J-Train is on track in recovery

Jabari ''J-Train'' Davis, the bruising 6-foot, 235-pounder regarded by many as the favorite to win Tennessee's tailback job this fall, is not yet 100 percent recovered from minor knee surgery. But he's very, very close.

''Right now I'm about 97 percent of myself,'' says Davis, a sophomore from Stone Mountain, Ga. ''I had the surgery in April, and I've been working hard to get ready for the season. In the next two or three weeks I should be 100 percent. Definitely by the start of the season I'll be 100 percent.''

Davis appeared on the verge of clinching the first-team tailback job last spring when he suffered the knee injury, missed the Orange & White Game and underwent a minor surgical procedure. The setback enabled fellow sophomores Cedric Houston and Derrick Tinsley to close the gap on him a bit. Redshirt freshman Keldrick Williams also is in the running at tailback, along with incoming freshman Gerald Riggs, Jr. Senior fullback Troy Fleming also projects to see some action at the position.

Although the competition for the first-team tailback job is intense, it's generally friendly.

''We all get along good,'' Davis said. ''Most of the time we work out together. We push each other, on and off the field. Me and Derrick are roommates, and across the hall are Cedric and Keldrick. Everybody gets along.''

Because of his imposing size, Davis played some fullback last fall and is penciled in to help at the position again this year.

''I feel I can play there sometimes, when they need me there,'' the J-Train said. ''I can play there when they put Troy in at tailback, and they need somebody to get him loose on some runs. We also have (converted linebacker) William Revill and we signed (incoming freshman) Ruben Mayes for the fullback position, so we definitely have some depth.''

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