Bess with the Dolphins in 2009
|Date of birth:September 13, 1985|
|Place of birth: Hayward, California|
|High school: Oakland (CA) Skyline|
|Undrafted in 2008|
|Debuted in 2008 for the Miami Dolphins|
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2013
Davone Atrayo Bess (born September 13, 1985) is an American football wide receiver who is currently a free agent. He was signed by the Miami Dolphins as an undrafted free agent in 2008. He played college football at Hawaii.
Bess attended Skyline High School in Oakland, California and was a student and a letter-man in football, basketball, and baseball. In football, he was a first team All-City wide receiver as a junior. As a senior, he led his team to the League Championship and was a second team All-City quarterback. Davone Bess graduated from Skyline High School in 2003.
Bess grew up five minutes away from the Oakland Coliseum as an avid Oakland Raiders fan and even played a high school playoff game for Skyline High during his senior year at the Coliseum. His favorite player was Tim Brown.
Bess has stated that "sports pretty much kept me busy, kept me out of trouble, kept me off the streets." Largely raised by a single mom, Bess was the first person in his family to attend college. Bess father did not attend high school, but there are other family members on his Dad's side that attended high school and graduated from college. Unfortunately, the distance between Bess and his biological Dad made him unaware of the achievements of his Dad's family, however several have college degrees. Bess said of his father: "My dad pretty much wasn't there. If anyone was there it was my brother's dad, but not really because he was a big time drug dealer. He was in and out of jail himself and going back and forth so he wasn't a reliable source." At the age of 10, Bess witnessed the murder of his uncle at a birthday party.
Oregon State University
Bess lost his scholarship to Oregon State when he was sentenced to about 21 months in Byron boys ranch juvenile facility after allowing a friend to put stolen items in his car. During his time in the juvenile facility, Bess played in a seven man flag football team created by the facility. His high school coach contacted a former player who was a Graduate Assistant at the University of Hawaii and passed on video of Bess to coach June Jones who then gave Bess an opportunity.
University of Hawaii
Davone Bess joined Hawaiʻi in 2005 and quickly gained a starting spot at wide receiver.
As a freshman, Bess caught 89 passes for 1,124 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns. Selected WAC first team and WAC Freshman of the Year.
As a sophomore, caught 96 passes for 1,220 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns. Named WAC first team.
In his junior year, he finished with 108 catches for 1266 yards with 12 TDs.
During his time at Hawaii, Bess was named to the Associated Press' 2007 All-America third team; the Sporting News, Football Writers Association of America, and Rivals.com's 2005 Freshman All-American team; and was named to the All-WAC first team in 2005, 2006, and 2007.
Despite being undrafted, Bess earned a spot on the Miami Dolphins active roster during the 2008 NFL season. He managed to catch his first NFL touchdown in Week 7 against the Baltimore Ravens. He worked primarily as a slot receiver until starter Greg Camarillo was injured. Bess assumed starting duties beginning in week 13 against the St. Louis Rams, and became a reliable target for quarterback Chad Pennington.
Bess finished the regular season third among NFL rookies in receptions (54) behind two second-rounders—Denver's Eddie Royal (91) and Philadelphia's DeSean Jackson (62). His 54 season receptions is the second most in NFL history for an undrafted rookie (behind only Wayne Chrebet, who had 66 catches in 1995).
Bess was traded to the Cleveland Browns on April 27, 2013, during the 2013 NFL Draft. The Browns traded fourth- and fifth-round selections (#104 and #164 overall) to Miami for Bess and Miami's fourth- and seventh-round picks (#111 and #217 overall).
In Bess' first season in Cleveland, he recorded 42 receptions for 362 yards—both career lows—and 2 touchdowns, while being credited with nine dropped passes, the second-highest total in the league. On December 21, 2013, with two games to go in the season, Bess was placed on the reserve/non-football illness list with a "personal matter," ending his 2013 campaign. He was released on March 5, 2014.
Bess was arrested in Florida on January 17, 2014, on charges of assaulting a law enforcement officer at Fort Lauderdale airport. Broward Sheriff’s Office records show Bess was arrested, after acting erratically and confronting an officer. The arrest comes one day after Bess posted a photo on his Twitter page of a small package containing what appeared to be marijuana. The photo was later deleted. Following the arrest, on January 18, Bess posted yet another photo on Twitter this time of himself nude standing in front of a mirror, this photo was also later deleted adding to the list of bizarre behavior in this short time frame.
- "Dolphins Try To Separate From Pack Versus Raiders; Bess Has Close Ties To Oakland; Other Notes", MiamiDolphins.com, November 14, 2008, retrieved January 5, 2009
- Salguero, Armando (January 2, 2009), "The amazing, inspiring story of Davone Bess", Miami Herald
- Hyde, Dave (December 13, 2008), "Bess Story: From being caught up to catching on", South Florida Sun-Sentinel, archived from the original on December 13, 2008
- Tsai, Stephen (January 5, 2008), "UH's Davone Bess to pass on senior year", The Honolulu Advertiser
- Thompson, Ed (June 25, 2009), "7 Points: Turn Up The Volume", Scout.com
- Farrar, Doug (January 1, 2009), "The Curious Case of Davone Bess", Field Gulls
- "Davone Bess headed to Cleveland". The Associated Press and ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. ESPN.com. April 27, 2013. Retrieved April 28, 2013.
- Davone Bess placed on non-injury list
- McManamon, Pat. "Davone Bess out in Cleveland". ESPN. Retrieved 5 March 2014.
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