De'Ron Davis Sees Improved Health, Confidence From Offseason Program

Stu Jackson, Staff Writer
The Hoosier

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Jordan Wells / TheHoosier.com

De'Ron Davis on Tuesday afternoon admitted his summer conditioning program has been going well but also had its ups and downs. Even with the challenging days he's experienced, though, the IU sophomore forward can't argue with the results.

More than halfway through the offseason plan, he's already noticed a difference after dropping 20 pounds from his 6-foot-10, 271-pound frame.

"I feel good," Davis said. "I don't have any injuries right now on the court it was my first time with team practice was yesterday. I feel really good on the court, I feel light and explosive, and I'm just ready for the regular season to start."

That's welcome news for Indiana head coach Archie Miller, who became driven to get Davis into shape and become one of the most improved players in college basketball this upcoming season after one of their first workouts together this spring.

The first and biggest adjustment for Davis came with his diet.

To make the transition to healthier eating habits easier, Director of Athletic Performance Clif Marshall taught Davis and sophomore guard Curtis Jones how to grocery shop earlier this summer.

"I've always been good on watching what I eat as far as healthy food, but just probably portions and really focused on getting my carbs from healthier foods," Davis said.

His teammates, such as junior forward Juwan Morgan, have also noticed a difference and drawn inspiration from Davis' transformation.

"I see a new found determination in De'Ron," Morgan said. "Before he would always talk about it, and when he first got here last year it was always a confidence thing. Now he's more confident. He sees the changes going on. We all see it, and we're just going along with him and encouraging him as he's going along.

"A lot of us have made changes with him. I know myself, I probably eat bad three out of the seven days a week. Then I saw what De'Ron was doing with his body and said, why not? And just joined along with him."

As a freshman, Davis played 13.1 minutes per game off the bench during the Hoosiers' non-conference portion of the schedule then saw his playing time increased to 19.7 minutes per contest during Big Ten play. He also averaged 5.9 points and 3.1 rebounds within his confined role.

However, he also struggled with foul trouble, committing a team-high seven fouls per 40 minutes according to KenPom.com.

Davis said those issues were a result of being out of shape and believes his new conditioning will prevent that from happening again.

"I used to foul a lot when I got tired, I would try to get a breather," Davis said. "So me getting in better shape, me losing the weight (will help with) taking away some of those foul-prone injuries."

Miller on Tuesday commended Davis not only for his progress in the weight room but in the classroom over the summer.

From a conditioning standpoint, Miller said Davis is where he should be.

"He's moving and jumping as good as he ever has. He has a great confidence about him," Miller said. "I think he feels good about himself. He still has another gear I think he can reach, which is good as he approaches these next three weeks and then he goes home.

"But he's right where he should be in terms of what we've asked him to do, and I think he's gained confidence because he's worked very hard."

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