Davis, Mattison have Connection

It wasn't Rod Davis's first trip to Gainesville, but the nation's No. 9 rated defensive tackle had the chance to spend a lot of time with the Gator coaching staff and players this time around.

Roderick Davis is a 6-3, 295-pound defensive tackle from Houston's Eisenhower High School and committed to Texas A&M last February. But the recent coaching change and the uncertainty in College Station has caused Davis to open back up his recruiting process. He came to Gainesville in September to watch the Gators face off against SEC East rival Tennessee, but this weekend's official visit was a lot different.

"On gameday, it was all flashy and people were tailgating, but it was pretty quiet there this time around," Davis said. "It wasn't very crowded on campus since most people went home for the holidays. It was mostly just athletes on campus."

Known as a big run stuffer, Davis is used to getting double-teamed and this weekend was no different. The Florida coaching staff threw both of the Pouncey twins at him to try and draw his services to Florida.

"They were cool," Davis said. "They were real laid back and like to chill just like me. They were trying to get me to relate Florida football to football in Houston. They were telling me what it was like for some of the guys that they have from Texas. They talked about the type of football that they play and how Florida football is different from Texas football."

Maurkice and Michael Pouncey would know Florida football best, but they don't have a whole lot of experience with Texas football, so the three of them compared notes.

"In Florida, most teams, they play real witty," Davis said. "In Texas they just play fast and hard. But in Florida, they play mind games, but they also come off the football real hard and smash you in the mouth."

There is someone who knows a little bit about Texas football and that's Greg Mattison who would be Davis's position coach if he came to UF. Mattison was an assistant at Texas A&M and coached Dexter Wesley who was all-conference and now is one of Eisenhower High School's assistant football coaches.

"Mattison talked to me about the same old stuff," Davis said. "He asked me if I can see myself playing in Gainesville."

Head coach Urban Meyer asked Davis the same question when the two got together.

"He's a down to earth guy," Davis said. "He understands how to talk to players. He told me that they needed me. He asked me at practice if I was I paying attention to those guys, and if I could I see myself stepping in now and competing with them and I told him that I could."

Davis was most impressed with how close the team was and how close the coaching staff was to everyone around the program, but only graded the visit as a nine on a scale of 1-10. Davis said the biggest issue with Gainesville is how far it is from home.

But he'll have one more chance to visit the Sunshine State when he plays in ESPN's high school all-star game in Orlando on January 5. Davis said he could make his final decision known during the game. As for now, he's not ready to list any favorites because he doesn't want people making any judgments on his list of favorites. But he did say that he can still take three more official visits, he just hasn't decided if he'll take them or not.

Questions or comments? Contact FightinGators.com's Chris Chmielenski

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