New WVU tight end commit Treylan Davis shares a background with the state of West Virginia and its flagship football program, and those factors were key in his decision to join the Class of 2021.
“The people and the fan base in the area, they are so genuine. It’s a blue collar state. It’s kind of the same as here in Jackson (Ohio),” the ultra-polite Davis told BlueGoldNews.com.
An outdoorsman who has spent a good deal of time fishing while waiting for the athletic world to re-open, Davis has several ties to the Mountain State.
“I have a cousin that graduated from West Virginia, and I have a lot of family in Sissonville,” he detailed. “I always watched WVU on TV growing up, and I played them on NCAA football when those (video) games were out. Also, (WVU offensive lineman) Blaine Scott is from Portsmouth, which is close by, so I knew him. I can’t wait to get there – there are just so many similarities and it is a great fit for me.”
Before he does, though, there’s the matter of a senior season at Jackson High School. The Ironmen ran off 11 straight wins to start the 2019 season, including a first-round playoff victory, but were then bounced before reaching the state level. Davis aims to fix that this year. That, more than reaching any personal goals, is what is driving him.
“I want to help lead a group of guys that become family together and will do anything for each other. Whether it’s now or 25 years from now, I want us to be a group that is always there for each other,” he said, showing maturity in his identification of one of the major benefits of team sports.
He also wants to move further along the playoff path, and help Jackson reach the state playoffs.
“I would love to make a statement,” he said of his personal goals, which don’t include numbers but rather an arc of improvement. “I want to show that I have put in a lot of work this offseason and that guys from the southern part of Ohio are just as good as those from other parts of the state.”
On the field, playing in a run-heavy offense, Davis made the most of his limited opportunities. While he did not know his complete statistics as a junior, he did rack up some 250 yards and five touchdowns receiving. He’s still learning the ins and outs of the position after playing in other slots earlier in his career.
“I started off as a running back, and I did that for a long time,” he related. “Then I played quarterback in eighth grade and as a freshman in high school, so I’ve been a little bit of everywhere. My physicality and athleticism led me to tight end, and it fits for me. We’re a running offense, and I play tough and physical. We’re blue collar boys.”
Davis says that last proudly, and it’s clear it’s a bedrock of his game. That was one of the factors that West Virginia’s coaching staff liked about him as it continues to lay plans for increased use of the tight end in its offense.
Davis has watched as the position, seemingly doomed as an afterthought during a recent stretch of seasons, has returned to prominence. That has him excited about his prospects as a senior, and at WVU in 2021 and beyond.
“I am varied. I can block and line up on the line of scrimmage, and I can catch the ball as a vertical threat,” Davis said. “Coach Gerad Parker, he’s used tight ends a lot in his previous positions. He said they could use me as an H-Back, or out of a two-point stance, or even flex me out.
“I’ve always been able to maneuver and get to the ball and make plays,” the 6-foot-5, 230-pounder said. “I’m always trying to work on that. I have been blessed with some ability and I’ve worked hard to make it better.”
That work, as it has for everyone, has been curtailed due to the effects of COVID-19, but true to his roots, he’s made the best of the time spent away from organized team workouts and practices. Using his own weights, and running – the staple of just about every athlete – he is passing the time while anxiously awaiting the start of his senior year.
“The last I heard, we are looking at July 1 here in Ohio,” he said of the hoped-for start date. “I’m ready to get back to playing.”
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Davis could have one more stop between his final season of high school football and WVU. He has been selected to play in the Hawaii Tiki Bowl on an all star team of players from across the nation. That experience includes several days (Dec 30-Jan.4) in Honolulu, including the game on Sunday, Jan. 3.