KFHS senior commits to ECU

Published 8:52 pm Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Davon Grayson, a rising senior at King's Fork High School, has committed to playing football at East Carolina University.

By Matthew Hatfield


It wasn’t easy getting there, but King’s Fork Class of 2013 wide receiver Davon Grayson finally did it.

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Grayson set out this off-season to earn a scholarship offer to a Division I college football program.

Having missed seven games as a junior, his hopes of that happening looked dim. However, Grayson shined at several camps and combines he attended throughout the spring and summer, enough to pick up seven scholarship offers. His dream became a reality.

This week, Grayson decided to make his college selection, giving an oral commitment to coach Ruffin McNeill and the East Carolina Pirates of Conference-USA.

“I made a couple of visits to ECU and went to their camp. I took my whole family there, and we met the staff. I love the campus. The place feels like home,” Grayson told

“After having a conference call with me, my mom and my dad with Coach Ruffin, it seemed like the place for me. I talked it over with my parents and my high school coach, and they thought it was the best for me.”

The 6-foot-2, 175-pound Grayson chose ECU over offers from Charlotte, Furman, James Madison, Old Dominion, Richmond and VMI. His options were narrowed down to the Pirates and ODU, both of which are pretty close to home.

“First of all, they’re getting a great-character kid and individual person,” King’s Fork head football coach Joe Jones said. “He also happens to be an excellent football player and great athlete. When we went down there for the one-day camp, the secondary coach liked him as much as the receiver coach, and he didn’t do anything but receiver drills. They really liked his feet and his attitude.

“It’s close — within two hours — and that’s a good thing. I know it was a tough decision between them and ODU, which really liked him, wanted him and did a good job recruiting him. I had a feeling after the trip to ECU that was where he was leaning. It’s a really nice atmosphere down there, and they have a terrific facility down there. He’s going somewhere where he’s really wanted, and I think it’s going to be a win-win for both parties.”

Grayson, who earned the nickname “Beach” after moving to Suffolk from Virginia Beach halfway through his eighth-grade year, becomes the 10th Eastern Region football player in the Class of 2013 to commit to a college. Of those 10, he’s the first to venture out of state, as the other nine picked Virginia, Virginia Tech and ODU.

“He stepped in and became a player immediately,” Jones said of Grayson’s transfer to KFHS. “We saw that he was the kind of kid that others would follow, and he plays with a lot of emotion. The coaches really liked his aggressiveness and how he catches the ball with his hands, plus he’s an aggressive blocker. I think he’s going to be an excellent receiver for them at East Carolina.”

Like teammate and fellow rising senior Charles Clark, who committed in the spring to play college football at Virginia Tech, Grayson is an honor student. He maintains a 3.2 GPA and carries those smarts over to the football field.

East Carolina has had success on the field, winning the C-USA title in 2009 and playing in five bowl games since 2006. Their style of play is a fit for Grayson, as well.

“I’m excited for him, because if you’re a receiver that likes to catch the ball it’s a place you want to go,” Jones said. “They have a lot of the Texas Tech staff there with Coach McNeill, and they put the ball up probably 50-60 times a game.”

Grayson’s story of bouncing back from a setback could be an inspiration for other up-and-coming athletes in the area, the message being that perseverance can take you a long way.

“I think it should motivate our kids to know he’s had to overcome some adversity with the injury, and all he had was basically some sophomore tape and just a little bit of junior tape,” Jones said. “It’s really amazing that with only three games of junior tape that he was able to get the offers he had. It’s a testament to his commitment in the off-season to working and getting himself prepared. He made himself into a prospect.”