Future Impact: Dominic Davis

Although Alemany running back Dominic Davis has battled an ankle injury in recent weeks, he has still managed to have a few to break out games. Davis had 215 yards rushing and one touchdown against Dorsey along with a 99-yard interception return for a score.

Mission Hills (Calif.) Bishop Alemany four-star running back Dominic Davis committed to Washington State in surprising fashion last summer turning down scholarship offers from USC and UCLA.

However, the Trojans coaching staff didn’t let up on the state’s top returning sprinter, continuing to recruit him hard despite his decision to head out of state. As it turns out, that decision was premature.

“I committed to Washington State without a visit, but I liked the coaches and I felt I fit in well with their offense as a receiver.”

As he noted two weeks ago when asked about his commitment status with Washington State, the writing was already on the wall for the Cougars.

“This time, this go round, I’ll probably choose what’s best for the family and education always comes first,” said Davis then.

Davis took an unofficial visit to USC Sunday evening with his mother, and the decision was made to make his intentions of becoming a Trojan official.

"I've been thinking about this for the last few months," Davis said. "The more I thought about it, I realized I made a decision a little too quick and made it about football only.

“I liked how Washington State wanted to use me in their offense, but after talking to my family and some mentors, I realized that this decision is a lot bigger than just football.”

And while his commitment to USC was based on his education and his family, his fit at USC as a tailback is also of significance.

For comparison sake, Davis stated, “I’m more like Adoree (Jackson), but you could say Buck Allen too because he does a lot for that team, in the pass game and the run game.”

Running the 100-meters for Bishop Alemany in the low 10.6 to high 10.4 range consistently last spring, Davis’ speed trumps that of any offensive player lining up for USC this season. While Jackson has been outstanding for the Trojans as a two-way star at wide receiver and cornerback this season, his fastest track time in high school was 10.68 as a senior.

As a junior, Davis posted a 10.47 at the Mt. SAC Relays in April. While he compares himself to Jackson in terms of size and skill, Scout National Recruiting Analyst Greg Biggins sees a place for both players in the Trojans’ offense.

“Davis is going to be the fastest player on the field in almost every game he plays, so I definitely see a place for that,” said Biggins. “I don’t see him being an every down back that carries the ball more than 20 times a game, but he’s a good change of pace guy.

“You can run him six or seven times a game and then get him the ball out of the slot too. He can pretty much score from anywhere on the field, including special teams. He’s that true home run hitter.

“I think it would be fun to see him and Adoree out there together. Seeing two legit 10.5 sprinters out on the football field at the same time… if you’re a defense what do you do with that? Davis isn’t a 25 carry a game back, but he’s not a 5-foot-6, 140-pound midget either.

“You can use him in motion, sweeps, the passing game and just hand it off to him. He plays against good competition in a top league, so he’s not going to be overwhelmed by college football. I think he’s versatile and USC can be very creative in how they use him.”

USC doesn't have to be creative in getting Davis on the field. With redshirt junior running back Buck Allen draft eligible, the Trojans return just two other scholarship tailbacks in 2015. One of which, Tre Madden, has yet to play a down this season due to a turf toe injury.

USC does have a commitment from Cedar Hill (Texas) four-star tailback Aca’Cedric Ware. But Ware, 6-feet, 200-pounds, is a grinding combo back with 150 carries for 1,300 yards and 17 touchdowns on the season.

That’s 8.6 yards a carry against some of Texas’ best high school competition.

Running for 157-yards and four scores against national top 10 Desoto High School last week, no one would ever question Ware as a football player. However, Davis’ track speed lends itself to skepticism on the gridiron.

Will his speed translate in pads and a helmet?

“One hundred percent,” said Biggins. “I was just having a conversation the other day about Randall Carroll. I didn’t think he was football fast. You didn’t really see him run away from guys.

“With this kid Davis, he is running away from guys who have the angle on him. He also has quickness. Some guys are quick but don’t have the top end speed. Some guys have the top end speed but lack the quickness. Davis is quick in the hole and then has the ability to just run away from guys.

“Does he need to put on some weight to be more durable? Yeah, but that’s not to say he isn’t a tough runner. Davis runs hard and has good instincts, so it’s just a matter of him bulking up to 190, 195 to sustain the hits he’ll take.”

Davis becomes commitment No. 17 for USC in the class of 2015. And while just one of 17, this commitment is a representation of the greater philosophy Steve Sarkisian has used in recruiting. 

Committed or not, win or lose, USC will recruit relentlessly.

“I think USC knew he was still interested, so they weren’t spinning their wheels recruiting him,” said Biggins. “Davis committed and not long after started to listen to his family and his mentors.

“This decision became more about academics and alumni support. He realized it wasn;t just about football. It was about having a degree from USC and being able to say you’re a Trojan for life.

“He let the coaches at SC know that they should still recruit him. So with Davis and a guy like Keisean Lucier-South, USC knows they have sincerity.”

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