For the last several years, venerated college football writer Bruce Feldman has produced a "freaks" list detailing the most outstanding athletes in the sport. This year's edition includes Florida linebacker Jarrad Davis, who checks in at a tie for No. 20 with Arizona 'backer Freddie Tagaloa of Arizona.
Here's why Davis is on the list, per Feldman:
Gators LB coach Randy Shannon said Davis has the competitiveness of Jon Vilma, the athleticism of Jon Beason and the football knowledge of Ray Lewis. DC Geoff Collins told me that Davis' "desire, drive and willpower are at the highest levels there is. Every rep he takes at practice or in a walkthrough is at a game-level focus. He's as intense of an individual as I've ever been around and one of the highest character kids as well." The 6-2, 240-pounder has timed in the 40 in the mid-4.5s and done 318 pounds in the clean and jerk. On the field last year, he had 98 tackles and 11 TFLs.
That is an insane combination of power and speed for Davis, who could certainly do worse for comparisons than that trio of Miami Hurricanes coached by Shannon, all of whom made at least three Pro Bowls.
Fans might be more familiar with some of the names at the top of the list — LSU wrecking ball Leonard Fournette, Oregon wideout-slash-Olympic hurdler Devon Allen, and hulking Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett are the list's top three in ascending order — but Davis, projected to be a possible first-rounder in the 2017 NFL Draft and expected to be one of the leaders of another fierce Florida defense, may make himself a household name this fall.