Ronald Glen Davis was born in Baton Rouge on Jan. 1, 1986 to Donald Robertson and Tonya Davis. He got the nickname big baby when he was playing in peewee leagues. Because he was bigger than the other kids his age, he was playing with older kids and would whine at times and they would call him a big baby and the name stuck.
Big Baby has a way of seeing the bright side of everything in life. He went to live with a friend when he was 11 years old because his mother had been jailed. He bounced around foster homes and lived with friends and family as his mother battled drugs and was in and out of jail. Instead of seeing this as a negative, he chose to see his mother's strengths as she has fought drug addiction.
He concentrated on basketball his senior season at University High school in Baton Rouge, Louisiana although he also had a stellar career at University High as tailback of the football team as well as tossing the shot for the U-High track team. He earned Parade and McDonald's All-America honors and was named the Gatorade Player of the Year in the state of Louisiana, the Athlete of the Year as chosen by the Baton Rouge Advocate, and was named Mr. Basketball by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association. He was a top 100 football recruit when he came out of high school. Florida State and Tennessee, among others, wanted him for their football programs.
However, he chose to attend LSU and play basketball. As a freshman, he averaged 13.5 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 1.4 blocked shots and was named SEC Freshman of the Year by the league coaches. In his sophomore season, he led the SEC in scoring with 18.6 ppg and rebounding with 9.7 rpg He was only the fifth player in league history and the first since Shaquille O’Neal in 1991 to accomplish that feat. In his junior season he led the SEC in rebounding with 10.4 rpg and ranked third in scoring at 17.7 ppg. He Earned Second Team All-America honors from The Sporting News and Third Team honors from The Associated Press as a sophomore. He was also named SEC Player of the Year as a sophomore and earned First Team All-Conference honors his sophomore and junior seasons. He finished his collegiate career as LSU’s 10th all-time leading scorer with 1,587 points and he also ranks sixth all-time in rebounding with 916 and third in blocked shots with 110.
Big Baby left LSU after his Junior season for the NBA draft. In spite of promises from a couple of teams that they would take him in the first round, he slipped to the 35th pick in the second round where he was taken by the Seattle Supersonics and then traded to the Celtics as part of the deal that brought Ray Allen to Boston.
Big Baby reportedly weighed 358 when he reported for his junior season and he played at 338 but he then hired a nutritionist and completely changed his diet, eating more chicken than hamburgers and eliminating junk food from his diet. When he worked out for teams before the draft, he was reportedly down to 280 and working out hard to remake his body to be ready for the rigors of an NBA season. Last season, he came into summer league at his lowest weight ever and averaged 12 points, 9.8 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks in 27 minutes per game.
Last season, he had a good rookie season but was inconsistent in that some games, he played like a seasoned veteran and others he seemed out matched. He averaged 4.5 points and 3.0 rebounds in 13.6 minutes per game and played in 69 games. He showed flashes at times of being a very good player and with seasoning, he will gain consistency and be even better.
Big Baby is a unique player because of his body strength. Most basketball players are not built like tanks but when Big Baby sets a pick, players definitely know they have been picked. Glen Davis has a charismatic personality which is similar to Shaq's, another LSU alumni. His physical strength is virtually unparalleled for a player his height. Glen Davis has the ability to physically overpower players, but also has the skills and finesse of a smaller player. Glen Davis has a tremendous body control, very soft hands and surprisingly quick feet, which could be attributed to his days on the gridiron. You can see how light on his feet that he is in the video below from his days at LSU.
One of Big Baby's strengths is is character and his leadership. When Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana, the LSU Maravich Center was opened as a crisis center and several of the basketball players came in to help. Big Baby was the first to arrive and the last to leave and did whatever was needed that night. He stood for long hours with his arms out holding bags for IV's and never once complained. He has been involved in the community in Boston and is always ready to keep the mood light in the locker room.
He will once again share minutes at the back up power forward and center positions and will rotate with Leon Powe at the 4 according to matchups. He brings a great sense of humor to the team and helps to keep things loose. One thing is for sure, with his sense of humor and his love of life along with his all out playing style, he makes things a lot more interesting around the Boston and the Garden. Word is that he spent most of the summer in Boston working hard on his game and we should see an even better Big Baby this season.