We’re three weeks away from the start of the Syracuse football season, and with that in mind, we chatted with one of our favorite guests, former Syracuse and NFL defensive back Dowayne Davis, on this week’s The Juice on the Cuse Podcast, presented by SNY.tv.
Dr. Davis, as we discussed with him last year, currently serves as the Executive Director of Finance and Operations for YouthBuild Newark and The Newark Opportunity Youth Network; two non-profit organizations designed to provide academic programing to underserved youth.
Dr. Davis played four years at Syracuse, and ranks 10th on SU’s career tackles by a defensive back record list (216). He went on to stints in the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys, Kansas City Chiefs and Detroit Lions, but has always continued to follow Syracuse closely.
One thing in particular he paid attention to last year was Syracuse’s defensive back unit in Tony White’s new 3-3-5 defense.
“They really played well as a unit,” Dr. Davis says. “They played consistently and get to the ball and make plays. They definitely stood out as being leaders on the defense.”
One particular person Dr. Davis has circled is Garrett Williams. As a freshman, Williams as named given honorable mention All-ACC honors after finishing with 64 tackles, 10 pass break-ups and two interceptions.
Dr. Davis praised Williams’ “ability to get to the ball” while being a “good back line force for the defense.”
And despite SU sputtering to a 1-10 record, Williams still has confidence in Dino Babers as Syracuse’s head coach, as does the rest of the alumni base that Dr. Davis still speaks with.
“Last year was a bump in the road, but there’s still a lot of confidence in Babers,” Dr. Davis says. “Any of the guys I talk to, it’s always good positive things, that he’s taking the team in the right direction. We’re hoping for a much better this year.”
Regardless of last year’s record and the low expectations, Dr. Davis remains confident in SU.
Said Dr. Davis: “Our expectation is always high at Syracuse.”
Afterward TJO Columnist Sam Vescovi calls in to preview the 2021 ACC football season, and preaches calmness in the face of the latest round of college conference realignment.