Recruiting: OU in the hunt for five-star DE

West Monroe, La. defensive end Luther Davis talks about his top five and interest in the Sooners.

LUTHER DAVIS, DE, 6'4, 260, 4.7, WEST MONROE (WEST MONROE HS), LOUISIANA:

All college coaches will tell you that they have to recruit great athletes and players to win, but if they can find a great player who is a great athlete from a winning program, they know they have a chance to hit the jackpot. And that is exactly what a number of college coaches are saying about Luther Davis.

Blessed with great ability, Davis has been a factor on one of the best teams in the country since his ninth grade year, and he is going to finish his career as a three-year starter.

"Our record is 7-0. We ranked No. 1 in the state and No. 22 in the USA Today poll. Being ranked is nothing out of the ordinary. In 1998 and 2000, we were ranked No. 1 in the USA Today poll and won the National Championship both those years. It is a pretty big deal to me because I am a part of this program and on this year's team and we are ranked again."

West Monroe doesn't just play schools around their area, they will take on anybody anywhere.

"Last year we had a big national schedule, but this year we couldn't find anybody to play us. Last year we played Longview, Texas and we won 19-15. We also played two of the top teams in Louisiana that were on the other side of state and we won both of those games. I have only lost one game since I have been here and that was in the State Championship game my sophomore year.

"We played Evangel Christian and they are another powerhouse in Louisiana, and they beat us by one point. We scored with two seconds to go and trailed 21-20, went for two and didn't make it. We run the triple-option and we gave it to our fullback when we should have kept it or pitched it. Everybody in the stadium knew who was getting the ball on that play."

Davis finished last season with 74 tackles, 18 tackles for loss and eight sacks. This season, because of the teams' dominance, Davis is not playing much in the second half yet he still has 54 tackles, seven sacks.

"I am having a good year, but we have been so far ahead at halftime that I am not playing much in the second half. I am getting a little worried about it because we have the playoffs coming up in three weeks and I want to make sure I am in top condition."

Davis has been offered by over 50 schools and he is still receiving calls from a number of those schools every month, but in his own mind he has narrowed his choices down to a select few."

"I have a few favorites. They are USC, Oklahoma, LSU, Auburn and Louisville. I like all of these schools pretty well, and it is these five that I am concentrating the most at this point."

Davis recently got his first taste of the OU-Texas rivalry and came away totally impressed.

"That was a great game and a great experience. The fans were incredible. I couldn't believe the Oklahoma fans were so great. Those Oklahoma fans know their football and they knew who I was. I couldn't believe it. They even knew my stats.

"It was great to watch Oklahoma play. Even though they lost, they played hard and they played well. It was great to see Adrian Peterson play in person. It is too bad he got hurt, because he is one of the greatest players I have ever watched."

Is it the type of game that Davis would like to play in someday?

"That game was a great experience. I could see myself playing in that game someday. I am considering that because of my mutual hatred of Texas. I was listening to Rivals Radio one day and this Texas guy said the best high school football is played in Texas. He went on to stay that he didn't feel the high school football in Louisiana was that good. I thought he was disrespecting us because we have played schools in Texas and we have gone there and won.

"I think they play good football in Texas, but not any better than we do in Louisiana. He was saying that in Texas they have the best offensive football in the high school ranks, but I don't think it is that special. Their passing attack isn't all that good. I would like to play Southlake Carroll right now. So yeah, I am thinking about playing in that game and that would be a great thrill so that I can show those guys from Texas who really plays the best football.

"I am familiar with a few guys on the Oklahoma team who are from Louisiana. I haven't met them, but my brother met them. I didn't have a chance to meet Rufus Alexander, but my brother (Lucas Jackson/Arkansas) came out the same year that Rufus did and he met him."

At this point, Davis has only one of his visits out of the way.

"I have taken one to Louisville and it was a real good trip. I really enjoyed it. That is a great city, buy it is a long way to go for me to play football. Louisville has a good program and the city was very nice."

So how does a guy from Louisiana get interested in a school like Oklahoma?

"The same thoughts about Oklahoma have been lingering in my mind since the 2000 season. I grew up a Florida State fan and when I watched Oklahoma beat them in the Orange Bowl for the National Championship, I watched Oklahoma bring it and dominate that game. I watched Dan Cody play lights out as a freshman and ever since then I have been a Dan Cody fan. Right now I am seriously considering Oklahoma because they have three seniors at my position who are graduating, and they have one junior who may leave early.

"The distance isn't that big deal either. I think it is about six hours or about that I think. I was going to take an official to Oklahoma this weekend, but it is my birthday and I am going to stay home to celebrate. I will take that visit and the other three after the season."

Davis won't be coming on Saturday, but the top junior wide receiver in Louisiana is expected to be at the Colorado game. Mario Wiley (6'3, 195, 4.5) is a teammate of Davis' and an outstanding talent in his own right. For Wiley, it will be the first time he has been in Norman to check out the Sooners.


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