R. J. Davis (born October 21, 2001) is an American college basketball player for the North Carolina Tar Heels of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC).

R.J. Davis
Davis with North Carolina in 2021
No. 4 – North Carolina Tar Heels
PositionPoint guard
LeagueAtlantic Coast Conference
Personal information
Born (2001-10-21) October 21, 2001 (age 22)
White Plains, New York, U.S.
Listed height6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Listed weight180 lb (82 kg)
Career information
High schoolArchbishop Stepinac
(White Plains, New York)
CollegeNorth Carolina (2020–present)
Career highlights and awards

High school career edit

Davis attended Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains, New York. He led the Crusaders to a 27–5 record and the CHSAA city championship as well as the New York State Federation championship during his sophomore season.[1] However, he suffered an injury as a sophomore which kept him from playing in the summer circuit.[2] As a junior, Davis averaged 25.4 points, seven rebounds, four assists and 1.7 steals per game. Davis was named The Journal News Westchester/Putnam Player of the Year and helped the team reach the city championship game.[3] He averaged 26.5 points, eight rebounds, 5.3 assists and 2.1 steals per game as a senior. Davis was named a McDonald's All-American as well as Mr. New York Basketball.[4]

Recruiting edit

Considered a four-star recruit, Davis was ranked 197th by 247Sports in early 2019, but rose in most recruiting services' and was ranked No. 43 in the Class of 2020 according to ESPN.[3] Davis committed to playing college basketball for North Carolina in October 2019, choosing the Tar Heels over Georgetown, Marquette and Pittsburgh.[5]

US college sports recruiting information for high school athletes
Name Hometown High school / college Height Weight Commit date
R. J. Davis
PG
White Plains, NY Archbishop Stepinac (NY) 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) 165 lb (75 kg) Oct 21, 2019 
Recruiting star ratings: ScoutN/A   Rivals:    247Sports:     ESPN:    ESPN grade: 87
Overall recruiting rankings:   Rivals: 52  247Sports: 60  ESPN: 43
  • Note: In many cases, Scout, Rivals, 247Sports, and ESPN may conflict in their listings of height and weight.
  • In these cases, the average was taken. ESPN grades are on a 100-point scale.

Sources:

  • "North Carolina 2020 Basketball Commitments". Rivals.com. Retrieved May 23, 2020.
  • "2020 North Carolina Tar Heels Recruiting Class". ESPN.com. Retrieved May 23, 2020.
  • "2020 Team Ranking". Rivals.com. Retrieved May 23, 2020.

College career edit

Freshman edit

As a freshman, Davis averaged 8.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 1.9 assists per game while shooting 35.0 percent from the floor.[6] He was named to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference Academic Team.[7] He made ten starts in 29 appearances in his freshman year.

Sophomore edit

A starter all season, Davis was a member of the "Iron Five" starting lineup that led North Carolina on an improbable run to the 2022 Final Four alongside Armando Bacot, Brady Manek, Caleb Love, and Leaky Black. On November 13, 2021, he scored a then-career-high 26 points in a 94–87 win against Brown.[8] Davis broke his career high in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, scoring 30 points in the Tar Heels' 93–86 upset victory against Baylor. He became the first Tar Heel to score 30 points and post 5 rebounds and 5 assists in an NCAA tournament game.[9]

Junior edit

After the Tar Heels' run to the national championship game in the season prior, Davis, Black, Bacot, and Love all decided to return to Chapel Hill. Despite the team's preseason No.1 ranking, the Tar Heels struggled all season, missing the NCAA tournament and going 20-13 overall. Davis started all but one game in the 2022–23 season, and his lone appearance off the bench came on UNC's Senior Day, where it is tradition for all seniors being honored to start the game. He improved off of many of his statistics from the previous season, averaging 16.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game.

Senior edit

Davis announced that he was returning to Carolina for his senior season on March 24, 2023.[10] On January 22, Davis scored a career-high 36 points in an 85–64 win against Wake Forest.[11]

Career statistics edit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

College edit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2020–21 North Carolina 29 10 22.3 .350 .323 .821 2.3 1.9 .7 .1 8.4
2021–22 North Carolina 39 39 33.9 .425 .367 .833 4.3 3.6 1.0 .2 13.5
2022–23 North Carolina 33 32 35.0 .438 .362 .881 5.1 3.2 1.1 .1 16.1
Career 101 81 31.0 .414 .355 .850 4.0 3.0 .9 .1 12.9

References edit

  1. ^ Cordova, David (September 20, 2019). "This Is New York: Part 16: The Magical Summer of R.J. Davis". Dave's Joint. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  2. ^ Brown, C.L. (December 20, 2020). "UNC guard RJ Davis builds his progress by staying patient". The News & Observer. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  3. ^ a b Thomson, Josh (October 21, 2019). "Boys basketball: Stepinac's R.J. Davis, a Top 50 recruit, commits to North Carolina". The Journal News. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  4. ^ Zagoria, Adam (March 21, 2020). "North Carolina pledge R.J. Davis named New York Mr. Basketball". ZagsBlog.
  5. ^ Wilkerson-New, Brant (October 21, 2019). "Four-Star Guard R.J. Davis Commits to Carolina". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  6. ^ Martin, Ross (October 26, 2021). "WATCH: R.J. Davis 'Late Night' Scrimmage Highlights". 247 Sports. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  7. ^ Hughes, Grant (March 10, 2021). "UNC's Kerwin Walton and R.J. Davis Named All-ACC Academic Team". 247 Sports. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  8. ^ "Davis scores 26 as No. 19 North Carolina holds off Brown". ESPN. Associated Press. November 12, 2021. Retrieved December 9, 2021.
  9. ^ Jason McCallum [@JMacSC] (March 19, 2022). "Since assists became an official NCAA statistic in 1984, here's the list of players in NCAA Tournament history to have 30 points, 5 assists and 5 rebounds in a win over a 1-seed: RJ Davis. That's the list" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  10. ^ Smith, Adam (March 24, 2023). "RJ Davis Staying at UNC for Senior Season". InsideCarolina.com. 247 Sports. Retrieved March 24, 2023.
  11. ^ "RJ Davis, No. 3 North Carolina roll after halftime to beat Wake Forest 85-64". AP News. Retrieved January 23, 2024.

External links edit