The Hurry-Up: Raesjon Davis Talks Impactful Relationship With Al Washington As College Decision Comes Wednesday

By Zack Carpenter on January 31, 2021 at 6:30 pm
Raesjon Davis

The Hurry-Up is your nightly dose of updates from the Ohio State football recruiting trail, keeping tabs on the latest from commits and targets from around the country.

Davis on relationship with Washington

When Raesjon Davis originally committed to LSU, as we touched on a little more than a week ago, the 2021 Mater Dei (California) linebacker was giving his pledge to the Tigers’ then-defensive coordinator Dave Aranda.

Aranda had also served as LSU’s linebackers coach, so that doubled up Davis’ relationship with him throughout the recruiting process. Once Aranda left to become Baylor’s head coach, that left Bo Pelini as the main recruiter for Davis. That relationship wasn’t as strong, and Davis told Eleven Warriors that that served as a major factor in his decommitment from LSU.

As we look at Davis’ recruitment through an Ohio State lens, there would not be a lack of a relationship with his potential future position coach in Columbus, Al Washington.

“We text pretty much every day,” Davis said. “We’ve been talking pretty much through my whole commitment ever since they offered me, throughout my whole process. I love him. He’s a super cool dude. He’s one of the only main coaches that I really click with. So I really like him a lot. That’s really why I’m stuck on Ohio State. And he knows my parents really well, and they’re all cool. He really clicks with my parents, that’s what it is. He clicks with my parents, and he makes it feel very family-like.

“I think it’s the personality because my dad doesn’t really like a lot of coaches like that. So he really likes him a lot. He says he always talks to him. I guess they talk more than me and him talk. They talk a lot. He always just says, ‘Yeah, I was just talking to Coach Washington.’”

Though the relationship Davis’ parents have with Washington stems exclusively from Zoom meetings, there is still a comfort from Davis and his family that Washington can help take his game to the next level.

“I know he’ll help me with the off-the-ball stuff,” Davis said. “And I do a lot of on-the-ball rushing, and I know he’ll be able to help me with on-ball stuff, engaging and getting off the ball. I know he’ll be able to fix my technique and get me ready for the next level.

“He says I play fast, I play physical so he just loves how I can rush off the edge and play coverage at the same time. So I know he wants to use me like that.”

We'll find out on Wednesday morning whether or not Washington will get the chance to coach Davis. Now officially down to Ohio State, USC and Oregon as his final three schools, Davis is set to announce his commitment at 11:30 a.m. on National Signing Day.

When asked how hard of a pull it is to stay home in Southern California by committing to the Trojans, the nation’s No. 4 outside linebacker simply said, “it’s not really hard.”

“(My family) just thinks it might be a smart decision to go there because of the lack of depth they have up there,” Davis said. “They like USC and Ohio State equally and Oregon as well.

“I like USC because I could see myself being able to play early there, and that’s one of the main aspects I’m choosing from. I really wanna play early and hopefully I can get some early playing time my freshman year. So that’s really my main objective, and hopefully I can start my sophomore year. And I’m really looking at somewhere I can be developed and get my education. I’m looking at those two, Ohio State and USC more.”

There is the remaining factor of whether or not Henry To'oto'o elects to transfer to Ohio State, which is still a good possibility. If he picks the Buckeyes, he would have two years of eligibility remaining and one of the bigger pulls for Davis to Ohio State would take a ding – the ability to become a contributor early on his career.

“Coach Washington said I would be able to make an impact early,” Davis said. “I’ll play my freshman year, but after my freshman year four linebackers are leaving so then I’d be able to get my opportunity. After that it would be kind of wide open.

“He said there would be like eight linebackers gone in the next two years. I know Ohio State produces linebackers so that’s why I see that being an option, for sure. … I’m just looking to where I can play early and get my time in there.”

Phone calls to juniors allowed starting Monday

The NCAA has decided to allow college coaches to make phone calls to players in the class of 2022, beginning on Monday:

As CBS Sports' Dennis Dodd points out, that's big news for players whose junior seasons were either canceled or postponed to the spring in order for them to start up the recruiting process more heavily.

Header photo: Raesjon Davis – Andrew Ivins/247Sports

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