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Friday, May 13, 2011
Noor Davis commits to Stanford

By Corey Long
ESPN Recruiting

THE VILLAGES, Fla. -- Under Armour All-American linebacker Noor Davis committed to Stanford during a press conference Friday at his high school.

The 6-foot-3, 225-pounder chose the Cardinal over Florida, Alabama, USC and Notre Dame. It's a return the Golden State for Davis, who was born in Los Angeles before moving to Washington, D.C. and eventually settling in north central Florida and playing at The Villages High School.

"This recruiting journey has been a memorable one and I thank God for his blessings," Davis said in a prepared statement. "I've had the pleasure of meeting wonderful head coaches, a Heisman Trophy winner, All-Americans and even a university president along with secretaries, equipment managers, maintenance workers, campus police officers and others that are an integral part of any University."

After thanking his coaches, parents, friends, neighbors and even his current place of work, Chick Fil- A, Davis nodded to his younger brother Gabriel to pick up the Stanford hat as the students and teachers in his school's cafeteria gave him a standing ovation.

"Stanford is the best fit for me as a student-athlete," said Davis, who is an honors student with a 4.3 GPA. "They have a tremendous football program that is nationally ranked and there is a great support system for the athletes. It's also a challenging academic institution where I plan on eventually earning a Masters degree in business. Once I saw them play in the Orange Bowl last season I knew that was where I wanted to be."

Davis' original plans were to wait until January and make his announcement at the Under Armour All- American game. However, he felt confident enough in his decision to move the date up seven months.

And with that out of the way Davis fielded some questions from his fellow members of The Villages student body including who he thought would win tonight's Green & Gold intrasquad game.

"I think The Villages High School will win," Davis said diplomatically.

While the 16-year-old might be mature beyond his years he might also enjoy something this weekend like most teenagers -- sleeping in late on a Saturday.

"I have a strong desire to return my life to normalcy." Davis said. "I'm appreciative of every program that has recruited me during this process and I've been blessed to develop strong relationships with many coaches. But I felt so comfortable with Stanford that there was no reason to wait. I also want to give the other schools an opportunity to devote their energy and resources to recruiting other worthy prospects.

Davis says he will visit Stanford over the summer and will take an official visit during the fall. He is also planning on visiting other schools and said he will take officials to some of the programs that were in his top five.

Much of the thinking in the past week had Davis linked to Florida or Notre Dame and he said that it was a close battle with all the schools involved. Adding a wrench to the plans was the recent offer of defending BCS champion Auburn. However, the Tigers jumped in too late to factor in his decision.

"It was a very tough decision and I'm grateful that I could make this decision," Davis added. "I developed a great rapport with my coaching staff," Davis said. "Coach [David] Shaw, Coach [Derek] Mason, Coach [Jason] Tarver, Coach [Lance] Anderson, and numerous other coaches.

Davis said he''ll be making official visits to some of the other programs as assurance that he has made the correct decision. He also said that Stanford's baseball team had recruited him before the football team did at the end of his junior year.

He recorded over 100 tackles and eight sacks as a junior and he also made contributions at quarterback for The Villages.

"It is just great to put it out there and let everyone know that my future is destined to be in Palo Alto," Davis added.

Corey Long has been covering high school football and recruiting in the Sunshine State since 1995. He can be reached at coreyespn@gmail.com.