Sears knows he belongs
Doubt is way too strong of a word for it, but there comes a point for some football players competing at a lower level where they wonder if they can hang with the big boys?
One of the great things about the transfer portal is if you truly believe you can, there’s nothing to stop you from betting on yourself and making the leap.
That’s exactly what Oklahoma defensive tackle Davon Sears has done. After one year at Texas State that answered what he needed to have internally answered, it’s time to know if he can be a guy for a Power Five conference school.
Coincidentally enough, it was against a Big 12 school in 2022 where Sears felt like an emphatic yes was given to his question.
“When I went up against Baylor, I was like, yea, I can do this,” Sears said. “I know I can play with these guys.”
Sears had two tackles against the Bears and finished with 15 tackles and a sack last season for the Bobcats. After the Texas State coaches were let go, the door opened for Sears to pursue what else was out there.
It’s always risky because you don’t know what’s waiting on the other side of the portal. And honestly, the first couple of days had Sears wondering.
Once the first big-time offer came, others followed. Take that sigh of relief and know that your future is about to change in a hurry.
“Really, I didn’t get the big schools for a few days,” Sears said. “I was in there (portal) for two days. Man, if I don’t get any Power Five offers, I’m going to stay at Texas State. I think my first offer was Arizona State. Then I was like, alright. It was surreal because I always saw myself as that type of player.”
Sears loved his time at Texas State and loved the coaches. But he said when you don’t win, the emotional toll it takes on you can be rough. When all the training and work doesn’t pan out, it’s not easy to keep at it.
He’s hoping and OU fans are hoping there won’t be much losing to be dealt with in the 2023 season. After the 6-7 campaign in 2022, Sears is the type of player, type of difference maker OU is expecting to be able to help in the trenches.
That’s fine with Sears.
“It’s been real cool since coming here,” Sears said. “It’s been really challenging. I knew when I first got here, there was a lot to learn. I hadn’t been pushed like that. I like it. I’m excited to see what type of player I can become.”
Before Texas State, Sears was a junior college guy, so he is familiar with OU defensive tackle Isaiah Coe. Coe, of course, was also a juco guy before finding his home in Norman.
When Sears was trying to decide between OU, Tennessee and Penn State, Coe was someone that Sears could ask.
“I hit up Isaiah on SnapChat,” Sears said. “He was telling me about how they get treated here. Great culture, great fans, great opportunity. They needed defensive tackles and that I’d be crazy to not pursue.”
You can’t talk about the opportunity for Sears without mentioning what defensive tackles coach Todd Bates brings to the table.
It’s early in the process, but Sears is already learning about Bates.
“He is such a calm, collected dude that it can catch you off guard when he raises his voice,” Sears said. “He’ll yell at you, but then he’ll put his arm around you. There’s always that happy medium.”