Lincoln High School running back Justin Davis was one of the first targets for Lane Kiffin and the USC Trojans, and he figures to be a player who will challenge for immediate playing time as a freshman. His early-entry status will allow him to play in the spring, where he figures to challenge Silas Redd, D.J. Morgan, Ty Isaac and a host of others for playing time.
In terms of athletic running backs who can fit within USC's pro-style scheme, it's hard to do better than Davis on the West Coast. Davis is about the prototypical height for a running back at 6'1, and if he grows into his body he could become one of the most explosive backs in college football.
Davis stands upright a little bit in his run movement. If you watch him on tape, he isn't compact enough in his stance, which invites undeserved punishment if he gets hit between the tackles. That's something that Davis will have to correct in order to avoid injury at the next level. However, he does have incredibly strong lower-body strength, which allows him to not only break tackles but maintain his balance while making cuts around the field.
His burst makes it hard for anyone to catch up with him once he finds the crease. Davis is strong enough to attack the hole with impunity and get out in the open field, and by that point it's hard to bring him down. Most of his highlights have him exploding through wide-open holes, so it's pretty easy for him to put up points. However, he also shows an ability to get out of trouble, follow his blocks, find the crease, and burst out into the hole.
Davis is one of the seven USC early entries who has already signed his letter of intent and is preparing for Spring camp. Davis figures to pair up with Ty Isaac from Joliet, Ill., and give USC two new running backs that will prepare the Trojans for the next era of USC football.
Ratings: Five stars
Vitals: 6'1, 194 pounds
Other offers: 21 offers
Recruitment timeline: Committed to USC in May.
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