Why UGA? Nation’s No. 5 LB Rian Davis breaks it down and discusses his new target
Want to attack every day with the latest UGA football recruiting info? That’s what the Intel bring at least four days a week. I’ve been wanting to write this story about Georgia LB commit Rian Davis for quite a while now. The nation’s No. 68 overall prospect for 2019 has an uncommon attitude toward his decision.
Rian Davis is just a different dude.
I’m not talking about the plays he makes at his 230-plus pounds all over his highlight tape. He finds his highlights like they were Easter eggs all over the field.
DE. ILB. OLB. RB.
Davis makes plays from all those spots.
He flashes his 4.6 speed enough to tally 94 tackles, 15 stops for losses, 5 sacks, 2 interceptions and 2 defensive touchdowns.
The way he moves just pops on that film.
But I want to take this blog to focus on the very uncommon way he went about handling the discovery and evaluation portion of his recruiting process.
I hold these truths to be self-evident when it comes to the way Rian (Ryan as in Nolan Ryan) Davis went about his recruiting:
- He never minded telling reporters which school was his leader.
- Georgia was basically his top choice from the moment he first visited Athens back in March.
- The Bulldogs remained his leader through four more treks to UGA.
- His first visit immediately became the best visit he had been on to that point.
- Davis felt he would commit right before his senior season. That’s what he did. When he said Georgia was going to be hard to beat, that was really how he saw it.
- He said the coaches he connected with the most were the ones on the UGA staff.
- When he said he felt Glenn Schumann might be the best ILBs coach in the country, he meant it. That wasn’t just for a reporter who covers the UGA recruiting effort on the regular.
- He carries the nickname “Trouble” as a nod to all the havoc he wreaks on the field, but he was never any “trouble” for the Bulldogs to hold on to once they seriously began to recruit him.
It was basically like he took a shot of truth serum prior to every interaction I had with him.
“I don’t know why I did it like that,” he said. “That was just me.”
It still seems very remarkable. Even to a fella who tries to file a daily blog year after year.
This was still different than that, though.
“I know a lot of dudes don’t believe in answering those questions like who the leader is and stuff like that,” Davis said. “I don’t find any problem with that. It is not like I am giving away who I am committing to. I am just telling them who my leader is at the time.”
He saw no need to shroud his thoughts in secrecy like he was guarding state secrets.
It was all rather uncommon. So much that it left me wondering how he planned to carry on day-to-day as a Georgia commit.
The sodium pentothal recruit had a lot to say on that front.
Here’s another look at his film. It will be another Easter Egg hunt to find a reel this year with a better variety of impressive plays than the first 15-20 made by Davis below.
The dude stands out amid the crowds there, too.
Rian Davis: The Georgia commit
“I already feel proud to be a Georgia Bulldog,” Davis said. “I really do.”
When the nation’s No. 5 OLB (per the 247Sports composite) says he is “pretty much all in” he somewhat undersells it.
As he texted the other schools to tell them he had committed to UG, they were not enthused. He said there was at least one “Nooooooo” that showed up on his phone.
“Alabama and Auburn were asking me if I was still going to take officials,” he said. “I said I was and they said they were still going to recruit me. That I had not signed my name on any paper yet.”
They can try. Please allow me to offer up an example which will attest to that.
Davis saw a basketball recruit place the Bulldogs in their top 5 the other day.
So he tweeted at the guy.
It is important to share here that Davis had no idea who that guy was.
“I just saw his tweet on Twitter and I was like ‘Come be a ‘Dawg’ just because he had Georgia in his top 5,” he said.
IM 104% COMMITTED GO DAWGS pic.twitter.com/rUiP2j9ogD
— Rian "Trouble" Davis (@Trouble_R4) July 30, 2018
Rian Davis has a recruiting target in mind
He is still planning on taking his remaining officials to Auburn and Alabama. He will also embark on his UGA official after the season.
“I will still come up to Georgia for a game though,” he said.
It will be the one when priority safety target Lewis Cine takes his official visit. That is the clash with those proud Volunteers from Tennessee.
“I’m recruiting right now,” Davis said. “My assignment is Lewis.”
Davis describes the degree of difficulty behind that task as if he was set to bench press 135 pounds.
“It will be easy,” Davis said. “I have got to get him there. Got to get him here. After he takes his official, I’m just going to work my magic.”
He appreciates what Cine can do.
“Watching his film he knows what he is doing,” Davis said. “I would trust him behind me. He can smash people.”
“Trouble” has already set his mark that weekend.
“If he’s coming up for that Tennessee game, then that is the weekend I will be up there,” he said.
What would he say to a recruit about why he chose UGA?
“It is like no other place,” Davis said. “There isn’t really any reason why not to go to Georgia. I couldn’t find anything wrong with it.”
The backstory on the Rian Davis commit
Davis will be an ILB at first but he didn’t plan to commit at the reveal. He was not a silent commitment.
— Rian "Trouble" Davis (@Trouble_R4) August 10, 2018
“I didn’t even plan on committing that weekend,” he said. “It just pushed me over. Just being up there for the fourth time just got me.”
“I had no idea,” Davis said. “But I was talking to coach Kirby Smart in his office the next morning. He told me somebody just committed this morning. But he didn’t tell me who it was. I guess they had not posted it yet. Then he was like I think we are getting another one today, too.”
That got the wheels turning.
“What got me was when coach Smart reassured me about all the negative things I had heard about them,” Davis said. “He just reassured me and proved it.”
That was the only thing that had been holding him back. Davis specified what he had been hearing from other programs.
“Too many linebackers in the room,” he said. “Just other little stuff I had heard. .. Too many 4-star and 5-star guys and just stuff like that.”
Smart sensed that was holding him up.
“I don’t know how he had heard that stuff but he knew,” Davis said. “He knew. He just stated the facts and told me. Coach Kirby Smart was like ‘A lot of guys be saying that we have 15 linebackers in the inside room but it was not true.’ He said ‘there are eight linebackers at each position and there are four leaving [at ILB] next year’ and he explained what was different for me.”
Watch that film. The difference here is Davis has the ability to play inside or out on the edges.
“He said I can play all four positions and I have a great chance to come in there and play somewhere,” Davis said.
Freshmen Bulldogs Adam Anderson and Jordan Davis also shared their feedback on the program.
“I was just talking to them about it,” Davis said. “They were telling me what they liked about it up there and telling me it was a good place to come and stuff like that.”
Rian Davis is also excited about 2018
The Georgia social media team is pumping out a lot of video recaps from each day of fall camp.
Davis notices. Then tries to keep calm and carry on.
— Georgia Football (@FootballUGA) August 14, 2018
“It just gets me excited,” he said. “I really want to be there and be a Bulldog.”
Davis and his Mustangs will actually travel to the Metro Atlanta area on Aug. 31.
Wekiva (Apopka, Fla.) will face North Gwinnett in a rare chance to see an out-of-state commit play less than an hour from UGA.
D.J. Daniel, the talented junior college cornerback, will make his commitment decision known at 2 p.m. on Thursday from Georgia Military College.
DawgNation will be on hand in Milledgeville to cover the choice. It boils down to Georgia, Kentucky and South Carolina.
Daniel rates as the nation’s No. 12 overall junior college prospect for the 247Sports Composite standard.
He also ranks as the nation’s No. 3 cornerback.
The pure 247Sports rating places him at No. 5 nationally and at No. 2 for his position, respectively.
Miss any Intel? The DawgNation recruiting archive will get you up to speed just as fast as former Georgia All-American LB Roquan Smith found the ball after the snap.