"It shocked me, but things happen for a reason," said Dawson, who is currently on his way to Cincinnati for an official visit. "(But) you never know who might be Memphis' new coach. The next Bobby Bowden could be there."
Dawson, rated a 4-star athlete by Scout, committed in July along with a slew of other local recruits. Many considered Dawson the biggest pledge for the Memphis program since DeAngelo Williams committed 10 years ago.
Dawson stressed he was still committed but that he would be taking full advantage of the visits he's offered. He said he hasn't planned any after this weekend's visit to Cincinnati.
While he said he stills feels the same way about Memphis as he did when he committed, there's an unmistakable difference now that Porter was let go.
"The absence of Porter plays a major role with me and other recruits," Dawson said.
As Memphis begins its search for a new coach, retaining Dawson and the other local prospects that committed this summer will be at the forefront of the decision.
Dawson said he's not worrying about who Memphis will choose to replace Porter, as he's "confident that it will be a good name," adding that if he had his choice, he'd bring in a "great coach and someone that can relate to us players."
After Porter was fired early this week, many fans questioned the stability of the recruiting class the former Memphis coach had in place. As far as his commitment goes, Dawson is solid. But actually signing with Memphis? That decision, Dawson said, ultimately isn't up to him.
"I'm not sure as of yet (if I'll sign with Memphis)," Dawson said. "It's in God's hands."