Don Callahan/Inside Carolina

Record-Breaking Tailback Malik Davis Will Stay in the Sunshine State, Selects the Florida Gators

The South's 37th-ranked running back, Malik Davis, just committed to the Florida Gators and goes in-depth about the life-changing decision with Scout.

Malik Davis recently accomplished history by becoming Hillsborough County's all-time leading rusher with an eye-popping 5,774 yards to show for it, and now he's slated to extend his playing career with Jim McElwain and the Florida Gators.

Davis, a product of Tampa (Fla.) Jesuit that's less than a week removed from hitting the jackpot and landing his coveted Florida offer, is a self-assured young man that views the University of Florida as the total package when it comes to that perfect blend of athletics and academics.

Lacing up the cleats in front of friends and family just roughly two hours up the road doesn't sound too bad either.

"It's not far home, and I feel like I can go up there and make an impact," Davis said. "I'm all about competing, so I'm definitely not worried about competition or anything; you have to compete anywhere you go and prove yourself all over again when you get up to the next level, especially in the SEC.

"I carry myself like a top player, so I want to go to a school that's producing their top guys. I feel like I can get a great education there, and it's not far from my home and my parents can still make my games. I think their offense and what they're doing fits me perfectly."

It's safe to say that Davis' recruitment was a two-team race prior to netting last Friday's game-changing opportunity from the school residing in Gainesville.

"To be honest, out of all my offers, Miami (Fl), North Carolina or Florida, I always knew I would end up at one of those schools," Davis said.

"It was just something different, like a different feeling; I felt like I definitely accomplished something."

Recruits typically have to play the waiting game in regards to landing offers from some of those nationally-recognized schools at the Power Five level. There were certainly some challenging times along the journey, but Davis, who's tagged as the 37th-ranked running back out of the South, continued to trust the process and gave McElwain's staff no reason to wait any longer.

"I've kind of been talking with the coaches since before I started getting a lot of offers," Davis said. "The running backs coach (Tim Skipper) and (defensive line) coach (Chris) Rumph always wanted me to get up there for a camp, so I stayed in contact with them from time to time.

"They would always send me stuff from time to time, and that's when I asked if they were still recruiting running backs. The running backs coach and coach Rumph had then hit me up saying they wanted me, and I ended up talking with coach McElwain the same day."

The Gators are heavily reliant when it comes to pounding the rock and making full use of their ground game, and that's nothing but music to Davis' ears.

"I think they're a run-first team, and everybody knows you have to be able to run the ball to win football games; that's what I like," Davis said. "The running backs that have been there have been successful as well."

Davis, 5-foot-11, 190 pounds, is equipped with additional scholarship offers from the likes of KentuckyMarylandIllinoisIndianaWest VirginiaPittsburghVirginia Tech and Missouri.

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