Rivals250 QB Dematrius Davis Jr. ready for 'big games' at Auburn
After not so suddenly backing off his longtime Virginia Tech pledge earlier this month, Dematrius Davis Jr. has pulled back the curtain on his future plans.
Davis, the top uncommitted quarterback out of Texas, committed to Auburn on Sunday, a plan that had been materializing behind the scenes for several months -- even while the Rivals250 prospect was still verbally committed to the Hokies.
Davis is the No. 144 overall player in the country. He's the No. 6-ranked dual-threat in the 2021 class and the No. 20-rated prospect in the Lone Star State. He's coming off back-to-back Class 6A Division I state championships at Galena Park (Texas) North Shore High School and is one of the most highly decorated quarterbacks to come out of the state.
Chad Morris, who recruited Davis dating back to his stint as Arkansas' head coach, led Auburn's charge for the Houston-area dual-threat. Morris' relationship with Davis dates back to the quarterback's freshman year and has not waned even as he shifted from Arkansas to his new role as the Tigers' offensive coordinator. Morris sold Davis on playing on a bigger stage in the SEC and having an opportunity to learn behind Bo Nix before competing for a starting job.
Davis is the eighth addition to Auburn's 2021 recruiting haul, which entered Sunday ranked No. 27 nationally in the Rivals team rankings. Davis is the first quarterback committed to the Tigers in this cycle and the only Texas-based prospect in the group thus far.
IN HIS OWN WORDS
"They did a lot. They recruited me hard the last few months. They had two quarterbacks try to commit to them, but they denied them both for me. They were really serious about me. It's the best opportunity for me to win an SEC Championship or a national championship. They have one of the best defenses coming into the season every year. A good offense and a good defense ... things can happen like they did for LSU last year."
"He (Chad Morris) did really well with Deshaun Watson. Watson is doing great right now and he's about to sign a new contract making millions. I trust him and I'm real serious about him. He didn't tell me what I wanted to hear; he was serious about everything and he has been since my freshman year. I know Coach Morris will be there for all of my four years there."
"What really made me commit -- the opportunity to play in big-time games every week. I'll have the opportunity to get my name out there once I get on the field and do what I do."
"The picture of Auburn compared to Virginia Tech ... everything academically was better. Virginia Tech wasn't in the same league as Auburn and I had to be smart. I had to realize I was going to Virginia Tech to play fast. When I committed (to the Hokies), I knew I could play there my first year, but then I thought -- it would be OK to sit behind someone like Bo Nix my freshman year. I know that even if I'm not starting, my time is coming."
Davis is one of the most decorated players in Texas high school football history. He is in rarified air with former Oklahoma and Allen (Texas) High quarterback Kylar Murray as the only quarterbacks to lead their high school programs to consecutive state championships in the state's largest classification.
Over the past two seasons orchestrating the Galena Park North Shore offense, Davis has amassed more 6,000 yards through the air, another 2,000 yards rushing and 103 total touchdowns. Each of the last two seasons has concluded with Class 6A Division I state championships -- in the state's highest classification -- over North Texas powerhouse Duncanville. Davis has a 32-2 mark as North Shore's starter.
As a sophomore in 2018, Davis threw for 3,350 yards, 43 touchdowns compared to two interceptions. He added another 421 yards rushing with six more scores as North Shore averaged nearly 41 points per game. Davis was named the National Sophomore Player of the Year by MaxPreps after leading his squad to a 16-0 record culminating in the 6A-DI state title game victory, which was sealed with Davis' Hail Mary toss to beat Duncanville.
In 2019, Davis passed for 2,393 yards, 30 touchdowns and five interceptions. He completed almost 61 percent of his passes -- and did so without consistent contributions from teammates Zachary Evans (five-star running back) and Shadrach Banks (Rivals100 wide receiver), who were in and out of the lineup throughout the fall due to various injuries and off-the-field issues.
Davis is a dual-sport standout that also competes at track and field. The quarterback has a verified 4.77-second 40 time, a 4.38-second shuttle and a 32.7-inch vertical. Davis has also clocked a 15.22-second time in the 110-meter hurdles.
In addition to being a proven winner that exudes confidence and checks off a major box as a field general, Davis has the ability to dictate the outcome of games with his skill-set. Because he's a quick decision-maker with a confident arm and the ability to take off and run, Davis keeps defensive coordinators on edge.
Davis is a bit short in stature (5-foot-11, 190 pounds), but it has no impact on his ability to make every throw in the short and intermediate parts of the field. His mobility allows him to extend plays, move calmly within the pocket and evade pass-rushers, and make calculated throws.
Davis remains a pass-first dual-threat. He can quickly diagnose coverages and notice mismatches in coverage and makes a habit out of exploiting opposes defenses. He also keeps defenders off-balance with a devastating pump fake when he wants to lead defenders to a certain part of the field or take off and run.
As a pure passer, Davis can effectively make throws within a 45-yard range and allow the weapons around him to make a play. That pertains to throws in and outside the hashes. Davis becomes more limited when throwing downfield, but can send a ball 35 yards with the flick of a wrist as he falls to his right.
Davis, who confidently slides within the pocket, can rifle passes in between the numbers and hit his receivers in stride. That accuracy is consistent when Davis is on the move or throwing outside the numbers as well. Davis can also balance laser throws with touch throws and has an extremely good feel for the game to pick and choose.
When Davis calls his own number in the run game, he's dynamic in space with quick feet and the ability to make sharp cuts and, at times, get slippery. He has a second gear with noticeable straight-line track speed and if you need five yards, he'll earn you 10.