After racking up 116 receiving yards and two touchdowns in a pivotal win for the South Carolina State Bulldogs’ season, wide receiver Shaquan Davis has been named the East-West Shrine Bowl HBCU Offensive Player of the Week. Davis continues to produce at a high level this season as he establishes himself as one of the top FCS receivers in the 2023 NFL Draft class.
Week 8 HBCU Offensive Player of the Week
South Carolina State wide receiver Davis was named the East-West Shrine Bowl Offensive Player of the Week after helping South Carolina State to victory over North Carolina Central. The 26-24 victory has the potential to decide the destination of the MEAC title, and Davis was a crucial cog in providing the Bulldogs with a pivotal win.
After slipping behind to a Latrell Collier rushing touchdown — the only score in the first quarter — Davis snagged a 14-yard touchdown reception from Corey Fields early in the second quarter to tie the game up.
One of two Bulldogs on the Shrine Bowl 1000 Watchlist, Davis was the go-to guy for Fields as he’s been so many times this college football season, tallying six receptions throughout the game.
Davis’ second key contribution, other than his team-high 116 receiving yards, came early in the fourth quarter. Down 24-20 with just 12 minutes on the clock, Davis reeled in a pass from Fields for a 21-yard touchdown. When Duane Nichols picked off Davius Richard late in the game, Davis’ second score transpired to be the game-winning moment for a South Carolina State side that is now the front-runner to land the MEAC title.
With his second 100+ yard performance of the season, Davis is now over 500 receiving yards for the season. Meanwhile, the South Carolina State wide receiver now has seven touchdowns for the year.
A big-play threat with an eye for the end zone, Davis has only failed to score a touchdown in two games this year. He’s impressed against FBS-level opposition, having snagged 35 yards and a score against UCF. The Bulldogs standout also racked up 62 yards on just three receptions against SEC opponent South Carolina.
Davis is accustomed to performing a pivotal role in South Carolina State’s biggest games. He landed on the national radar after helping the Bulldogs win over emerging HBCU powerhouse Jackson State in last year’s Celebration Bowl.
The big-bodied pass catcher tallied five receptions for 95 yards and three touchdowns in the 31-10. According to Draft HBCU Football Evaluator Malik Obee, that performance was just a springboard to the sort of showing that has earned Davis the Shrine Bowl HBCU Offensive Player of the Week.
“South Carolina State wideout Shaq Davis is proving to those who first got familiar with him at last year’s Celebration Bowl was just a highlight of what he brings to the table.” As part of their recently announced partnership with the Shrine Bowl, Draft HBCU is helping to promote HBCU programs and prospects in the run-up to the 2023 NFL Draft and beyond. The Shrine Bowl HBCU Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week are just a small part of this initiative.
“He’s got great height at around 6’4” and is a great athlete,” Obee tells Pro Football Network about what makes Davis such a desirable 2023 NFL Draft prospect at the wide receiver position. “He boxes out defenders in the air, has a great catch radius, great sense of awareness of where he is on the field. Big physical wideout that can run the entire route tree. Davis is physical and confident; you get the same effort in or out of the conference.”
While Davis has the requisite traits that you look for in wide receiver evaluation, Obee also points out that he ticks a box that many people overlook. This ability can help separate the South Carolina State pass catcher when teams are on the clock in April. “Willing blocker and just an all-around ball player that the Bulldogs consistently have been able to rely on. I think he has a good chance of playing on Sundays.”
At 6’4″ and 180 pounds, Davis has the size to be impactful at the catch point while having the speed to add a dangerous threat after the catch. It’s a combination that’s sure to prove alluring in the 2023 NFL Draft.
While pro comparisons can be dangerous and prove futile, they also serve as an example of the type of player a prospect can be at the next level, and Obee has one for the South Carolina State wide receiver.
“Davis reminds me of DeVante Parker. Looking forward to seeing how Davis closes out the season and how he shines when given an opportunity in one of the showcase games — hopefully in Vegas at the Shrine Bowl.”
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