Menomonee Falls running back Julius Davis more than a viral sensation

 Julius Davis has officially gone national, as of Monday night, Aug. 28.

The Sports Illustrated official Twitter account tweeted out video of the Menomonee Falls junior’s crazy touchdown run against West Allis Hale from Aug. 25, MaxPreps included his run as the No. 1 high-school football play of the week. Yahoo Sports reached out to him on Twitter looking to use the video, as well.

Davis has gained overnight notoriety thanks to a 67-yard touchdown run against West Allis Hale, part of his team’s 49-7 victory in a Greater Metro Conference clash. He scored four touchdowns in the game, but video of his longest run — reminiscent of a Marshawn Lynch scamper in the 2011 NFL Playoffs — is what everyone will remember.

“I did end up making an error the drive before, and I wanted to give back to my team and make up for that mistake,” Davis said. “My linemen made a huge hole for me, and when I saw it, I hit it. I was thinking, ‘Yes, this is the perfect chance.’ There were a couple guys surrounding me, and then I saw someone try to dive for my legs. I’ve seen other people do it, so I thought, ‘Why not try to hurdle?’ Everything after that just happened so fast. All I saw was green ahead of me, I was just trying to get there.”

Davis not only executed the hurdle over a would-be tackler, but did so while pulling a mid-air spin move. He then shed three tacklers trying to drag him down farther downfield, with a stiff arm over the final handful of yards as icing on the cake. 

“It’s cool, yeah,” Davis said. “But I’m just trying to live out my dreams and get to the next level. It’s cool and everything, but I’m trying to stay humble.”

Two huge games

Davis, who now has seven touchdowns in two games for the Indians, rose to prominence late in his sophomore season, which was key when Menomonee Falls went on a memorable late-season surge. MFHS knocked off Brookfield Central — which hadn’t lost in the Greater Metro to that point — in the 2016 regular-season finale just to qualify for the playoffs, then toppled top seed and undefeated Menasha in Level 1 of the postseason.

“We had a senior starting in front of him last year, so he didn’t play until halfway through the year,” Falls coach Dan Lutz said. “I didn’t really know what we had until we started playing him. I think it was the West Allis Central game in the middle of the year last year that was more or less of a coming-out moment. We started to feature him as the year went on, and that coincided with our finish. He fits into our identity: He’s hard nosed, physical, and he’s perfect for what we do.”

Davis said he understood why he flew under the radar, partially because he’d been dealing with fairly significant hip injuries during his freshman year.

“I was coming off an injury, and the coaches didn’t really know who I was,” he said. “I was used to that because I moved from Milwaukee to Menomonee Falls, and my dad preached to me that I don’t have a spot secured; you have to work for that spot. You have to work your way up there, and that’s what I did. I was really driven to at least try and get some playing time to prove to the coaches that I belong here. Eventually, I had a couple good plays, and the coaches gave me a chance and let me keep going form there.”

Bigger things ahead

Now, everyone knows his name in Menomonee Falls, and some know his name around the country.

“it’s probably one of the best high-school runs I’ve seen,” Lutz said. “Everything about it, I was kind of amazed, I kept thinking they were going to get him down, He’s a very gifted runner inside between the tackles and with contact.”

The 5-11, 185-pound Davis, with close to 420 yards rushing already on his stat sheet in 2017, now turns his attention to longer-term goals. 

“I knew there was a lot expected out of me,” Davis said. “There’s a banner in the locker room with everybody who’s rushed for over 1,000 yards — some great names for the Falls. Coach told me, ‘I believe you can be better than this person’ (pointing at the banner). It gave me the confidence, this is what I’m going to set my goal for. I always have goals for myself to get a certain amount of yards or touchdowns to help my team out.”

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