Davis Tull led the SoCon in sacks with 12.5, and he led the league in tackles for a loss with 19. Despite those big numbers, he was a little surprised to be named the league's best defensive player. "I was a little bit shocked. People had told me I might get it, so it was in my head already that there's a chance. But when you actually hear it, it's a pretty amazing feeling, especially for this being only my second year playing."
Tull has a story of perseverance. He suffered a gross leg injury his senior year of high school. "My leg just got stuck in the ground, and I ended up breaking my femur, so it was kind of a big deal. I had to go to the hospital that night and get a metal rod. It's still metal today."
And then when Tull got to UTC, he broke his hand…twice. Said Mocs head coach Russ Huesman,"We are going to start giving him some more milk everyday. (laughter) We were nervous about it."
But Tull believes his leg injury made him what he is today. "I can tell you right now, I wasn't working half this hard before. I'm very thankful for God putting me in that situation."
Coach Huesman says Tull has become a force in the Southern Conference.
"(Elon coach) Jason Swepson walked off the field and asked me if number 90 was a senior. I said no, he's a sophomore. He just went, oh no. So you know that people notice him."
Tull becomes just the second sophomore to ever win the league's defensive player of the year award. The other was App State's Dexter Coakley, who went on to the Pro Bowl with the Dallas Cowboys. Said Huesman to Tull,"Do you even know who Dexter Coakley is?" Said Tull, "Yeah. Appalachian State." Added Huesman,"Yeah. Dallas Cowboys. You better be as good as him brother.(laughter) You just got compared to him, so you better make sure you are doing what he did."