While studying over the summer here at Purdue I was able to attend the alumni game that was followed by an inter-squad scrimmage. After watching the team, and surviving the sauna that was Mackey Arena, the player that I was hands down the most excited for was Rapheal Davis. Davis is a high energy player who was aggressive on defense and slashed his way to the basket. He also has a good beard which I hope he never shaves throughout his career here at Purdue.
Rapheal Davis - Fr.
Hometown: Fort Wayne, IN (La Lumiere HS)
6'5" 211 pounds
2012 prediction: 7th or 8th man off the bench
While researching the recruits the summer before they came, Rapheal was the one that stood out to me the most. Davis gives us a large two guard that will be a pain in the butt on defense and someone who's super athletic and can get to the basket. He's almost like a more offensively polished Kelsey Barlow, but not a royal dumbass. Another good thing about Rapheal is that he could also play some time at the small forward position as well with his size. He's not a great shooter, but when he gets into a rhythm with his pull up jumpers he can be pretty lethal.
Davis also showed that he can be pound the glass too as he almost finished with a double-double during the Italy trip where he averaged 14.3 points per game. The Italy tour seemed like it was the Davis, Sandi Marcius, Donnie Hale and DJ Byrd show as all played very well over seas. But Davis was constantly praised for his scoring efficiency, hustle, defense, and rebounding. Davis' best game came against the Vicenza All-Star team where he scored 23 points and pulled down 5 boards.
If he plays like he did in Italy during Big Ten season, Davis can be a match-up nightmare for a lot of people. I'm really excited to see what it will be like when he is matched up against Victor Oladipo from IU and Tim Hardaway Jr. of Michigan. Both players are similar to Davis is size and style of play, and Davis seems like the type of player who will want the challenge of shutting down a team's top player.
In high school Davis was ranked the number 10 recruit in Indiana the 96th player in the nation by Rivals.com. He helped take his school to a 25-3 record while also ending the season as the 7th ranked team in the nation. Davis averaged 21.5 points per game, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game his senior year. He's a do it all type of player and I think he'll fit Painter's system very well.
I'm a huge Rapheal Davis fan, and I hope he turns out to be a star for us in the future. I expect him to start off with about 10 minutes a game, but I think toward the middle and end of the season he'll see his minutes increased to about 15-20, maybe even more if he plays well. We need hard-nosed athletic guys on our team, and that's exactly what Davis brings. If he can give us around 8-9 points a game, 3-4 rebounds and a couple assist then we'll be in a good shape.