until something super personal came between them. JR doesn’t think that’s the case as they both could be jumping to conclusions. Simone counters that one of them could be right. JR sends Simone the baby photo he found.[3]

Personality

Damon is a dangerously charismatic and egotistical young man who is aware of his talent, prestige, and role in saving the baseball program at B.U. But underneath his confident and overly competitive exterior lies a fiercely loyal teammate.

Physical Appearance

Damon is a young adult with a tall stature and athletic build. He has dark brown eyes and short, slightly curled black hair. He has a faint scar on his forehead that he's had since he was a baby.

Appearances

Notes and Trivia

Gallery

References

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