Delray Beach American Heritage tight end Blake Davis didn’t know a year ago if football would be in his future.
A dislocated kneecap during a kickoff classic game ended his junior season before it began, sidelining him for the most pivotal part of a prospect’s recruiting process.
But Davis (6-5, 225, runs a sub-five-second 40) was persistent, as he rehabbed rigorously and went to as many offseason camps as possible in order to get on the recruiting radar. His busy summer included campus trips to UCF, Maryland, Vanderbilt, Florida State, Miami and TCU, among others.
His plan worked, and he's now committed to UCF, becoming the seventh pledge of the Knights’ 2012 recruiting class.
“It’s definitely emotional, it’s exciting more than anything,” Davis said. “Going from not playing football for a whole year. I just worked really hard and I feel like I’ve earned it.”
Davis, who actually committed last Thursday (Oct. 13) kept the pledge quite until Monday because his father, who lives in Texas, was on a hunting trip over the weekend and he wanted to tell his father first.
The Knights were front-runners for Davis through most of the season. He visited UCF for the team’s games against Boston College and Marshall.
“It was like 'wow, this is really nice and this is where I want to play,’ ” Davis said about his trips to UCF. “It kind of just put everything into perspective. It came to me that that’s where I wanted to be.
"The campus is great and the coaches were great throughout the entire recruiting process. They were honest and direct with me throughout the recruiting process, which is kind of hard these days.”
The Knights were the lone school to offer Davis, although he had been receiving a high amount of interest from TCU (his childhood favorite), N.C. State and Maryland.
Minnesota and Vanderbilt had also entered the picture the past few weeks, but, for the most part, Davis’ knee injury has kept him off the recruiting radar.
UCF offered Davis after he impressed the coaching staff with a solid outing at the team’s 7-on-7 camp over the summer, when the Knights' coaches looked for any residual side effects from his dislocated knee. Davis credits his orthopedic surgeon, the renowned Dr. James Andrews, as a large reason why he’ll be playing college football next year.
Three other patients that Andrews performed surgery on that day were former Miami Dolphins linebacker Channing Crowder and then-Alabama stars Mark Ingram and Terrence Cody.
“Same day, same doctor, same table, just different hours,” said Davis, who has logged 28.5 tackles and six sacks this season.
Last year at tight end, which is where UCF plans to play Davis, he played in the wing-T offense but still managed managed nine catches for 147 yards.
Davis potentially brings value as a diamond in the rough recruit for the Knights, but he could come with an added perk. His teammate and friend, Kelly Parffit, loves UCF and would likely commit if he receives an offer.
“Supposedly they’re getting closer,” Davis said of the Knights offering Parffit. “We talked to the coaches when we were up there for the Marshall game. He likes it too, we’re hoping that he gets an offer. If he does, what he’s told me, is that he does plan to commit. We want to go up together and play together. We’re just waiting for the call for him.”
Parfitt (6-6,290) is ranked as a three-star recruit by Rivals.com and has offers from FAU, Western Michigan, Western Kentucky, Bowling Green and New Mexico.
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