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Kneecap injury in past, Davis focuses on the field

Iowa's Brett Van Sloten (left) tangles with Carl Davis during a Kid's Day scrimmage at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012, in Iowa City, Iowa. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette-KCRG)
Iowa's Brett Van Sloten (left) tangles with Carl Davis during a Kid's Day scrimmage at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012, in Iowa City, Iowa. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette-KCRG)

IOWA CITY -- Injury details are always sketchy in college football, particularly with the Hawkeyes.

In the spring, coach Kirk Ferentz reported that defensive tackle Carl Davis had knee surgery. The only thing you could rule out was a torn ACL. He didn't play in Iowa's final five games and ACL injuries are pretty hard to miss.

This week, Davis, a 6-5, 310-pounder, said the knee injury was . . . extremely painful sounding.

"I had my kneecap pop out of place twice," the sophomore from Sterling Heights, Mich., said. "I had that fixed. Everything went well. As you can see, I'm still running around here full speed."

The first time it happened was last August during a one-on-one drill in practice. The second time was during the season.

"My foot was kind of in and I was kind of leaning out," Davis said. "It [his right kneecap] went out and back in place, popped out and popped back in. It was quick. It was painful, but I got through it."

Davis wears a tight knee sleeve on the knee, but he only does that out of preference.

"I don't really think I need to," Davis said. "I think this leg is actually stronger than it was before. I've been doing a lot of rehab with it. I might wear a brace, it just depends on how I feel."

This answers the mystery of where Davis was on the field last season. While Iowa was running out of D-linemen, he was having his knee cap put back into place.

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From all accounts, Davis has had a solid camp. At times during Iowa's Aug. 18 scrimmage, he was a force. He also was buried on a few plays.

"Like any new player, itís a matter of playing with his technique," Ferentz said. "You still have to play with technique even though youíre bigger. Part of that is pad level. I think thatís a challenge for any younger player, playing with the technique they know they have to play with, thatís one of the challenges, then playing with consistency.

"Heís a hard guy to move if he keeps his pads down. Hopefully, that will work to our benefit. Weíre excited about him. I think heís got a good future."

Davis is healthy and hungry. Now, his biggest hurdle is a mohawk haircut that looks as though it constantly needs a touch-up.

A few players got it done during camp. Wide receiver Kevonte Martin-Manley talked Davis into keeping it.

"You can blame him for that one," Davis said. "Anthony Hitchens, Nico Law, B.J. Lowery all had it for awhile, but they but it off. They left me out to dry. I'm the lone solider right now."

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