EAST LANSING - Michigan State took a good, long look at defensive tackle prospect Carl Davis on Saturday during the July staging of MSU's Elite Camp, and Davis took another long look at MSU.
MSU coaches aren't allowed to comment on unsigned recruits, but it's a good bet that the Spartans liked what they saw. Judging by the smile on Davis's face after camp, the stock-on-the-rise prospect liked what he saw too.
"I had a real good time up here," Davis said.
What did he like about it?
"Just the atmosphere with all the coaches," he said. "They make sure they get you hyped, get you going. It's just a nice atmosphere right now."
The 6-foot-5, 300-pound Davis has offers from Michigan State, Iowa, Kansas, Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana.
At Michigan State's camp, he spent a lot of time at nose guard, showing power, quickness, good use of hands, ability to play low and coachability.
"It was a real good, productive day," Davis said.
He said he enjoyed working closely with Michigan State defensive line coach Ted Gill.
"He taught me techniques on how to improve the use of my hands and to explode through my hips," Davis said. "I learned a lot. I went against a lot of very good linemen. The competition was good. I got held up a couple of times, but that happens sometimes. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose."
That's the way to get better, right?
"Yes sir." he said. "Exactly"
Davis had some good exchanges with Cleveland Glenville's Dujuan Galloway, Traverse City West's 6-foot-3, 260-pound Blake Goodell, and 6-foot-5, 260-pound Greg Mancz of Anderson, Ohio.
Davis got by Mancz with a swim move, and later got movement on him with a good bull rush.
Davis got under Galloway and uprooted him a bit.
Against Goodell, he grabbed cloth, pulled Goodell forward, got him off-balance and went around him.
Detroit Cass Tech's Chris Devezin probably gave Davis his stiffest challenge. Davis got by him with a rip move and spin on one occasion, but in the rematch Devezin stood firm and bottled him up.
The 6-foot-1, 312-pound Devezin played well against other challengers. His coach, Thomas Wilcher, who was at MSU's camp, said Devezin has an offer from Eastern Michigan. More will likely be on the way.
"It was fun to go against these guys and work on some things," Davis said. "I just want to make sure I get stronger and be more effective for the college level."
Davis has good strength and athleticism right now, with an extremely high ceiling of improvement potential as he matures into his body and tightens himself up in a college strength program.
"They (MSU coaches) say they like my quickness," Davis said. "I'm 300 pounds but they like the way I can move for a big man.
"The came was real fun. I got to sit down with Coach Dantonio and have a good talk. It was productive."
As for Gill, Davis said: "He is a real good guy as a coach. He is very clear when he talking to you, making sure you know what he is talking about. Very effective. He helps you a lot. Instead of just yelling all the time, he points out what you need to do and helps walk you throw it and the next thing you know, you've got it."
When asked what schools he is looking at, Davis said, "I'm looking at here, Michigan State; Iowa; and Kansas."
The Spartans have seven commitments from in-state players, and Michigan State looks like it will be hard to beat for Davis.
At this point, it appears that Michigan State has offered scholarships to only three in-state defensive linemen, if commitment Will Gholston is considering a d-linemen. The others are Davis and speedy Warren Mott defensive end C.J. Olaniyan. All three offer different styles of play and could potentially give the Spartans their best in-state haul of defensive lineman in years.
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