Anthony Davis: To Declare or Not To Declare, That Is the Question

Josh RosenbergCorrespondent IDecember 20, 2009

It was a surprise to all of college football fans when Anthony Davis, the No. 1 overall offensive lineman recruit signed his national letter of intent to go to Rutgers University, passing on a full ride to THE Ohio State University.

The most highly touted player to commit to playing "On the Banks" in Rutgers history, Davis did what not many other high-profile high school players from the Central New Jersey area had previously done.

Malcolm Jenkins, once a five-star recruit from Piscataway, committed to Ohio State, was a top 15 draft pick, and is currently a starter for the New Orleans Saints. Kyle Wilson, once a five-star recruit from Piscataway, committed to Boise State and looks to be a first round pick in the NFL Draft this year. Hall-of-Fame quarterback Joe Theisman, who played high school football in South River, and countless others have spurned Rutgers to play for better teams.

Anthony Davis' decision to stay in New Jersey and play in his hometown was the beginning of a successful pipeline of recruits from Central Jersey's power schools.  This pipeline continues with the recent commitment of all state linebacker Dave Milewski from Sayreville and all area wide reciever Jawaan Wynn from Piscataway.

Davis has had a very successful career at Rutgers so far and the question has arisen as to whether he will follow in the footsteps of Ray Rice and Kenny Britt and leave early to be in this year's NFL Draft. AD has avoided all the questions about declaring the draft, and will have a news conference on Tuesday to discuss his plans.

For now, the question remains. Will he stay or will he go?

At 6'6 feet and 325 pounds, The Sporting News and Phil Steele Third team All-American is the ideal size for a left tackle.

He is very powerful and has surprising agility that most offensive tackles his size lack.  He is a good run blocker and superb at pass blocking, taking on the likes of NFL-bound Big East defensive players of the year George Selvie and Greg Romeus single-handedly. Both players haven't recorded a sack against Davis or Rutgers.

All signs point to Davis going to the draft this year, as he is rated the No. 3 Offensive Tackle by ESPN draft expert Todd McShay and rated No. 1 by and With many teams in need a of a franchise left tackle, Davis could be a top 10 pick in the draft, maybe even top five.

If Davis declares early for the draft, Rutgers offensive line will be losing three starters. This wouldn't be the best news for them, although returning linemen don't seem to mean that much to how the line will end up.

Two seasons ago Rutgers returned two starters on the offensive line and ended up only surrendering 14 sacks. This past season, Rutgers returned all five offensive linemen and gave up 39 sacks.

It seems like it would be crazy for Davis not to declare for the draft. However, one big deciding factor could be the same person who convinced Davis to come to Rutgers in the first place: his grandmother.

Yes, Anthony Davis was told by his football coach that he should go to Ohio State, but listened to what grandma said and went to Rutgers.

Hopefully, Grandma Davis will sit Anthony down and talk to him about staying in college so that he can be next year's consensus No. 1 overall pick, get a college degree, and continue to help his team as an integral part of the rise of the Rutgers football program.