TCU Football has seen its conditioning program rise in prominence over the last several years, reinvigorated by the return of the Night of Champions, an annual strength competition, and given national attention via Bruce Feldman’s annual “Freak’s List”.
For nearly 20 years, Feldman, a writer for The Athletic and reporter for FOX Sports, has “showcased guys who generate buzz inside their programs by displaying the rare physical abilities that wow even those who observe gifted athletes every day.”
This year, three Frogs made the list, with cornerback Noah Daniels, punt returner/wide receiver Derius Davis, and offensive lineman Wes Harris all impressing the CFB expert.
Daniels comes in at #42 on the list, having been timed at a 4.27 40, 10.34 in the 100 and 21.01 in the 200 meters. At TCU, he has benched 405 pounds and hang cleaned 400. Daniels was graded as one of the best cover corners in college football prior to being injured after four games in the 2020 season. His performance was highlighted by breaking up two passes, a quarterback hurry and totaling three tackles in a 33-31 win at Texas. “His tape is good,” Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy said. “His speed does show up on tape. That speed is real. He can really run. He just needs to stay healthy.”
Derius Davis, #71 on the list, is ”pound-for-pound the strongest guy on the team,” according to longtime TCU Strength and Conditioning coach Don Sommer. At just 5-foot-9 and 162 pounds, Davis has a 550 squat, 370 bench and 350 clean while being clocked at 4.3 in the 40. The former Louisiana state champion in the 200m, Davis led the Big 12 and ranked fifth nationally last season in punt return average at 14.5 yards. He was one of only three players in the FBS with two punt returns for touchdowns, reaching the end zone from 67 and 37 yards against Baylor and Kansas, respectively. He is tied for second in TCU history with three career punt return TDs on just 17 attempts. Davis placed fourth on the Horned Frogs in 2020 with 15 receptions and had a career-best game with six catches for 139 yards, including a 71-yard touchdown, in a 29-22 late-season win over No. 15 Oklahoma State.
Last on the list is “stupid strong” Wes Harris, a senior out of Aledo who also saw his 2020 season cut short due to injury. Harris is so off the charts that Sommer has to cut him off at a bench of 530 pounds, squat of 705 and 470 hang clean. The 94th ranked player on the list is expected to be a starter this fall.