They went to rival schools so they wouldn’t have to compete against each other at quarterback.
Davis Chauhan went to Scottsdale Chaparral, and his twin brother, Anthony, to Scottsdale Desert Mountain.
The seniors played backup roles — until Davis Chauhan got his first break on Friday.
Chaparral thrust Davis into the starting role two days after sophomore sensation Jack Miller, the No. 1-rated quarterback in the 2020 class in the nation by 247 Sports, was denied hardship by the Arizona Interscholastic Association.
While Miller’s father retained an attorney to fight his son’s appeal on Aug. 29 with the AIA Executive Board, Davis, who started spring ball as third string, was given the keys to the offense.
With Anthony on the opposing sideline, Davis played the game of his life in a 28-27 loss at Desert Mountain. He completed 16 of 20 passes for 345 yards and four touchdowns with one interception.
Had it not been for a roughing-the-passer penalty as time expired, Chaparral would have won. But the 105-yard interception return for a Chaparral touchdown was called back, and junior QB Kedon Slovis, on an untimed play, found Max Walker in the end zone from 15 yards out for the win.
Watching all of this unfold was the nation’s most famous former grocery store stock guy, Desert Mountain offensive coordinator Kurt Warner, the recently inducted Pro Football Hall of Famer, who enjoys a good rags-to-riches, staying patient story.
“Me watching my brother play makes me feel proud,” said Anthony, who gives credit to their father, Suhas Chauhan, for keeping him and his brother motivated. “He has done so much to get his chance and he finally got it. He played better than I’ve ever seen him play in his life.
“It was emotional talking to him at the end of the game. He came over to me. I was just very proud of his performance. All of the time, hard work and effort he had put in paid off. He inspired me because he never gave up and kept working.”
If Chauhan can put up another good game Friday against Phoenix Horizon at Phoenix Arcadia, it will make it easier for Chaparral to wait the five games until Miller is cleared to play.
Because of his transfer from Scottsdale Christian Academy, Miller has to sit out the first half of the season. The family felt Miller had a strong hardship case after a close family friend was struck by a car and killed crossing the street to see Miller play in a game last season, traumatizing Miller.
Davis Chauhan moved up to second team in the summer after the backup to Miller moved to California, Chaparral coach Thomas Lewis said.
“He did a phenomenal job,” Lewis said of Chauhan. “He has good receivers who can stretch the field.”
Davis knew there would be a long wait to get his turn at Chaparral, being behind Grayson Barry the last three years. Then, when Miller, who has several major college offers, transferred in during the winter, it didn’t look good that Davis would ever play.
His involvement in baseball kept him away from off-season football stuff, putting him behind.
“But I always prepared like I was the starter,” Davis said.
Davis said he felt pressure playing against Desert Mountain, not only because of his brother but because he knows many of the Desert Mountain players.
“Although Jack was out, my teammates, coaches, friends and family were all really supportive and had faith in me,” Davis said. “I knew going to Chap, I had to be patient and my time would come. My freshman, sophomore and junior years, I just took in what I could and worked hard every day in practice.”
Now, Chauhan said that he and Miller are good friends, pulling for each other. Miller was there to congratulate Chauhan on his four touchdowns.
“That’s part of being a teammate, a band of brothers,” Lewis said. “We also have an offensive lineman who had his hardship denied. It’s been a rallying call: Next man up.”