ATHENS - Reggie Davis began answering before the question was done.
“Yes sir, yes sir. I do wanna play.”
There wasn’t much chance of that a little over a week ago, when the Georgia football team began camp. Davis is a freshman receiver, one without much hype coming in, and the Bulldogs are so deep at receiver that a redshirt seemed the likely route.
Then Davis began running.
The native of Tallahassee, Fla., may be the fastest player on the team. Until his arrival, it was generally agreed that fellow receiver Justin Scott-Wesley held that distinction, with tailback Keith Marshall meriting some mention.
“That hasn’t been settled in a race,” Davis said. “It’s a good debate between me, Justin and Keith Marshall.”
Davis was a standout on his high school track team, and said he once ran a 10.4 in the 100-yard dash, and a 21.2 in the 200. That’s great and all, but you have to translate it to pads, fooling defensive backs and catching ball.
So far he has, according to teammates, emerging as the offensive surprise of the preseason.
“He’s showing out right now,” fellow freshman receiver Tramel Terry said.
The comparison has also been made to Malcolm Mitchell, who was a similar size when he arrived as a freshman two years ago. This is how Mitchell described Davis: "Raw. Come in straight raw, just run. I couldn't see myself when I came in, but from what I heard it's the same thing."
Davis knew when he got to campus that he would have to use his speed in order to overcome his size. He’s listed at 6-foot and 160 pounds.
He’s working at the outside “Z” spot right now, behind Malcolm Mitchell and Chris Conley. The other receivers certain to be play this year include Michael Bennett, Scott-Wesley, Rhett McGowan and Rantavious Wooten. That leaves one or two spots (barring injuries) to Davis, junior college transfer Jonathan Rumph and redshirt freshman Blake Tibbs. (Freshman Uriah LeMay seems certain to redshirt, while Terry’s recovery from knee surgery leaves him up in the air.)
So far there have been no promises of playing time or not redshirting to Davis. The only thing coaches have told him, according to Davis, is to keep up the good work.
“I think I just have a chance to help out, whenever they need me. I don’t know when or what game, but you’ve just gotta wait up on your turn.”