Number Association Countdown – #21 – Zola Davis
I know, calm down Ryan Brewer fans. I made the rules – first player that pops into my head – so I have to abide by them. (For the record, I love me some #21 Lou Holtz edition just as much as you.) I guess I picked Zola Davis because I’m a big-time jersey number guy, and I’ve always loved to see a WR wear a number in the 20’s. It’s like they’re saying “I don’t give a crap what number I have on my jersey, I’m going to beat you like a rented mule.”
Davis came highly recruited to USC and as the guy who was going to put an extra gear into Brad Scott’s high-powered offensive machine. (A machine that did indeed become offensive.) He wound up having a good career, but not great, which is what we were banking on.
The lasting memory I have of Zola is catching a TD pass from #18 (who we’ll get to later) in the back of the end zone just before halftime against UGA in Athens. It was so easy and so effortless, with his soft hands and arms way too long for his body. It was the first game of the 1995 season, and we were coming off a season in 1994 in which we had thrashed Clemson 33-7 and won our first ever bowl game. Life was good as we took a 14-7 lead into the locker room against UGA.
Then, UGA unleashed a converted DB on us named Robert Edwards who proceeded to score five TD’s and run for 160+ yards. The next week we went into Arkansas and Madre Hill scored six TD’s in a 51-21 ‘Hog victory.
Sorry Zola, the unpleasantness of that season still overwhelms me.