The beard is the tell-all.
Tyrin Stone-Davis has a full one.
Tyree Stone-Davis is not a big proponent of facial hair.
If it wasn’t for the one cosmetic difference, you might have a hard time telling the identical twins — two Class of 2014 junior college players from Pierce College in Los Angeles who verbally committed to the Illinois within 48 hours — apart.
“He’s my best friend, my right-hand man,” Tyree said of his brother, who is younger by an hour. “I tell him everything. We always talk about dreams and goals.”
Those dreams and goals will have a chance to materialize in Champaign-Urbana next fall.
Tyrin committed to Illinois on July 23, with Tyree doing the same on July 25.
The twins, who played at Mastbaum Vocational/Technical School in Philadelphia, did not have the best grades coming out of high school in 2011.
Which is why they elected to go the junior college route.
“I had an offer to Rhode Island and Temple, but my grades were horrible,” Tyrin said. “It definitely motivated me, and at the same time, it was hujbling. I look back at it now, and I wasn’t ready for D-I football then. I’m more disciplined and got way faster. I’m more mature.”
Tyrin said he clocks in at 4.3 seconds in the 40-yard dash, a time he shares with one of his favorite NFL wide receivers: Julio Jones of the Atlanta Falcons.
Tyrin, at 6-foot-3, 195 pounds, also likes the way Cincinnati Bengals’ wide receiver A.J. Green plays the game.
“They have the ability to both be deep threats,” he said.
The twins said they’d like to room together at Illinois.
And like to get on the field.
“We can come right in and produce right away,” Tyrin said. “Whether it’s our speed, whether it’s our blocking or whether it’s our experience.”
Tyrin caught 20 passes for 437 yards and five touchdowns in nine games with Pierce last season.
Texas Tech and San Diego State had extended offers to him, and Tyrin said Iowa State and Kansas were about to offer before he committed to Illinois.
He mentioned he had talked more recently to Oregon and Tennessee as well.
Illinois wide receivers coach Mike Bellamy was the lead recruiter on both twins, with Illinois initially offering Tyrin a scholarship first before Tyree picked up one shortly thereafter.
Tyrin said he also talked to head coach Tim Beckman and offensive coordinator Bill Cubit frequently.
“What interested me was the fact they were showing the most love,” Tyrin said. “I felt wanted. That was obviously a plus. The coaching staff did a tremendous job on the recruiting process. They talked to me often.”
Tyree has often gone up against his older brother in practice sessions.
He could very well again at Illinois.
“He’s real good because I’ve got to worry about his speed and his physicality,” Tyree said. “He’s got so many tricks to the trade.”
The Illinois equipment managers will have to figure out how to differentiate the twins’ names on their jerseys.
Tyrin isn’t concerned about that aspect.
“Before I didn’t like my last name, but I realize now it’s different and unique,” he said. “Plus, the numbers we put up are going to make sure people know who we are.”