Since 1992, Ohio State linebackers coach Bill Davis has been an NFL coach. Now, for the first time since 1991, Davis has to do something he has never done before. He has to recruit.
Recruiting is everything in college football these days, and despite having never done it, Davis said he views his inexperience in that area as a positive for him and for the Ohio State program.
"I have never done recruiting so it is brand new to me. Like I told Coach (Urban) Meyer, that is a positive. You tell me how you want it done, and that is how you are going to get it done," Davis said. "The routine and the way we do recruiting here, I am a blank slate and he can make it whatever he wants it to be. So I am attacking the recruiting trail like the rest of the staff is."
While Davis might be new to the recruiting trail, he is no stranger to Meyer and his family. Davis was Meyer's best man at his wedding and played college football with Meyer at the University of Cincinnati before getting his first coaching job as a graduate assistant at Michigan State.
Davis said he and Meyer have been close since their days at UC and added he believes the two have very similar personalities when it comes to coaching.
“I think coaches usually gravitate toward each other. We weren’t coaches at that time, but he had a passion for the game like I had a passion," Davis said. "I think you get like-minded people around you like you pick all your friends and that is what it was.”
As for the position group Davis is set to take over, the Buckeye linebacker unit brings back Jerome Baker and Chris Worley, the latter of which is making a move inside to the middle linebacker spot. In addition, Dante Booker is set to return after missing 12 games in 2016 with a knee injury.
Davis said while he doesn't believe the players in his unit are quite NFL caliber yet, he believes the trio of Baker, Worley and Booker all have the ability to reach that level in their career.
“There is a lot of meat left on the bone before I can say that. What I will say is, they are a very athletic group," Davis said. "They have got great size, length and athleticism. All the pieces are there, now we just have to work our way into where we can say this is a NFL group.”
If there is a coach who knows how to develop NFL linebackers, it is Davis who has spent time coaching linebackers and NFL defenses for nine different NFL teams over the course of his career.
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