Geneva's Davis commits to Temple for academics, football

Geneva rising senior Sam Davis committed to Temple University on Thursday for academics and to play football starting in the 2020 season.

GENEVA — Sam Davis wanted to make his collegiate choice for academics and to play football before the 2019 Geneva Eagles season started.

He did so, posting on twitter Thursday his announcement to join the Temple Owls program.

The 6-4, 270-pound offensive lineman received numerous Division I offers. He whittled the list down to three — Temple, Rutgers and Ohio — before settling on the Owls starting in the 2020 season.

"It gave me the best opportunity for academics and to play," Davis said of the Philadelphia school which plays in the American Athletic Conference. "They told me I was the No. 1 offensive lineman they had on their board."

He'll officially sign his letter-of-intent with Temple on the early national signing day on Dec. 19.

Davis, a first-team all-county selection in 2018, said the plan is for him to red-shirt as a freshman with a chance to start the following year and having an extra year of eligibility. He added he's scheduled to early enroll at Temple in January.

"It's a big relief," he said. "I was going back and forth. "I wanted to get it done with. We got with practice (on Tuesday) and felt that Temple was the best fit. I let the offensive line coach (Joe Tripodi) know and he started screaming.

"The head coach (Rod Carey) was on vacation and when he found out, he said that made his vacation."

Davis has talked and trained with another Geneva graduate Cory Morrow, who walked on at Akron before earning a scholarship and earned three letters, about the process. Morrow was at Akron from 2012-16.

"He knows the kind of work that goes into college football," Davis said.

It's that type of support and help Davis said made the process go smoother.

His post on twitter Wednesday read, "First I would like to thank God for allowing me to wake up everyday and play the game I love at the highest level.

"Secondly, I would like to thank my Mom (Leigh), Dad (Dan) and sister (Taylor); ever since an 8-year old kid came home and told you guys that he wanted to play Division I football, you did everything to assure that dreams came true. From driving across the country, to motivating me everyday to do my best in the classroom as well as on the field. You guys truly showed me what happens when you put your heart to something and go get it. I love you guys.

"Last I would like to thank my coaches and teammates; coach (Chip) Sorber, coach (Don) Shymske, coach (John) Mirabell and coach (Tim) Goff. You guys have not only pushed me to become the best player I can be but have also taught me life lessons I will cherish the rest of my life. I am forever grateful for the rest of my life."

The Owls finished 8-5 last season. Geoff Collins left to become head coach at Georgia Tech.

Manny Diaz was hired as head coach, but he left only after a few weeks to take the head coaching position at Miami University.

Carey was hired in early January from Northern Illinois.

Davis is now ready to get the Geneva season going. The regular season begins Aug. 30 at Madison.

"From the beginning I wanted to make my decision early," he said. "I'm focused on my senior season and am excited for coach Sorber and the team."

Sorber said Temple is gaining a quality person on and off the field.

"Sam has made two programs very proud — one in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and one in Geneva, Ohio," Sorber said. "Now, Sam can focus in on his senior season of high school football."