Jesuit (Tampa, Fla.) three-star running back Malik Davis landed a Maryland offer April 1, and since then he’s been developing a rapport with area recruiter Chris Beatty and running backs coach Anthony Tucker. The 5-foot-11, 185-pounder counts the Terps’ staff as one of his most ardent pursues, and said he wants to visit College Park, Md., for the first time this summer.
“Maryland is one of the schools I’m in touch with the most, and I want to go up there to see what they have to offer me,” said Davis, who counts verbals from the likes of Arizona, UNC, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Iowa State, Miami, Mizzou, Purdue, Syracuse, UCF, USF, Va Tech, Southern Miss and a few others. “I just have a great relationship with Coach Beatty and Coach Tucker. They’re after me like every day, and Coach Beatty came by the school for a workout. So I know they want me up there, and that’s what I want – a school that’s going to make me a priority.”
Davis said he used to watch Terps’ games growing up, mainly because of the Under Armour uniforms. Even so, he said it led to an affinity of sorts for the program.
“Maryland just a school I’ve always had my eye on,” Davis said. “Growing up I just always noticed them. Also, just from talking to Coach Beatty and Coach Tucker, I know they need me there and there’s a chance I could shine and build my own legacy there. It sounds like they have a lot to offer me with playing time, the offense and just being able to make a name for myself. I have to get up there to learn more and to meet the rest of the coaches.”
Maryland is one of many northern schools Davis plans on trekking through during the summer months. So far, he’s only visited in-state programs like UCF, USF and Miami, but wants to see Georgia; UNC; Duke; Va Tech; WVU; Maryland; Tennessee and potentially a couple more.
“Those are just some schools I have in mind right now, but things can change just depending on who offers and things like that,” Davis said. “There’s a lot of ACC schools I want to see, and some in the Big Ten and SEC too.”
Davis said he couldn’t begin naming true standouts until he sees a few more campuses. That said, he acknowledged the offers from Miami and UNC were “really good for me.”
“Miami and North Carolina were breathtaking offers. I was real happy with those two,” Davis said. “I like Coach Mark Richt at Miami and how he’s produced great backs. And when I went there, as I was watching practice, I could see myself playing there. I met the coaches and some players, and they were great people to be around. So I definitely like Miami.
“And UNC is just a school I really like, and I have a good relationship with the coaches. I have the utmost respect for them, because of how they treat me; how they talk to my mom; and how much they want me there. Like I said before, I want to go someplace where I’m wanted.”
The Jesuit back said North Carolina’s and Miami’s staffs have been in touch regularly, but he also mentioned he speaks to assistants from WVU; Va Tech; Iowa State, Maryland and Arizona frequently.
“And then there are some new schools that have been coming through [during the evaluation period],” Davis said. “I just got offers from Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana and Missouri, and schools like Florida; Duke; Georgia; Tennessee and Mississippi State have been by. [UF, Duke, UGA, UT and Mississippi State] haven’t offered yet, but they’re showing interest now. I’m hoping, like, Florida, Georgia and Tennessee offer. Those are a few I’d like to get.”
For now, Davis is hoping to see enough schools to be able to select a future destination by August.
“But even if I do commit in the summer, I still want to take official visits,” Davis said. “The process can be pretty crazy. Like, if I know for sure I want to go to a school and I want to make sure I have a spot, I’ll probably commit. But then I might see something at another place down the road, and it might blow me away. So you just never know what can happen.”
Davis is coming off a season where he rushed for 2,373 yards and 28 touchdowns.