Feb. 6, 2013
Davis learned toughness from his father
Marcus Davis has never been the biggest player on any football field. He never will be.
At 5-10 and 170 pounds, Davis will likely play slot receiver in Coach Gus Malzahn’s high-octane offense. While his quickness, vision and speed made him a dangerous threat in high school and a coveted college prospect, Davis prides himself on something else. Toughness.
It’s a trait he learned from his father, Craig, who suffered a stroke when Marcus was in the eighth grade.
While his father has fully recovered from the stroke that initially left him with severely slurred speech and unable to work, it didn’t come without a rigorous rehabilitation process that took months.
“My dad has had more influence on me because of the things that he had to overcome,” Davis said during his recent official visit to Auburn. “After what I saw him go through, I feel like if he is strong enough to overcome all of that, I am strong enough to do anything I want to do. I use that as motivation.”
Davis looks back on his father’s struggles as a blessing in disguise. It brought the two of them closer together.
“When it first happened, I thought it was really bad because he couldn’t really speak,” Davis said. “It was more of a mumble. I was really worried.”
Davis gained respect for his father’s toughness throughout the rehabilitation process.
“I was there with him every step of the way, and it just really brought us closer together. It brought my whole family closer together.”
It also motivated Davis to give everything he had on the football field.
“Football was important to me because I knew if I played well, it would make my dad happy,” Davis said. “That sparked me to work harder and keep going no matter what.”
Davis, a shifty athlete who played quarterback his senior year at American Heritage in Delray Beach, Fla., developed a close bond with Auburn receivers coach Dameyune Craig during the recruiting process. He was convinced Auburn was the right place for him after learning more about Malzahn’s offense and how he might be used in it.
“I am familiar with the offense from my high school, especially the fast pace, so I like Coach Malzahn’s plan,” Davis said. “I’m excited about it. I love it because it keeps the defense off balance and wears them down because play after play, they can’t stop even when they get tired. They have to get right back on the ball. After a while, they can’t handle it.”
Davis also said the “family vibe” he felt the moment his official visit to Auburn began pushed the Tigers over the top.
“From the first time I walked through the door, I just felt family,” Davis said. “All the people that I have met here are much nicer than the other places I’ve been. That made my decision a lot easier. I can’t wait to get to Auburn.”