January 24, 2012

Football in the gym?

Kevin McCarthy

Paris Davis of Skyline High and the Oakland Rebels has never played organized football but he's a gridiron veteran of the basketball court. If that confuses you, read on.

The 6-foot-3 backcourter has enjoyed an interesting hoops evolution. "I was bigger than a lot of kids most of my life so I played the five and four when I was younger," he explained. "As a freshman, I was kind of like a running back, going to the hole and playing power forward-like. My parents tried to get me to play football but some of my cousins, like Damian Lillard, played basketball and that's what I wanted to do."

photo of Paris Davis player

A 2012 recruit, Davis added, "I'm really a scorer, I've been doing that the majority of my life and I think I'm one of the better shooters in Oakland. But I know how to rebound and do that well." He is averaging 21 points per game so far this season, plus over four rebounds a game.

Another attribute that aids Davis on the court is his uber-competitiveness.

"I hate to lose," he explained. "When I was real young and playing, the older guys would win the games. I'd get so upset I'd go home crying."

Now it's his opponents shedding tears.

Giving his parents credit for his basketball prowess, Davis said, "they make me strive to work harder. I can come home after scoring 40 and my Dad will ask how many free throws I missed or how many assists I got. Plus, my Mom has done so much for me. I want to pay them back."

He sports a 2.7 grade point average but vows "it will be 3.0 after this semester." Davis isn't sure of his college major as yet but is looking at criminal justice or sports medicine. His goal: "helping Oakland in some way."

Recruiting is slow right now and Davis wants to "go somewhere where I'm wanted, someplace where they'll help me get better." He's wide open geographically but said, "being close to home would be a blessing."

Asked about the Skyline season to date, Davis offered, "last year we finished 10-18 [4-6 in league play] but we're 11-6 right now. We're trying to put our numbers aside and get the W, doing it for the we, not the me." The Titans own wins over San Leandro, McClymonds and Montgomery so far and fell by two to Deer Valley.

This season to date, Davis totaled 35 points against Santa Teresa in a 97-93 four overtime 97-93 victory. In addition to a 24/10 double-double versus James Logan, he scored 24 versus Benicia.

Against the Florida Rams, one of the top clubs in the nation and the eventual winner of the Adidas Invitational in Indianapolis this past July, Davis had 17 points.

Here's Oakland Rebel Coach Ryant Diew on his player: "Paris also averaged about 19 points a game in last summer's July recruiting period. He was a big reason why we were so successful in the adidas Super 64 in Las Vegas."

Anyone looking for a power shooting guard?