Sports

Daies ’21 leads comeback over URI

Daies completed his first collegiate touchdown at Governor’s Cup against URI Saturday

By
Senior Staff Writer
Thursday, October 5, 2017

Before the football team’s victory over the University of Rhode Island Saturday, rookie running back Darius Daies ’21 hadn’t recorded a single collegiate touch. But after somersaulting into the end zone for Bruno’s first touchdown of the Governor’s Cup, Daies became the team’s secret weapon. He led the Bears’ rushing attack with 16 carries for 95 total yards and two touchdowns. Despite playing only two quarters all season, Daies is now Bruno’s overall leading rusher.

Daies was named the Ivy League Rookie of the Week and one of the Brown Athletics student athletes of the week, and he received recognition from FCS Stats as an honorable mention nominee for National Freshman Player of the Week. For his game-changing performance and impressive acrobatics, Daies has been named The Herald’s Athlete of the Week.

Herald: Before Saturday, you didn’t have a single collegiate carry. What were you thinking when Coach Phil Estes ’18 called your number to go into the game?

Daies: I was kind of confused at first because there was about a minute left in the first half. I thought he was just going to put me in just so the other running backs wouldn’t get too tired or hurt.

You went on to score two rushing touchdowns that gave Brown a chance to beat URI. What was that like?

That was super exciting — probably the most exciting thing that’s ever happened to me in football. It just felt surreal.

Was that flip into the endzone really necessary?

Looking at it now, no. But I thought it was then!

Why did you choose Brown?

I was looking between here, Harvard and Columbia, and I just really liked the atmosphere here a lot more than I liked the other ones. The other ones — at least Harvard — seemed a little more cutthroat and intense. Here, it’s a really chill vibe. No matter if you play a sport, if you’re in clubs or if you’re just a regular student, everybody is easy to get along with and talk to. I like that a lot.

How’d you get into football?

My dad played defensive back at the University of Florida, so it’s just a thing in my family. I started playing in first grade.

Do you have superstitions or pre-game rituals?

I just like to listen to my music.

What’s your go-to pre-game song?

Right now it’s “I Get the Bag” by Gucci Mane. It’s our team song sort of, so I listen to it a lot.

Is there another athlete you model your game after?

In St. Louis I was good friends with (Dallas Cowboys running back) Ezekiel Elliott’s family, so he was always a mentor to me growing up. He was my big brother for our track team growing up, so I’ve always wanted to be like him.

You went to the same high school as Boston Celtics rookie and third overall pick in the NBA draft Jayson Tatum. What was that like?

We were pretty good friends. We were in the same homeroom for two years, so we got to know each other. I have his number still and his snapchat and everything. He’s a really cool guy. He’s funny as heck.

Who’s on your fantasy football team?

I’ve never played in my life and still don’t play. But if I had a fantasy team, I’d have Kareem Hunt, Julio Jones and Tom Brady because he’s amazing.

— This interview has been edited for length and clarity.