Davis excited about the switch

Last season speedy Michael Davis was called upon to help shore up a depleted BYU defensive secondary devastated by season-ending injuries. Davis performed well when defending against wide receivers, the very position he was recruited to play. Now Davis is back on offense and is wiser, savvy, and ready to score touchdowns.

Possessing 10.6 100-meter speed, Michael Davis is now focused on improving his route-running capabilities in an effort to be a potent force on BYU's offense.

"For me [the goal is] just to enhance my routes and stuff like that, because I'm pretty fast from what the coaches are telling me and everything, but my routes aren't too crisp," said Davis. "If I work on that then I should be maybe the next Cody Hoffman, who knows."

While being a more polished route runner is his short-term focus, Davis has a long-term goal of seeing the field this season. He wants to be the one scoring touchdowns this season rather than defending against them like he did last season.

"I think just scoring touchdowns and getting the ball a lot more," Davis said regarding what his goals for the season are. "It's a big thing for me to play. I'm going to stay in the film room with Coach Holliday and Coach Anae to just tell me what I need to work on. Just work on my routes and work on my catching."

On Tuesdays and Thursdays around 3:00, Davis and many of his teammates would get together and run seven-on-sevens. It was a way to help build better chemistry between the quarterbacks and receivers.

"We always work seven-on-sevens," said Davis. "I usually go with Taysom [Hill]. Every time Taysom goes, I go with him."

The chemistry between them is starting to emerge, and that was evident on the first day of spring camp on Monday. Davis caught a long pass for sizable gain.

"It's pretty good, yeah," he said. "It will be off sometimes because my routes will be a little too long, but sometimes he'll throw the ball way too late, but we're getting there."

Making the switch back from defense back to offense wasn't an easy one. Davis grew to like the challenge of playing defense.

"It was pretty tough because I really liked guarding the receivers," said Davis. "But now that I know how to guard them, now I feel like I can run around them."

Now that he's played on the defensive side of the ball, Davis feels he understands cornerbacks' tricks of the trade much better, arming him with a better understanding of how to beat them.

"I guess it would just help me to read the defense a lot faster than other receivers, especially in the way they're lining up," said Davis. "Like if they're playing cover-two, they'll disguise it. They'll come up and press me, then back off. If they're playing man coverage they'll just always show it."

Davis gets teased by his old defensive teammates from time to time now that he's made the switch back to offense.

"Yeah!" Davis said with a smile. "One of them is Craig Bills. He's a goofy guy. He's serious but he's a goofy guy. I try giving him a handshake, he would be like, ‘Alright, here… here you go Michael.'"

Now that he's back among the receivers, Davis has noticed among this year's group of pass-catchers.

"I think last year our receivers weren't too brotherly," said Davis. "We were kind of separate. This year with the new season everyone is coming together and everyone is hanging out at everyone's houses. We'll go out and eat lunch and dinner and stuff like that. I got a lot closer to Kurt Henderson, because last season I wasn't too close but now I am. I talk to him and ask him a lot of questions. Ross Apo is always there to help me out and [so is] Mitch Mathews."

The person most excited to see his return in the receiver camp is none other than BYU wide receiver coach Guy Holliday. The two grew close in their first year of being together through some good old fashioned ribbing. Now that Davis is back in Coach Holliday's group, he's made up for some lost joking time with Davis by pouring it on.

"He was [happy to see me back]!" said Davis with a chuckle. "Especially in the meetings, because he would make fun of me. He made fun of me today, calling me names and stuff like that."

Coach Holliday may have a reputation of being a tough guy on the field, but in the classroom where it's not as intense, he appears to have a bit of a fun-loving and funny side to him.

"I would be talking in the meeting and he would tell me to shut up and stuff like that," said Davis. "He's a funny dude."

Now that Davis has been on campus for some time now, he's adjusted well to being in Provo. He admitted though that it was a bit of a shock for him at first, having come from Glendale, California.

"It's kind of hard but I've got friends that help me," said Davis.

Many of those that took Davis under their wing and helped him adapt to the unique culture of BYU are those that were also members of the 2013 recruiting class.

"[I was helped by] guys like Jordan Preator, Kai Nacua, and Rob Daniel, as you know," said Davis. "Rob has been a big one for me to help me keep on track and everything."

Next season, the BYU offense will field a wide range of talented receivers with a wide range of capabilities. That includes players ranging from the tall and fast to the quick and speedy.

"Yeah, we can be scary on the field," said Davis. "We've got a lot of tall receivers, as you know. We also got a lot of speed, and speed kills. We've got speed on the outside that can just zoom by the corner and mess up the defense. We also got height advantage. So, receivers like Mitch Mathews and Nick Kurtz can go out and Taysom can just throw the ball up."


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