The elder Davis gushed about his son's official visit. "It was fine, very good. I really enjoyed myself. It was my first Midnight Madness, and I really enjoyed it." Larry seemed particularly impressed with his future teammates performing their acts in "Bearcat Idol," and he didn‘t rule out his participation in 2007. "It was crazy, but you might see me out there next year."
Larry went into some details about his official visit, and it seemed to include a lot of food and some work in the weightroom. "We got in on Friday, and we ate and hung out with the players. We went to Midnight Madness and hung around the school on Saturday and ate all day. I watched them practice twice and lifted weights with them once."
Skyline and Gold Star Chili were apparently not a part of the food tour, but it sounded like Montgomery Inn was. "We went somewhere far, like about thirty minutes away. There was sports stuff on the walls, and we had ribs. They were good and the sauce too. We had a whole slab and an order of ribs."
Rashad Bishop, the swingman from St. Benedict's Prep in New Jersey, was initially Larry's roommate for his visit. Larry spoke about Rashad. "After the weekend was done, he told me he wanted to commit."
This is obviously a close family, and Alief, Texas is a long way from Cincinnati, but Mr. Davis wasn't going to let that distance dampen his enthusiasm for his son‘s college choice. "It's not as close as I would have liked, but we're happy with his decision. He's the one that has to go to school there so wherever he's happy, I'm happy."
The Davis Family: Larry II with his mother & father at Bearcat Madness
By attending Midnight Madness, Mr. Davis got the chance to see many of Larry's teammates next season and evaluate them. "I feel like Larry will be able to come in next year and fit in real good. Everybody will still be learning the way Coach Cronin runs his organization so Larry shouldn't be too far behind."
According to Mr. Davis, it didn't take long for Coach Cronin to make a favorable impression. "I first met Coach Cronin after the Adidas all-star game in the summer. We met and talked after that. They then came in and said all the right things as far as his education. That's what got me really impressed with him. He talked about Larry graduating on time and stressed that academics were more important than him playing basketball." Larry agreed with his father's assessment of Coach Cronin. "They weren't really focused on basketball. They were focused on making sure I got my degree." But academics wasn't the only reason Larry chose UC. Playing in probably the best conference in the country was also enticing. "I wanted some competition." Larry will definitely get his wish in the Big East.
Larry did not take any official visits before verbally committing to the Bearcats. Mr. Davis explained why. "We were more concerned with the person Larry would be playing for than the school. We were impressed with Coach Cronin's honesty, and he didn't talk badly about any of those other schools recruiting Larry. He just told us straight up that he was most concerned with Larry going to classes and graduating."
Mr. Davis and Larry listed some of the schools that made official scholarship offers. That list included Texas A&M, Boston College, Utah, SMU, Houston, Arizona State, Miami, and Iowa State. According to the Davises, those schools have honored Larry's verbal commitment to Cincinnati.
When your son decides to play at a school over a thousand miles away, a parent has to take advantage of all his options. Mr. Davis outlined his simple plan and gave a little chuckle. "I'm signing up for Direct TV, and every time I can hit that highway, I'm hitting it." Mr. Davis was already very aware that a number of Bearcat basketball games would be televised on ESPNU this season.
For now, Larry Davis II is just a Bearcat fan, but he's counting the days until he becomes an official Cincinnati Bearcat and is able to continue the proud tradition of UC basketball.