Mocs DE Keionta Davis Appreciates Opportunity at UTC

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Chattanooga-(WDEF) When UTC landed defensive end Keionta Davis, they believe they got a diamond in the rough.

And now Davis hopes to shine in his sophomore season.
  No one may smile more during the Mocs dreaded two-a-days than Keionta Davis.
He’s just happy to be playing football.
Davis missed his senior year at Red Bank after tearing up his knee before the season.
His football future appeared clouded, until the Mocs gave him a scholarship.
And Davis was overcome with emotion on signing day.
"Actually just getting a chance to go play college football somewhere. I guess it just all kind of just built up at one time, and it all just came out."
Said head coach Russ Huesman,"For him to appreciate the opportunity really touched me. I actually remember seeing it. But that’s Keionta. He’s a great kid."
  Davis has blossomed into a 6’4, 254 pound physical specimen, catching everyone’s eye.
Said Huesman,"We had recruits up in the press box, and they always come down. My dad was at that game. Kind of chatted with him, and he just pointed out Keionta. He said wow, look at that guy."
   But it took awhile for Davis to deliver that ‘Wow Factor’ in his first year last season, mainly because he hadn’t played in two years.
"My first game everybody saw that I was kind of slow. As the season went on, I kind of picked it up a little bit."
  Davis arrived last year against the Citadel.
With UTC up 28-24 late in the game, Davis had back-to-back sacks jack.
"I remember ‘Toy’ (Toyvian Brand) got hurt. Coach called me over there. He was like, come on K.D. I need you. I was like, all right coach, I’ve got you."
  This year, Davis wouldn’t mind be mentioned in the same company as fellow teammate, All-American defensive end Davis Tull.
"If I’m on the field, I want them to respect me as much as they respect Davis. I want everybody to be able to have a one-on-one. Can’t really scheme for one side of the field. I want teams to be like okay, they are good all across the board, so what do we do."
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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.