TJ started his football career at Springer Nation in 1993, and as varsity QB he ended with a 17-6 record. TJ threw for 2,803 passing yards with 31 touchdowns as a starter. He was voted team MVP and received Honorable Mention in the Capital District that year. In his senior season, TJ was named 2nd team All-Capital District QB, All-Region Honorable Mention at QB, and Best Defensive Back at Highland Springs. After graduation, TJ continued his academic and football career at Catawba College, later transferring to Virginia Union University.